Maine Island Trail

I have the trail guide. Looking for suggestions on best place to start to do a two week paddle on the trail. Places to skip etc.

do you like crowds?
unless you like people … ALOT, avoid the MITA until after Labor Day. the place is VERY crowded all summer long and you will run into campsites with no room left.

are you a member of MITA? if not, don’t go. the rangers will catch you and you’ll be sorry.

anything else you wanna know?

I have no idea what the above babble is about. Its certainly not accurate.

In July and August Stonington is a crowded place. East of Schoodic is barely touched. Western Rivers (I am a caretaker) are not much used either. Casco Bay (Jewell) is busy. Thief in Muscongus is busy as well as Crow. Strawberry is not. Hungry is not.

That you have the book is fine. Now follow it with a membership. That will open to you legally not only the 46 BPL islands that anyone can use but the other 50 private islands that are guaranteed to give you relief from crowds.

BTW there are no MITA rangers. Monitors yes, police no.

My faves are to start in Bar Harbor and then escape east. YOu can easily spend two weeks working east along the shore and north in to Passamaquoddy Bay (there are MITA islands way up that bay). The tradeoff is you need a high degree of skill to deal with currents, 15-25 foot tides.

the above babble is about …
many summers guiding trips throughout the islands. perhaps you’ve not spent much time there. anyone who has paddled the MIT’s will tell you that summer is NOT a time to seek solitude along the trail.

sorry to disagree. Its not been my experience either on the MITA boats doing cleanup or in the yak. I do avoid Stonington and anything around Acadia and most of Muscongus.

The membership is well worth it. Private islands accessible by MITA members are not crowded. They are not accessible to commercial guided groups.


I spend some time up that way. I would not bother going if I ran into “crowds”. I still spend many a day without seeing a single other paddler. Saturdays no less. I have camped on islands I have had to myself. Maybe I just got lucky. I am not a Mita member. Many of the islands along the trail are state owned. Anyone can use them. Anyone can camp on them.