After a few moderate trails under our belt, we felt eager to try Beehive trail which is marked as difficult level. Beehive and Precipice are probably the two most famous difficult-level trails in Acadia. Precipice was closed due to endangered peregrine falcons nesting until Aug. We have also heard that Precipice was technically challenging so you really need to be an avid hiker to give it a try (people have died from hiking it). On the other hand, Beehive is just scary-looking due to its vertical ascend along the exposed cliffs but nothing too challenging technically. Don’t take your little ones on this trail though - I think they need to be at least 8 or 9 years old.
The Beehive trail started out relatively easy. The first 5 minutes of it shares the same path as the Gorham Mountain trail we went on in the previous week. Once we passed the infamous yellow warning sign (basically tells you to turn around if you have fear of heights or don’t feel completely ready), the trail quickly became more difficult. It’s literally a vertical climb with a think edge of safety along the cliffs. I was leading the way as hubby has a bigger fear of heights. But when I got to the first flight of iron rungs for climbing up a segment of the cliffs, my legs started shaking and I said to him “if you don’t want to do this, I am ok with turning around right now”. To that, he responded “I think it is too late ... it’s more difficult to go down now than continue up.” I know he was right but I couldn’t move my legs at that point. Luckily there was another group right behind us so we let them go ahead first. Watching them climbing up the iron rungs with ease calmed me down a bit. We followed their lead.
The hike was relatively short. With a lot of rock scrambling and climbing on all fours, we finally made it to the top. My legs felt soft the whole time as I looked back and down a few times to check on hubby and took photos. If you have any fear of heights, don’t look back when you climb up. The view on top was great but probably not the best we have seen so far in Acadia. So this trail is more about the experience of the vertical climb than the view. We are glad we did it and came down in one piece. Having done this experience, we think we will stick with the moderate level trails for the rest of our stay 🤪.