Located on Frenchboro Long Island, this 1159-acre preserve includes 8.2 miles of shoreline, hundreds of acres of spruce forests, and dozens of forested and open wetlands, headlands, and beaches. While the interior provides intact habitat for forest and wetland wildlife, the preserve's rocky shoreline is home to rare plants such as mare's tail and beachhead iris. Beaver and deer were introduced in the 1900s and have definitely left their mark with ponds and little hardwood understory. Frenchboro Long Island is also home to nesting bald eagles and is a popular stopping point for migratory birds.
The preserve offers a network of more than 10 miles of hiking trails that provide access to an array of spectacular shoreline vistas. Please use care in planning your route as the trails are rustic and largely unmarked. Many of the paths on the island extend from MCHT land onto private property. Neighboring landowners have generously continued the island tradition of allowing the public to cross their properties. Please respect their privacy by staying far away from any structures and leaving no trace of your visit.
Frenchboro Long Island is home to approximately 65 year-round residents who make their living primarily from the sea through lobster fishing. The village is clustered around Lunt Harbor, and includes a schoolhouse, post office, church, museum/library, firehouse, a small store, and a dockside deli, in addition to the residences and working wharves. MCHT acquired the bulk of the Frenchboro Preserve in 2000 and, through a generous donation, added a second parcel including Rich's Head in 2011.
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Preserve information & guidelines
- No Camping Permitted
- No Fires Permitted
- Stay on Established Trails
- Carry Out All Trash
- Including Human and Pet Waste and Toilet Paper
- Keep Pets Under Control
- Please Respect the Privacy of Preserve Neighbors
How to Get There: Frenchboro Long Island can be accessed by private boat. There are moorings available for rent in the harbor. The island is also accessible with same day, roundtrip ferry service two Wednesdays each month or via a passenger only ferry service that operates each Friday from early spring to late fall. Both ferries depart the mainland from Bass Harbor.