The 32 acre Pond Island Preserve has a diverse array of coastal environments including a cuspate barrier beach, salt pond, sand dunes, and a salt marsh. Away from the shore, find a maritime spruce-fir forest, shrubland, and a grassy meadow. Pond Island’s interior also includes a prominent hill that rises more than seventy feet above sea level. These many different habitats attract a wide array of avian species to the island such as sandpipers, waterfowl, raptors, and songbirds.
Pond Island has a long history of human activity. Native people used the island for centuries, while the first European settlers arrived in the 1600s. In the centuries that followed, the island did not house any permanent year-round residents, but drew people seasonally for fishing, hunting, and, by the 20th century, as a summer retreat.
In 1980, Pond Island was purchased by Philadelphia Conservationists, Inc. (later named the National Land Trust) following a citizen’s fundraising effort spearheaded by Betty Eberhart. By 1982, the new owners had granted a forever wild easement to Acadia National Park. The easement stipulated that the island can only be used for “conservation, education, and recreational purposes.” In 1995, the Philadelphia Conservationists transferred Pond Island to MCHT.
Today, most visitors venture here during the day to enjoy Pond Island’s beaches that total more than one mile of shoreline. Others explore the tidal pond and stream. More adventurous visitors spend the night at one of the island’s campsites. There is also a short hiking trail that leads from one of the campsites, over the highpoint and down into a meadow. The island’s easiest access on most days is on the north side; however, it is possible to access the island from the south.
- Camp At Established Campsites
- Limit Stay to 2 Nights
- Groups of 6 or More and Commercial Users by Permission Only. Please call 207-729-7366.
- Fires By Permit Only - Maine State Law
- Contact Maine Forest Service at 207-827-1800 for Permit
- Keep All Fires Below High Tide Line
- Do Not Cut or Break Tree Limbs, Dead or Alive
- Leave No Fire Unattended
- Completely Extinguish All Fires
- Stay on Established Trails
- Carry Out All Trash
- Including Human and Pet Waste and Toilet Paper
- Keep Pets Under Control
How to Get There
Pond Island is located in the northeastern part of Penobscot Bay, near the western end of Eggemoggin Reach.