Acadia National Park plans expansion on MDI

Posted June 18, 2011, at 6:12 p.m.
Last modified June 19, 2011, at 10:20 a.m.

ACADIA NATIONAL PARK, Maine —- With the help of some nonprofit organizations, the park is planning to grow on Mount Desert Island by more than 50 acres, according to a park official.

There are two parcels that total 56 acres that the park plans to acquire, Acadia Superintendent Sheridan Steele said Friday. One parcel, 39 acres is size, abuts Lower Hadlock Pond near the village of Northeast Harbor. The other, 17 acres, abuts Round Pond, near Long Pond and the village of Pretty Marsh.

Steele said the park has $1.7 million to go toward acquisition of the parcels, both of which are within the limit for park expansion that was set by Congress in 1986. The parcels together cost more than that amount, he said, but Acadia is getting some assistance from Friends of Acadia and Maine Coast Heritage Trust in purchasing properties.

“Both of these tracts are undeveloped and we want to keep them that way,” Steele said.

Purchase details have yet to be worked out, he added, but the park hopes to close on the properties by the end of this year.

The parcel by Lower Hadlock Pond, which serves as the water supply for Northeast Harbor, already has some trails on it that link into trails in Acadia, Steele said. The park is expected to incorporate at least some of those trails into its existing trial system, he said.

“It’s very popular to visit that lake,” the superintendent said.

The park already owns land on the west side of Round Pond, according to Steele, but there are no existing trails on its shores. He said that people have been known to paddle out onto the pond in kayaks and canoes.

“Longer term, we may add trails in there,” he said.

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