409 High Street - P.O. Box 1171 - Ellsworth, ME 04605 - Phone: 207-667-0002 Fax: 207-667-0627

Cadillac Cliffs Trail to undergo rehabilitation

From Acadia National Park: 
Beginning July 13, the Acadia National Park (ANP) trail crew will be rehabilitating the Cadillac Cliffs Trail on Gorham Mountain.   Due to overhead lifting systems, the trail will be closed Monday through Friday, from 7:00 am until 4:00 pm.  The project will continue through mid-August.

The Cadillac Cliffs Trail was constructed at the beginning of the Village Improvement Society (VIS) trails construction era.  The 1906 VIS stonework features of the tread, the route, the dry stone masonry, and trail character are exemplary representation and signature examples of early VIS trail work on the Acadia system.  The trail is determined eligible (2001) to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a historically significant cultural landscape.

Lack of maintenance has led to the development of substantial eroded gullies in the tread way, collapsing stone stairs and retaining walls, and loss of the cultural character of this trail.

This project will complete the following: halt erosion, installation of new or rehabilitation of deteriorated existing stone stairs, rehabilitating collapsed retaining walls, and restoration of the path to its original character. The project will provide a safe, sustainable tread, and halt the decline of the historical integrity of the trail while improving the visitor experience.

This rehabilitation project will accomplish the following goals from Acadia’s Hiking Trails Management Plan (02/02):

  • “Preserve the elements and features that contribute to the historical character of the trail system as a cultural resource…”
  • Rehabilitate the path “in a manner that preserves their character-defining features …including … construction styles and materials…”
  • “Minimize soil erosion, vegetation loss, and other impacts of …trails…on natural resources.”


The work is part of the larger rehabilitation effort underway through Acadia Trails Forever, the partnership with Friends of Acadia.  Both cultural and environmental resource damage issues will be addressed during this project.  The repairs will be in a manner consistent with already existing work on this historical path.


For more information on this project or the Hiking Trails Management Plan, please contact the trail foreman, Gary Stellpflug, at 288-8761.