A trail of islands and anchorages

The Maine Island Trail Association is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. Founded in 1988, MITA has evolved into the most extensive water trail system in North America, stretching some 350 miles from Cape Porpoise to Machias, Maine.

Divided into six distinct geographic regions along the Maine coast, the trail provides access to more than 150 islands and coastal waterfront properties through recreational use agreements with private landowners, towns, the state and the federal government. The association’s mission is not only to insure public access to these unique jewels of the Maine coast but also to preserve them by promoting environmental education, land conservation and volunteer stewardship.

Sites along the Maine Island Trail are primarily accessed by water and, while the state and federal sites are open to the public, many of the sites are privately owned and only accessible to MITA members. Many of these sites have long been popular with sea kayakers and small boats, but an increasing number of sites have also caught the attention of passagemakers and cruising sailors exploring the Maine coast. Conventional cruising guides still remain a solid resource for voyaging sailors when visiting the more popular ports and harbors, but MITA’s Stewardship Handbook and Guidebook (available only to members) opens up a whole new world of gunkholing for those sailors bent on exploring the unspoiled beauty of the state’s rugged coastline.

For more information visit www.mita.org.

By Ocean Navigator