Today we came back to Acadia to find the cave we were trying to find a few weeks ago. Dave and I know it by the Bear Cave, The Bear Cave is no longer listed as an attraction at the park. It was abandoned years ago along with the Anemone Cave. Bryan refers to the cave he was looking for as the Road side Cave. I didn't find any reference to the Roadside Cave in any trail directions in the park, past or present. The Bear Cave is on the side of the road too so we were thinking the cave we were both searched for was one in the same. I did find directions to the Bear Cave in an old map of Acadia, an abandoned trail now. To find the cave we started out on the Park Loop Road by the Visitors Center in Hulls Cove heading toward Cadillac Mountain. At approx. 2.3 miles Bryan stopped at the second pull over on the left.
I thought we would have to walk to the cave but Bryan said we were here. It didn't look like what Dave and I were thinking the Bear Cave looked like. Bryan remembered this cave as a child when his parents took him to Acadia camping, forty plus years ago. Once we got off the bike the kid came out of Bryan. No surprise though because Acadia National Park has a tendency to do that to you.
You know you are in the right spot if across the road the rock ledge looks like a sleeping dinosaur.
Bryan kept referring to this cave as the one "beside the road" for the last few weeks as we talked about finding it. Our cave we were looking for was beside the road too...After seeing this cave It made sense that the one Bryan was looking for was indeed a Road side Cave but not the one we were looking for. Bryan told us when he crawled out of it...he would need a spotter to make sure he didn't get hit by oncoming cars. Once we saw the exit we realized he wasn't fibbing either.
As you can see by this exit hole it could be a very dangerous place to play. The hole you exit really does meet the roadside. I'm thinking forty years ago there was a lot less traffic here.
Bryan plunged inside. I looked inside and realized I would not be going through that thing. The cave is about 40 feet long and although it seems spacious at the starting point it only got narrower the further in I went. It didn't take me long to turn around and head out the way I came. Dave started in but quickly realized his replacement knee wouldn't make it possible for him to scooch and crawl so watched as Bryan had all the fun. Sheila was the spotter, lucky girl...I don't think she would have gone in anyway. It was exciting when I saw Bryan's hand come through the little exit hole. Bryan said part of the cave you walk in, other parts you scooch, and then closer to the end your crawling. After he got out he said he was happy we didn't have an earthquake just about this time. This was a fun spot. You wouldn't know it's here if you weren't looking for it.
looks like rock monster guarding the exit way.
SECOND CAVE The Old Bear Cave
from the Roadside Cave we continued on the park loop road toward sand beach, past the Bear Brook sign, then the Bear brook pond on the right and just past that there is a pull over on the left. The other side of the road is a tall rock ledge as seen in the picture below. We pulled over here. If you get to the pay gate you've gone too far. That's what happened to us a few weeks ago.
Once we pulled into the pull over and looked forward toward the rock ledge where the ledge ends and trees start this is where the cave is found. It can barely be seen just beyond the trees.
cave just inside the trees. Used to be on the old maps of Acadia...it's not listed anymore...If your not looking for it you might not find it.
The guys making sure there are no bears inside.
If your looking for a little something easy to find not far off the beaten path look for these two caves. If you have kids they would love it, heck if you have kids or don't have kids you would love it! Just remember the danger factor if kids are involved. You might want to forego the Roadside cave with little children. Whether on foot finding caves or hiking a trail it's much more fun when you bring along some friends.