Seal Harbor is located on the southeastern quadrant of Mount Desert Island. It’s not actually a separate township but rather part of the municipality of Mount Desert. The remote feel of the place, combined with the rugged beauty of the Maine coast enhance its appeal.
The rich and famous have been summering in Seal Harbor for much of its history. Henry Ford of Model T fame built several family cottages here. And Martha Stewart has a substantial estate here as well. In this area, mansions and “summer cottages” adorn the cliffs overlooking the ocean.
Hunters Beach is a secluded cobblestone beach near Seal Harbor. It should not be confused with Little Hunters Beach, which is located past Otter Cove on the Park Loop Road in Acadia.
Hunters Beach is nestled in a little cove a short distance from Route 3. The beach itself is only 100 yards long, but it offers great views of the sea where Hunters Brook empties into the Atlantic Ocean.
BEST TIME TO PHOTOGRAPH
Although it would be possible to photograph Hunters Beach at both sunrise and sunset, I find the angle and curvature of the beach much better suited for sunsets.
If you want to capture the setting sun and backlit sky above the cobblestones, I suggest you come here between September and March when the sun sets over the west end of the beach.
GETTING TO HUNTERS BEACH
To reach Hunters Beach, take Route 3 from Bar Harbor and drive 6 miles south toward Seal Harbor. After passing the entrance to Blackwoods Campground, continue driving another .8 miles further and then make a left turn onto Cooksey Road. After .2 miles, pull into the 4-5 car parking area on your left.
The trail head to Hunters Beach begins at the parking area. The pleasant half-mile hiking trail meanders along Hunters Brook, over man-made steps and small wooden bridges maintained by volunteers.
I suggest wearing waterproof boots as you may need to step across Hunters Brook to reach the east side of the beach. Boots also give you the flexibility to position your tripod in shallow water.
Watch your step on the beach as the cobblestones can be very slippery when wet. And, be sure to bring a headlamp or flashlight for the hike back to the car after shooting the sunset.