Situated between Chitman Point and Dyer Bay in Downeast Maine is Pigeon Hill Preserve, a glorious 170-acre property that offers tranquil forests, splendid hiking, and majestic views of the surrounding area. The Land for Maine’s Future program supported the Downeast Coastal Conservancy’s purchase of this land, which occurred in several different phases from 2007 to 2010. The preserve’s namesake doubles as its crown jewel: Pigeon Hill’s bald granite summit has an elevation of 317 feet and offers visitors gorgeous panoramic views of Donnell Pond Public Reserved Lands, Petit Manan Lighthouse, the Greater Pleasant Bay archipelago, and even the mountains of Acadia National Park. A popular and recommended hiking option involves taking the 0.4-mile Historic Trail up and the Summit Loop and Silver Mine Trail back down. This route is fairly easy and presents visitors with gorgeous vistas and evidence of Pigeon Hill’s human history (most notably remnants of an 1800s silver mine) along the way.
Pigeon Hill Preserve is a fantastic destination for wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers. Bobcats, foxes, porcupines, and snowshoe hares are all fairly common here, and sightings of larger mammals such as deer, moose, and black bear are occasionally reported as well. The property will delight birdwatchers, as it is an excellent place to spot hawks, Pileated Woodpeckers, Spruce Grouse, Red-breasted Nuthatches, and more. Botany enthusiasts can examine some unique plant life within this predominantly maritime spruce-fir forest, such as a jack pine woodland, a small colony of screwstem, and three-toothed cinquefoil-blueberry low bald at the summit. The preserve also houses several glacial erratic boulders that are believed to have been formed in the previous ice age.
Birdwatching, Hiking, Hunting, Nature Study, Picnicking, Wildlife Watching, Walking, Snowshoeing
Downeast Maine – Hancock & Washington
From Steuben or points west, turn onto US-1 N (Main Street) and follow it for 2.6 miles. Next, turn right onto Pigeon Hill Road. Drive about 4.5 miles to the parking area opposite an old cemetery on the left.