Our Lands, Trails & Islands
quiet nature walks and beautiful vistas at our many Deer Isle preserves.
Photo by Ken Crowell
Come and hike the IHT Trails and see
the Natural Side of Deer Isle
Where Can I Bring My Dog?
General Use Policies
Island Use Policies
Islands Around Deer Isle Open to the Public
Metal Detector Use Policy
Letterboxing - an Introduction
DeeriNature Self-Guided Nature Trails offers a digital introduction to the plants and animals found here on the island. Thanks to ecologist Ken Crowell and natural history writer Marnie Reed Crowell for creating this suite of PDFs, a local compendium of PDFs based on their years of nature walks, and to Roger Hooke and Robert Knowlton for contributions in their respective fields: geology and marine biology.
Enjoy our newest preserve, the Lisa Tolman Wotton Nature Preserve, located 1 mile down Blastow Cove Road, on Little Deer Isle. Explore newly built trails through cedar groves and over rocky ledges. Maps and more information to come.
Scott’s Landing is open to the public
with over 20 acres of fields, trails, and shorefront to explore.
Access to the property is off Route 15 at the end of the Causeway
just across from Causeway Beach. Signs, a kiosk,
and brochures will welcome you. Like all IHT preserves, parking is limited so come early or come back another
day if the area is full. There are places to picnic and view Eggemoggin
Reach and watch sailboats and powerboats pass under the Deer Isle
Bridge. Explore the old fields and sand beach. Dogs are not allowed, so please leave your pets at home. Scott's Landing Brochure.
Take a hike up Pine Hill on Little Deer to enjoy
the wonderful views of the Reach and surrounding mainland and
outer islands. Read about and see the rare serpentinized peridotite
and the quarry where rock for the Causeway was mined. Pine Hill Brochure.
To get to Pine Hill, turn off
Route 15 at the Chamber of Commerce Booth onto Eggemoggin Road.
Continue .2 miles until you come to Blastow Cove Road at the church
and turn left. Go another .2 miles to Pine Hill parking area on
In between the two preserves is Bowcat Overlook
right before you head onto the Causeway from Little Deer Isle.
This one-acre shore property is the access point to Carney
Island that was a companion parcel when IHT purchased
the northern end of Carney. You will see a plaque there highlighting
the connection between this point and Robert McCloskey’s
book Time of Wonder, the history that provides the name for the
region, and the interesting geology of the area.
Settlement Quarry - come and explore this old granite quarry. Trails guide you around the quarry and through the woods. Take in the great views of Merchants Row and Isle au Haut. Settlement Quarry Brochure.
To get to the Settlement Quarry, take Route 15
toward Stonington until you come to Ron’s and take
a left onto Oceanville Road, just under a mile and you will
see a sign on the right after Settlement Road. Plan
to spend a good half a day as there are many trails you may
throughout the Quarry.
To preview the geological highlights of the Settlement Quarry, go to http://www.maine.gov/doc/nrimc/mgs/explore/bedrock/sites/jun11.htm.
Check out Shore Acres Preserve off the Sunshine
Road. From Route 15, take Sunshine Road in Deer Isle
across from the Irving station and travel 1.2 miles and bear
on Greenlaw District Road and almost a mile until you see
the preserve entrance on the right. There are two looping trails
(Stonewall and Goldthread Trails) that connect and bring you
to the Shore Trail. The trail loop is 1.5 miles long. The woods
quiet and enchanting. The shore offers spectacular views of Greenlaw
Cove and Campbell Island. Shore Acres Preserve Brochure.
Not far from your turn onto Greenlaw District Road, you will find
the Edgar Tennis Preserve further down Sunshine
Roadd. Go about 1.3 miles from where Greenlaw intersects Sunshine
and take a right onto Tennis Rd. and continue on to find the preserve
register box on the left and small parking spaces after that.
Pick up a brochure and you can weave through beautiful walkways
to the Davis or Pickering Farm foundations and read about the Davis
history on a new historic display. This state land is managed
by IHT. Look for eagles and ospreys along the shore and try to
spot seals resting on Toothacher Ledge. Tennis Preserve Brochure.
In Stonington, off Whitman Road from Route 15A (Sunset Road),
you will find the Crockett Cove Woods a "100-acre
wood" and sanctuary filled with a wide variety
of ferns, mosses, and lichens. Famed designer and painter Emily
Muir donated this "fog forest" to The Nature Conservancy.
We have installed new signs and an easy to read map. Listen
for the call of a red-breasted nuthatch or a kinglet. Crockett Cove Woods Brochure.
Finally, off the Sunset Road down Goose Cove Road, you will find
the popular Barred Island Preserve managed by
IHT and owned by The Nature Conservancy. The land belonged to
Charles Sellers and then Frederic Law Olmsted. IHT recently took
on an easement protecting an additional 28 acres abutting the
Preserve to protect its fragile wildlife habitat and forest. Its
mile-long winding trail leads you through a variety of forest
scenery until you come to a commanding view of a panorama
encompassing Isle Au Haut to Mark Island and beyond.
Turning back to the main trail, you will shortly discover wonderful
beaches on either side of the bar leading to Barred Island. It is a long mile walk with some challenging roots and rocks; you will want to allow for about 45 minutes to walk to the shore and about 2.5 hours on either side of high tide to access Barred Island. The
island itself has been open recently since no nesting bald eagles
are present. Please respect that no dogs are allowed at this preserve, rules set by The Nature Conservancy to protect the wild and plant life of the preserve. IHT has other preserves where dogs are permitted. Barred Island Preserve Brochure.
The Island Heritage Trust owns a number of islands that are open for day visits by the public.
In Merchant's Row off Stonington Wreck, Round and Millet Islands welcome visitors to picnic on the beaches or explore the rocky shore. The dense spruce growth makes the interiors of Round and Millet difficult to access. Please practice "leave no trace" exploration on all three islands. What you bring in, please pack out. At the entrance to the Deer Island Thorofare is Mark Island with its lighthouse. The lighthouse is still operational and is closed to the public. As the landing is difficult, please enjoy Mark Island from the water.
To the north, off Little Deer Isle, the Island Heritage Trust owns the northern end of Carney Island - this is an eagle nesting site so please refrain from visiting between March and July until the young have left the nest (check with the IHT office, 207-348-2455). The nest and its inhabitants may be viewed from Causeway Beach. Up the west shore of Little Deer Isle is Sheep Island and further offshore is Bradbury Island. Both are open for day visits, but the landing on both is difficult and heavy growth makes the interiors relatively inaccessible.
On the east side of Deer Isle, in Southeast Harbor, Polypod Island is a site for a boating picnic and island exploration.
For more island resources visit the Maine Island Trail Association.