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Cadillac South Ridge Trail



4.0 mile 6.5 kilometer point to point


Ascent: 1,473' 449 m
Descent: -142' -43 m
High: 1,517' 462 m
Low: 149' 45 m


Avg Grade: 8% (4°)
Max Grade: 40% (22°)


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Trail shared by James Kaiser

Great views of the southern shore of Mount Desert Island on the way to Cadillac's summit.

James Kaiser

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For many people, the Cadillac South Ridge Trail is the best route to the top of Acadia's tallest mountain. Like the Cadillac North Ridge Trail, it offers spectacular ocean views. But unlike the Cadillac North Ridge Trail, it never skirts the Park Loop Road, so you'll never have to listen to cars whizzing past.

The trailhead, located off Route 3 about 150 feet southwest of the turnoff to Blackwoods Campground, doesn't look like much, which might be why many people overlook this trail. After a slow start through the woods, the Cadillac South Ridge Trail climbs to higher elevations, and the views start to open up.

The higher you climb, the better the views become. Just before the junction with the Canon Brook Trail, you'll pass the Featherbed, a small pond that's a nice place to take a break. Past the Featherbed, the trail ascends a rocky ridge. Follow the cairns and blue blazes to the summit, and don't forget to turn around and enjoy the spectacular views of the Gulf of Maine along the way.

If you find yourself spending the night at the Blackwoods Campground, take note that this trail can be accessed from the southwest corner of the campground. If you're planning to watch the sunrise from the trail, this shortcut could save you valuable time.

Thanks to guidebook author and photographer, James Kaiser, for sharing this trail description. To learn more about visiting Acadia, check out his .

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Family Friendly, ADA Accessible, Need to Know, Flora & Fauna


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Sep 25, 2019
Hannah Hood
Sep 23, 2019
Ada Hui Xu
Sep 16, 2019
Jennifer Wetzel
Aug 23, 2019
Chris Horton
1mi — 0h 35m
Aug 18, 2019
Francesca Infantine
Aug 16, 2019
Jim Rimback
Aug 16, 2019
Abby Lewis
Hiked down from the summit in scattered showers. Lots of great ridge walking and ever changing scenery. There was one iron rung. 4mi
Aug 12, 2019
Ian Trapp

Trail Ratings

  4.7 from 30 votes


  4.7 from 30 votes
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in Maine


126 Views Last Month
3,280 Since Sep 1, 2015



Junction with Cadillac West Face Trail.
Mar 29, 2016 near Bar Harbor, ME
Acadia National Park after the sunset.
Mar 30, 2016 near Bar Harbor, ME
Who knew?  Dogs on leash are allowed on all Acadia NP trails!
Feb 17, 2019 near Bar Harbor, ME
Making our way back to Blackwoods Campground along the Cadillac Southridge Trail on an early hazy morning.
Jul 2, 2016 near Bar Harbor, ME
Cadillac South Ridge Trail views. with permission from E Koh
Mar 30, 2016 near Bar Harbor, ME
Sunrise from Cadillac Mountain.
Mar 29, 2016 near Bar Harbor, ME


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