Saturday, February 22, 2020

Cutts Island Trail, Kittery, Maine Family Friendly Hike

Prior to kids, my first  hiking choice was to hop in the car and drive two hours to the White Mountain wilderness.  Now, that's not a realistic choice.  With two kids under four, the drive time and the difficulty make the Whites a rare treat.  The result has been discovering beautiful nature paths within 30 minutes of my house.  Trails like Hanson Pines, Great Bay, Stratham Hill, and the Winnie the Pooh Trail make the Seacoast a mine of hiking gems!

Child hikes at Cutts Island in Kittery Maine
Icy trail on Cutts Island Trail

Today my family tried a new trail - Cutts Island trail in Kittery Maine!  This Seacoast trail is perfect for someone looking for a relatively easy loop trail and is great for families.  One important thing to mention is that dogs are not allowed.  

Adventure: Cutts Island Trail, Kittery, Maine

Getting There: The trailhead is easy to miss.  It is located at the intersection of Chauncey Creek Rd and Cutts Island Lane.  Located near the bridge, you should be able to see a worn area where cars pull off the side of the road.  A kiosk with sign and outhouse-style bathroom is located at the start of the trail and is partially visible from the road.  There is no official parking area.

Kiosk at Cutts Island Trail in Kittery Maine
Kiosk at Cutts Island Trail in Kittery Maine

Trail:  The moderately trafficked trail is a 1.8 mile loop - on the trail signed as the "orange loop".  This can be cut short by cutting back early on the pink "short loop".  
We started by taking the loop on the left (creek side).  The trail meanders with a gentle incline along Chauncey creek and through salt marsh.  The trail is well marked.  
A few check in trail signs keep you on track.  At the end of the loop, take a hair pinned trail turn and return to the start through a pine forest.  Now the trail is flat and gently sloped downhill at points.  

Difficulty: Easy

Distance: 1.8 mile loop
Child walks in Morning light on the Cutts Island Trail in Kittery Maine
Morning Light on the Cutts Island Trail
trail mapy at Cutts Island Trail in Kittery Maine
Trail maps keep you on track throughout the Cutts Island Trail in Kittery, Maine

Recommendations/Additional Information:

- Parking can be tricky.  You will need to pull of to the side of the road on the trail-side because the other side is marsh/bridge.  

- Parking is free and there are bathrooms at the trailhead.

- We saw people using this spot as a stand-up-paddleboard (SUP) put in.  

- Dogs are not allowed - even on leash.

- This part of Cutts Island is part of a larger +9,000 acre wilderness area called the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge.

My family enjoyed this little treasure of a trail in southern Maine!  Afterwards, we went grabbed coffee and a chocolate croissant at Lil's Cafe in Wallingford Square, Kittery.  It was the perfect winter weekend activity.  I'm so excited to add another Seacoast hike to my collection!

Mother and son hike in Kittery Maine
Hiking with my almost four year old in Kittery Maine

For more Seacoast Hikes, you might enjoy...

Gonic Trails - Rochester

Hanson Pines Trail -Rochester

Willand Pond - Dover

Stonehouse Pond - Barrington