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contingency plans

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St. Louis
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contingency plans

My friends and I are scheduled to spend 4 nights in Bar Harbor starting 10/4. Most of our plans revolve exploring/hiking around Acadia National Park With the threat of a government shutdown looming we were thinking we needed to come up with some contingency plans. We’d like to keep the current hotel reservation we already have booked. Any suggestions?

Bar Harbor, Maine
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1. Re: contingency plans

Not to worry. Even if they gate off the Park Loop Road there will be many ways to get into the Park to hike and to bike. The bicycle rental places will be able to tell you how to access the carriage roads and your lodging place or any friendly local will tell you numerous ways to hike into the Park. The Island Explorer buses have promised to keep running, even if they have to skirt the Park proper.

For example, there is a parking lot at the north end of Eagle Lake that the buses will take you to or that you can drive to or that you can bike to. From there you can bike the entire route of the carriage roads. There is a trail right from the south end of Bar Harbor from which you can hike to Sand Beach.

Also it is not entirely clear just what the Park will be required to gate off. In the winter, we always still have road access to Sand Beach and Thunder Hole and Jordan Pond. So maybe they will keep the winter access roads open.

And you will still be able to book a kayak tour or take some of the privately run boat tours. Lots to do, even if they gate off the Park Loop Road.

Chicago, Illinois
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2. Re: contingency plans

Thanks for posting this question. I was worried about the same thing! Thanks Bonniemaev for the reply, I was worried about my upcoming trip.

Bar Harbor, Maine
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for Bar Harbor, Acadia National Park
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3. Re: contingency plans

Like bonniemaev, I suspect that if worst comes to worst, the winter access routes will remain open---the major one gives access to the shore road from Schooner Head overlook past Sand Beach and Thunder Hole to approximately the base of Otter Cliffs.

I'm sure that the park will make whatever announcements are necessary via its web site:

http://www.nps.gov/acad/index.htm

Check back here occasionally; several of us on this forum know most if not all of the other access routes (and how to get to them).

Bar Harbor, Maine
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4. Re: contingency plans

If they do gate off the Park Loop Road, about the only thing that will be hard to get to will be the top of Cadillac Mountain. I'll feel most sorry for the cruise ship people. Their bus tours will be limited. And that view from Cadillac in the autumn is spectacular. The moderately fit will be able to hike to the top.

Also remember there are many other things to do from Bar Harbor. You can take the mail boat from Northeast Harbor out to the Cranberry Islands. Or you can take the mail boat from Stonington out to Isle au Haut. There will be no way to gate off the part of Acadia National Park that occupies half of that remote island.

Plus a day trip down to Camden or up to Lubec and Campobello. But, please trust me, there are many ways to get into Acadia to hike. Even most of those trailheads that are on the Loop Road can be easily accessed from outside of the Park. For example, the trailhead of the very difficult Precipice Trail is a short hike across a meadow from Schooner Head Road, a public road.

The Visitor's Center will close if all this happens. But on the corner of Cottage and Main Streets there is a Chamber of Commerce office. They will help you. And on Main Street Sherman's Book Store sells trail maps.

Georgia
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5. Re: contingency plans

How would that stack up for those with limited mobility. A trip up Cadillac Mtn or around the loop w/short walks or viewpoints are the things I'm looking forward to. My trip is still a month off, so we'll stay tuned and if need be cancel reservations and head to the White Mtns.

The shame is that you'd think park fees would be able to cover ranger salaries, etc... To bad the Nat'l Parks can't keep their fees close to cover costs before kicking it back to Washington.

North Canton, Ohio
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6. Re: contingency plans

Thank you for this question, I arrive in a week and was wondering the same thing.

St. Louis
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7. Re: contingency plans

Thank you for the information. I feel better about our chances to still some of the areas we've been looking forward to seeing for several months.

Bar Harbor, Maine
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for Bar Harbor
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8. Re: contingency plans

Kevin - there are still many scenic roads and short walks that are not part of the actual Park Loop Road - in fact some of the best short walks aren't. You won't be able to take the trip up Cadillac but that is probably the most disappointing. Hopefully, we will be open again by your trip. This shutdown is projected to be about a week. Of course, then they have to have the debt ceiling vote and we might be here all over again.

NJ / NY
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9. Re: contingency plans

Of course, our trip is scheduled for tomorrow. How can you access Cadillac Mt via the trails? Thanks!

Bar Harbor, Maine
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10. Re: contingency plans

One way is to drive south out of Bar Harbor until you see the Blackwoods Campground. A little bit further and on and on the other side of the highway from the campground there is some side-of-the-road parking. This is a trailhead for the South Ridge Trail up Cadillac. Be careful out there, though, it's unclear if there is any facility for search and rescue if you should get hurt.