Best Day Hikes: 5 winter trips along the Maine Coast

Bauneg Beg Mountain in winter | photo by Carey Kish
A bounty of snow blankets every nook and cranny of the Maine coastline thanks to recent storms.

So snap into your skis or snowshoes and hit the trail with a few favorite spots from Carey Kish, author of the brand-new AMC's Best Day Hikes Along the Maine Coast (now available in AMC's online store with 20% member discount).

AMC's newest guidebook has you covered with 50 of the best trails from the Maine beaches to Downeast. 

York County
Protected by the Great Works Regional Land Trust, Bauneg Beg Mountain in North Berwick is the only major mountaintop in York County without a communications tower. Snowshoe the half-mile trail to the top for far-reaching views north and west to the snow-capped Presidential Range.

Casco Bay
The wilder sections of the 10-mile long Forest City Trail across Portland offer some fine solitude and terrific snowshoeing and cross-country skiing opportunities. The winding Stroudwater River, the salt marshes of the Fore River Preserve and the hemlock groves along the Presumpscot River beckon urban adventurers in winter.

Skis and snowshoes are perfect for exploring the undeveloped shorelines of two 1800s' reservoirs on the Little River Community Trail, wooded wilds just minutes from downtown Belfast. Formerly the city’s public water supply, the human-made lakes and their surroundings are rich with bird and animal life.

Acadia National Park
The Park Loop Road is closed to vehicles in winter, making it a wonderful time to hike the Ocean Path along Frenchman Bay, taking in Sand Beach, Thunder Hole and Otter Cliff en route. The path and parallel road are yours for ski and snowshoe travel from December to early April.

Meander along the crescent beach on Englishman Bay at Roque Bluffs State Park in the tiny coastal enclave of Roque Bluffs. Then don skis or snowshoes and revel in the quiet beauty of the park’s trail system, which leads over a wooded hilltop to a shorefront vista at Rose Ledge.

Carey Michael Kish has been exploring the hiking trails along the coast and in the mountains of Maine for more than four decades. Carey is a freelance outdoors and travel writer and photographer, editor of AMC’s Maine Mountain Guide and the AMC Maine Chapter’s Wilderness Matters, and writes a regular hiking and camping column for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram.

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