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Acadia National Park - Jordan Cliffs Loop

This trail offers a challenging hike across the steep slope, iron rungs included, and a strenuous climb up Sargent Mountain. Hikers are rewarded with panoramic views from two mountain summits and a picturesque pond nestled between the mountains.
Trail Activity
5.00 miles, Network
Mount Desert
Not Permitted



This is a busy trail system, especially on weekends between 9AM-4PM. Consider visiting outside of peak periods. Use Maine Trail Finder to identify other nearby trails. If the parking lot is full when you arrive, please choose another trail. 

The Spring Trail has a gradual ascent using several sets of stone stairs. The junction for the Jordan Cliffs Trail, is just before encountering the carriage road. Bear right and cross the carriage road. The Jordan Cliffs Trail continues through the forest as it traverses the rugged East Face of Penobscot Mountain. Stone steps, and a narrow, one log bridge provides some assistance. Sections of the trail allow open views of Jordan Pond, Pemetic Mountain and The Bubbles. There is a section of trail which is narrow with a 200 foot drop. Another section is an exposed climb with iron rungs (see note below). After the junction with Penobscot East Trail, the Jordan Cliffs Trail begins a rugged descent and ends at the junction of the Deer Brook Trail and the East Cliffs Trail.

The hike continues straight on the Sargent East Cliffs Trail. The first section of the trail is a steep, rugged climb. Stone steps provide some assistance. Just before the Sargent Mountain summit, the trail levels off and then gradually ascends. The hiker is rewarded with excellent views of Jordan Pond, Eagle Lake and the surrounding mountains. After reaching the summit of Sargent the hike continues down the Sargent South Ridge Trail with a left turn at the junction with the Penobscot Mountain Trail. The trail descends steeply and passes Sargent Mountain Pond before ascending the north slope of Penobscot. The hike continues south on the Penobscot Mountain Trail, descending on open granite providing excellent views of Jordan Pond and the outlying islands. At the junction of the Spring Trail, turn left. The Spring Trail descends steeply. This first section is very rugged. Expect to use both hands. A couple of iron rungs and wooden rails offer some assistance. Care is advised. It then crosses the carriage road and returns to the Jordan Pond area.

Note: Because of its steep nature and difficult nature, this trail is not recommended for small children, people with a fear of heights, or in wet weather. If the hiker has had enough after the open iron rung section of the Jordan Cliff Trail, at the next junction take a left to reach the summit of Penobscot and descend to the south on the Penobscot Mountain Trail to the Spring Trail.

Other Information

Geocaching is prohibited within Acadia National Park; however, the park does sponsor an EarthCache Program for those seeking a virtual treasure hunt!

Trail Manager

Visit Acadia National Park online for more information or contact:

National Park Service, Acadia National Park

National Park Service, Acadia National Park
PO Box 177
Bar Harbor, ME 04609
Phone: (207) 288-3338

Nearby Events


Trail Tips

Plan Ahead and Prepare
Find out about and follow any local regulations and respect landowners’ property.
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Trailhead Information

Starting from ME Route 3, turn off at the Hulls Cove Entrance to Acadia National Park and the Hulls Cove Visitor Center. Follow the Park Loop Road. At 2.8 miles continue straight remaining on the two-way section of the Loop Road following signs for Jordan Pond. Use the North Lot parking area on the right just before the Jordan Pond House. Walk down the boat access to the pond. At the pond, turn left on the Jordan Pond Trail. When it connects with the carriage road, turn left on the road. At sign post 15 turn right. The Spring Trail begins after crossing a small wooden foot bridge.

During the busy summer months, parking is very difficult to find. Leave your car at the Hulls Cove Visitor Center and take the Island Explorer Bus. From behind the gift shop take the path through the woods to reach sign post 15.

Click on a parking icon to get custom directions
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