TRAIL RULES

Permitted Uses for The Sunrise Trail

  • The Sunrise Trail is open 24/7 to both non-motorized and motorized use with the following conditions:

  • Non-motorized use includes but is not limited to: walking, hiking, horseback riding, bicycling, snowshoeing, dog sledding, and skiing.

  • All motorized vehicles permitted on the Sunrise Trail must be legally registered as either an ATV and/or snowmobile.

  • Vehicles registered or built for on-road use such as cars, trucks, jeeps and motorcycles are prohibited.

  • Other vehicles such as golf carts, scooters/mopeds or Dual Sport motorcycles must be registered as an ATV to be on the Sunrise Trail.

  • The trail is developed and maintained for snowmobiles and/or ATVs up to 60-inches wide.

TRAIL CONDITIONS

The Trail conditions determine which type of use, if any, is allowed at any given time.

Construction and Mud Closings

If a section of the trail is closed due to construction it will be identified as “CONSTRUCTION ZONE, NO TRESPASSING” and is closed to all public use.

Trails closed during mud season will have signs stating “STOP TRAIL CLOSED DUE TO SATURATED SOILS.”

Pedestrian use is permitted during mud season and is defined as walking, jogging or hiking use only.

Winter Closings

During the winter season, the snow conditions on the trail determine which types of vehicles may use the trail.

  • If the trail is snow covered, ATVs and horseback riding are not allowed.

  • The following uses are permitted when the trail is snow covered: snowmobiling, snowshoeing, dog

    sledding, skiing, bicycling and hiking.

  • If the gravel trail surface is exposed and frozen (no snow) and conditions allow, ATV use is

    permitted as long as the trail has not been officially closed.

Special Events

Organizations or businesses that would like to host a special event or activity are required to obtain a Special Use or Conditional Use Permit from the Department of Conservation, Off-road Vehicle Division at least 4 weeks prior to the start of the event.

ABOUT THE COALITION

The Sunrise Trail Coalition brings together representatives of the trail’s multiple user groups. Through its membership dues, donations and grants, the coalition sponsors annual community events and provides necessary accessory facilities along the trail such as benches, picnic tables and rest room facilities.
The Sunrise Trail Coalition is a publicly supported non-profit charitable 501 (c) 3 organization.

OUR MISSION

The purpose of the Sunrise Trail Coalition shall be to promote outdoor recreation, health and fitness, and economic development in Hancock and Washington Counties in the State of Maine through education and the development of an integrated on- and off-road four-season, shared-use trail system.

BENEFITS OF THE TRAIL

Sunrise Trail Benefits

  • Improving public health by empowering safe recreational activities

  • Connecting people and communities

  • Creating new and pleasant public spaces for local residents’ and tourists’ use

  • Providing non-drivers such as children, the elderly, persons without vehicles more independence

    for their mobility

  • Providing four season use for walkers, joggers, hikers, bicyclists, equestrians, ATVs and snowmobile riders, skiers, dog sledders, snowshoers, nature enthusiasts, photographers

  • Increasing transportation options

  • Lowering air pollution by substituting car trips with non motorized transportation modes

  • Reducing roadway congestion

  • Providing venue for special events and activities and attractions

  • Enhancing local economic development and redevelopment

  • Creating a destination place for tourism in DownEast Maine

  • Raising property values along the Trail

  • Increasing tax base for municipalities along the Trail

  • Creating construction, reconstruction and maintenance jobs along the Trail

DOWN EAST SUNRISE TRAIL MAP

WESTERN TRAIL

 This segment takes you from Washington Junction to Cherryfield – 28 miles

WASHINGTON JUNCTION
Location: 2 Railroad Siding Street
Parking: Large off-street lot
Trail Section Length: 9 miles, Washington Junction to Franklin
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• Restored rail cars by Down East Heritage Rail at Washington Junction.
• Wildlife-watching opportunities on this section of the trail and most impressively
near wetlands.
• Watch out for deer crossing the trail.

FRANKLIN CROSSING
Location: Intersection of DEST and ME 182 in the center of Franklin
Parking: Large parking lot at Winter Street
Trail Section Length: 7 miles, Franklin Crossing to Tunk Lake Road
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• Take North End Road from trail to Schoodic Beach Road for hiking on Schoodic and Black Mountains and camping and day use on Schoodic Beach.
• The Blackwoods Scenic Byway/ME 182 provides access to Tunk Mountain hiking
trails and Tunk Lake.

TUNK LAKE ROAD/ME 183
Location: Four miles north of US 1 on ME 183 where DEST intersects
Parking: Limited parking next to the trail
Trail Section Length: 8 miles, Tunk Lake Road to Unionville
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• Trail passes through remote forestland and crosses a few logging roads before reaching Unionville.
• Hike, swim and camp at Donnell Pond Public Lands. From trail take North End Road or ME 183.
• The Schoodic National Scenic Byway (US 1).

UNIONVILLE CROSSING
Location: Unionville Road
Parking: Limited trail-side parking
Trail Section Length: 4 miles, Unionville to Cherryfield
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• Trail parallels and then crosses Tunk Stream as it leaves Unionville. It intersects the eastern end of the Blackwoods Scenic Byway/ME 182, then crosses the Narraguagus River at Cable Pool in Cherryfield via an early 20th-century steel trestle bridge.
• Cable Pool, now a town park, is a historically significant salmon pool. It makes a great picnic spot.

CENTRAL TRAIL

This segment takes you from Cherryfield to Machias – 29 miles

CHERRYFIELD CROSSING
Location: Trail crosses ME 193 in Cherryfield
Parking: At North Street – North Street intersects ME 193 about 1 mile north of US 1, and 1/4 mile south of the DEST/ME 193 crossing
Trail Section Length: 7 miles, Cherryfield to Harrington
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• Trail skirts downtown Cherryfield’s historic district and then parallels US 1 for almost 3 miles before crossing the Harrington River.
• A side trip to the historic district for the history and cafes makes for a fun lunch stop.

HARRINGTON AND COLUMBIA FALLS CROSSINGS
Location: Trail crosses North Street just north of Harrington; enters Columbia Falls at Tibbetstown & Centerville Roads.
Parking: Limited at Harrington and Columbia Falls Crossings. Summer and weekend parking at Narraguagus High School, Harrington.
Trail Section Length: 10 miles total (Harrington Crossing to Columbia Falls = 6 miles, Columbia Falls to Jonesboro Station = 4 miles)
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• Pass by blueberry barrens and the Pleasant River before the trail becomes semi-remote beyond Columbia Falls.
• The Wild Salmon Resource Center, Pleasant River Community Forest, Forest Hills Cemetery, Gallison Library and Ruggles House & Garden are great side trips.
• A country store, 1 mile east of Columbia Falls is known for doughnuts and makes a good lunch and provisions stop.

JONESBORO STATION
Location: Trail crosses Station Road northwest of Jonesboro.
Parking: Limited parking next to the trail.
Trail Section Length: 8 miles, Jonesboro Station to Whitneyville Crossing
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• Trail passes through remote forestland and crosses a few logging roads before reaching Unionville.
• Hike, swim and camp at Donnell Pond Public Lands. From trail take North End Road or ME 183.
• The Schoodic National Scenic Byway (US 1).

WHITNEYVILLE CROSSING
Location: Trail crosses ME 1A just south of Whitneyville.
Parking: Limited parking next to the trail.
Trail Section Length: 4 miles, Whitneyville to Machias
Points of Interest & Side Trips: 
• An1868 schoolhouse turned library in1966 is located close to the trail in Whitneyville.
• Leaving Whitneyville, the trail crosses the Machias River and cuts through freshwater marshes and upland forests.
• Skirting downtown Machias, the trail crosses just two roads in this section before reaching the Machias Station 98.

EASTERN TRAIL

This segment takes you from Machias to Ayers Junction – 28 miles

MACHIAS
Location: Trail crosses US 1 in Machias.
Parking: At green boxcar and Station 98, just west of causeway (the dike) and on causeway (no trailers)
Trail Section Length: 4 miles, Machias to East Machias
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• On this trail section visitors cross over extensive salt marshes and experience beautiful views across the Machias and East Machias rivers.
• The trail crosses the Machias Dike, where both flea and farmers’ markets take place in the summer. A motel, ATM and nationally famous blueberry pie-making restaurant provide amenities just west of the dike (causeway). Explore town, then consider a side trip to Roque Bluffs State Park for an on-road bike loop ride.

EAST MACHIAS
Location: Trail crosses US 1 and ME 191
Parking: Limited at ME 191/DEST crossing
Trail Section Length: 7 miles, East Machias to Rocky Lake Crossing
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• This section of the trail runs through fields and forest while paralleling ME 191. The trail intersects the south east corner of Rocky Lake Public Lands, accessed by a multi-use trail, before swinging east toward Dennysville. It is just a short side trip to the boating and camping areas on
Rocky Lake’s shore.
• Visit the East Machias Aquatic Research Center (EMARC) to learn about Maine’s fisheries. Cutler Coast Public Lands, Cobscook Bay and Quoddy Head State Parks and lighthouse are recommended side trips.

ROCKY LAKE CROSSING
Location: Trail crosses ME 191 just south of Diamond Match Road
Parking: West side of ME 191 at trail
Trail Section Length: 10 miles, Rocky Lake Crossing to Dennysville
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• Forests and numerous ponds and streams define this trail section. Don’t miss Rocky Lake Public Lands. Consider a picnic by the smaller Patrick Lake (access off ME 86). Enjoy beautiful views over Harmon’s Stream, the East Ridge, Great Works Wildlife Management Area, and the Denny’s River. w Cobscook Bay and Quoddy Head State Parks are great side trips from Dennysville.

DENNYSVILLE/AYERS JUNCTION
Location: Trail crosses Milwaukee Road in Dennysville.
Parking: US 1 north to ME 86 west to Milwaukee Road north 100 ft. to where trail intersects the road
Trail Section Length: 7 miles, Dennysville to Ayers Junction
Points of Interest & Side Trips:
• The trail continues through relatively remote forestland until it reaches its eastern terminus at Ayers Junction, just a few miles north of Pembroke.
• Add to your adventure by visiting the village of Pembroke, Reversing Falls, Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge, Gleason Cove Park, Shackford Head State Park, and historic Eastport.