Thursday, July 30, 2020

Downeast Camping Trip, Part 1 (Coastal Lands from Cutler to Lubec - Quoddy Head State Park, Hamilton Cove Preserve, Boot Head Preserve, Bog Brook Preserve, Cutler Coast Public Reserve Land, Eastern Knubble Preserve)

My older son and I went on a three night camping trip in Washington County this past weekend, visiting a large number of parks, preserves and other points of interest.  This post will cover the coastal part of our trip.

Coastal Preserves

Maine's coastline from Quoddy Head to Cutler is dominated by several publicly accessible preserves that offer dramatic views of sheer rock cliffs, rocky beaches and sweeping views of the Gulf of Maine and the Bay of Fundy.  From north to south, public lands include Quoddy Head State Park, Hamilton Cove Preserve, Boot Head Preserve, Eastern Head, Bog Brook Preserve, Cutler Coast Public Reserve Land, Eastern Knubble Preserve and Western Head Preserve (we didn't visit Eastern and Western Head Preserves).  Each preserve is within 10-20 minutes of the next.

A map containing all six of our hikes is here.

Quoddy Head State Park

Perhaps best known for the iconic West Quoddy Lighthouse, Quoddy Head State Park also has several miles of hiking trails that provide dramatic views of sheer rock cliffs looking out over the Bay of Fundy at Grand Manan Island.

We visited Quoddy Head three times on this trip, for sunset on Friday night and sunrise on Saturday and Sunday mornings.  Our focus each time was capturing the lighthouse during golden hour; however, we did hike 2.6 miles on the coastal trail out to Green Point.  The trail offers excellent views of the park's dramatic sheer cliffs.


Hamilton Cove Preserve

Hamilton Cove Preserve is a 1,225 acre Maine Coast Heritage Trust preserve.  We hiked 3.1 miles on the coastal trail, which starts off through a grass and brush field and then enters a boreal forest until the trail ends at a bench overlooking the ocean.  Along the way, a side trail leads out to an overlook platform.  For additional information see https://www.mcht.org/preserve/hamilton-cove.


 
Boot Head Preserve

Boot Head Preserve is another Maine Coast Heritage Trust preserve.  The trail leads through a bog and then a coastal forest out to amazing views of the rocky shoreline.   We hiked a total of 2.9 miles.  For more information see https://www.mcht.org/preserve/boot-head.

 
 
 


Bog Brook Preserve

There are two parking areas for MCHT's Bog Brook Preserve - the main lot off of Route 191 and the Moose Cove parking area.  We visited the Moose Cove lot as it provided quick access to the shoreline.  This section of the park has a rocky beach with a number of large rock formations.  A short 0.9 mile hike provided amazing views.  For more information see https://www.mcht.org/preserve/bog-brook-cove.

 
 
 




Cutler Coast Public Reserve Land

Cutler Coast Public Reserve Land is a 12,334 acre preserve with miles of rocky shoreline.  We hiked a small portion of the trails, 3.6 miles roundtrip, from the parking lot to a sheer rock cliff.  For more information visit the state's website here.

 


Eastern Knubble Preserve

Despite being only 30 acres, Eastern Knubble Preserve in Cutler provides dramatic shoreline views and an opportunity to walk through a coastal forest.  For more information visit https://www.mcht.org/preserve/eastern-knubble.

 



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