The Beehive Loop Trail

HARD 664 reviews
#1 of 145 trails in

The Beehive Loop Trail is a 1.3 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Bar Harbor, Maine that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from March until November.

DISTANCE
1.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
475 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

beach

forest

lake

views

wild flowers

wildlife

scramble

no dogs

A steep climb to the top of this small mountain with wonderful views out over the Atlantic and surrounding Acadia hills The Beehive Trail is a very popular moderate to difficult out and back or loop trail using iron rungs on ledges of exposed cliffs, and is very steep, offering spectacular views of Sand Beach and the surrounding area at Acadia National Park. Start just north of and across the One way loop road from the Sand Beach parking area, climbing steps and through the forest to some exposed fairly flat rocky areas and a tall cairn of rocks marking your next steps. Be sure to look for the light blue (Carolina Blue) trail markers as the trail can be quickly lost in your enthusiasm to scale the cliffs. Stay on trail as strategically placed iron rungs, bridges and hand and foot holds take the technical part out of the climb. Once at the top you can opt to go down the back side and make it a loop or go down the way you came.

hiking
1 day ago

This was my first time doing the Beehive Trail, let alone any sort of vertical scaling. As someone who is only 5'2", there were parts of the hike where I really had to assess how I was going to climb. The iron rings really are there to help you, but some of them were a harder reach than others. The climb itself wasn't very physically taxing for an intermediate hiker like me. It was more mentally taxing because of the assessing and bravery required, as you'll be at the edge of the mountain. It's definitely doable for those who are a bit hesitant; I even saw 6 year olds climbing up. Once at the top, I recommend continuing to Gorham Mountain and Ocean Path trails instead of attempting to climb back down. Overall recommend for a memorable hike and definitely not for the faint of heart! And be sure to get there early for a good parking spot during the summer season, we got there around noon on a Saturday and had to park quite far from the trail head.

1 day ago

Ok, so here you have the real review. It was a pretty vertical scale, but with handholds and metal rungs nicely spaced for short girls and smaller brave kids. I have a serious problem with heights, so it does play a-bit of head games with the likes of us. But all in all, a very doable climb. I am not an athlete by any means and I was able to enjoy the climb.

hiking
2 days ago

Main reason I came to Bar Harbor and I wasn’t disappointed!

hiking
2 days ago

Spectacular terrain with great fully rewarding viewpoints!

hiking
2 days ago

The Beehive is a short, strenuous trail that takes you up a series of ledges and handholds to its final peak, before letting you wind your way back down. While a few cab be intimidated by the promise of the climb, it's actually not that difficult: if you're fit enough to climb up the rocky slope that leads from the car park, you've got the balance to get up to the top. And once you're there, this trail is a great jumping off points for nearby loops along nearby lakes and mountain ridges.

3 days ago

busy trail. didnt do the ladder side. bit took long way around great time

3 days ago

Challenging, but AWESOME. Worth the effort and the climb.

hiking
3 days ago

This is a great hike! We did the Beehive trail and returned on the Bowl Trail We headed out at 8 am on a Thursday. We let a young couple pass us before we got to the iron steps but did not see anyone else until the summit. Great views up there. It is short so we did the Great Head Loop after.

hiking
4 days ago

An incredible hike. I would say it tests your nerve more than your stamina. Metal rungs take out the technical side of the climb, but it had my heart racing. Beautiful views of Acadia if the clouds let you peak through. I just took a bus from Bar Harbor to the trail. It starts busy, but the crowds ease as you begin Beehive.
I do not recommend coming down the steeper side. Also it will really slow you down since you will have to carefully pass the majority of hikers going in the other direction. There are narrow areas.

4 days ago

Great hike. Would be better with less people. We had to wait several times but not bad since the views are amazing. Going up the face took us about 30 minutes. Took my 8, 10 and 12 year old and they had no problems. In level of difficulty, I could have taken my tall 6 year old but I didn’t want to manage 4 kids, and it was my first time up so I didn’t know what to expect. My 8 year old is 54 inches and did not have problems with reaching for any of the rungs. But too much smaller may require assistance. We are all experienced hikers, and kids boulder often and do not have a fear of heights. The trail switchbacks so drops are only about 15 feet; looking up appears as if the drop is all the way down. My husband went up the back with 4, and 6 year old and met us at the top. Together we continued down and followed the Gorham trail to Ocean Trail for a full loop. Highly recommend the entire loop.

hiking
4 days ago

So my 19 year-old boys did this and loved it, calling it their most challenging (more than the Mist up to Vernal Falls at Yosemite). We’re fairly novice hikers, so my wife and daughter took the back route up to the Beehive Summit to meet them. Together, we then went to the beautiful Bowl and then descended. 2 hours and ten minutes.

hiking
7 days ago

I always enjoy this hike! A challenge for someone afraid of heights for sure but so so rewarding. Please be wary if you are very afraid of heights or unsteady on your feet. Also make sure to wear shoes with great traction - you're going to need it. Awesome!!!

hiking
8 days ago

Not long but pay attention, as it is challenging with many metal rungs and hand holds

12 days ago

Excellent views and playful environment! Make sure to wear hiking boots to protect those ankles and ensure solid contact on rocks, as it’s so much fun rock jumping

hiking
14 days ago

I’ve never felt so accomplished as when I reached the Beehive Summit. Beware if you are afraid of heights. You will have to climb on iron rungs up the face at various times but the descent is pleasant. Swing by the Bowl after. It’s worth it.

15 days ago

Very fun hike with my wife and two kids (ages 11 and 9). My entire family is in better shape then I and we still had an amazing time. We stopped a few times to let faster people go ahead of us (but honestly I was using these times to catch my breath)...great short hike that gets the ticker really pumping...views and smiles on family’s face was completely worth it let alone the spectacular views

rock climbing
15 days ago

Fun did with wife first timed, then second climb was with son, wife and myself. Was first trip to Arcadia. Was not disappointed. Had a blast and was exciting and felt huge sense of accomplishment as we reached summit and took in breathtaking views of sandy beach and ocean!!!

19 days ago

Great trail, very busy as some spots we had to wait because of congestion

20 days ago

Fun and unique hike with the rungs and climbing. Our whole family completed it including 9 and 11 year old children. Be brave if you are afraid of heights.

hiking
20 days ago

Really fun trail. Both my girlfriend and I are in really good shape and not afraid of heights so it wasn’t that bad. We both wore sneakers and had no issues. The hike is really rewarding and I would recommend it to people who love to hike and see great views. There are several different options to make the hike longer or shorter (1.3 miles-11.8) so you can customize it to fit the difficulty and length you want.

hiking
20 days ago

Hiked with my family today and we all loved the hike. Boys are in HS and College and while we saw some young kids hiking, I would be thoughtful about taking them if they are less than agile, not active or afraid of heights. Otherwise it is manageable if you approach each challenging climb with respect and caution. Take your time and enjoy the views.

22 days ago

Beautiful trail with fun and thrilling heights! My family and I enjoyed hiking up this with exciting views, rings to climb, and many rocks with lots of variety!

22 days ago

great hike, with even greater views. the cliffs were a little scary but overall very well done.

hiking
24 days ago

What a fun trail! Once you get to the top of Beehive you have great views of Acadia, the Bowl, and the ocean. Continue down to the Bowl for a nice lake view. Then the hike on the way back down is very easy over well built staircases.

Although steep at the beginning, I found this trail to be approachable. Bring grippy shoes though, for the iron bars and rocks.

hiking
24 days ago

Great trail with my 14, 12, & 10 year old. Some parts were slippery because it had rained earlier, but still very doable for all ages.

25 days ago

Not a physically challenging hike, but a mentally challenging one. The vertical climb is less than 20 minutes but your head can play tricks on you. My wife, who is extremely fit and an excellent hiker, panicked to the point of tears. But she made it and was happy she did it. Hike up, not down. Down climbing is far more difficult. This hike can be looped in to many other hikes. Don't let the short distance put you off. You can conbine other trails to make this 10+ miles.

hiking
26 days ago

Fantastic climb, wishing it wasn’t so foggy to see the likely beautiful views. Climbed in front of a 9 year old. She did fine. Would consider bringing my 7 & 9 year old next time.

28 days ago

Incredible views that are worth the effort..

hiking
28 days ago

Much shorter time wise on the way up than I thought it was going to be, we did it in 25 minutes at a modest pace. Definitely not a cake walk but the rungs are by and large in the right places to where if you’re reasonably in shape it’s not bad nor is it overly dangerous if you’re paying attention. A few places where the drop off/climbing the sheer side of cliffs is a bit sketchier. Unfortunately when I was there there was a lot of fog so views were limited but on a clear day would be spectacular.

hiking
29 days ago

great hike. stunning views. not overly difficult. a must do if you are In town

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