Adrian Scott of Mount Desert Island cross-country skis near the Eagle Lake carriage road entrance in Acadia National Park in January 2019. PHOTO COURTESY OF FRIENDS OF ACADIA

Cross-country skiing on MDI

Brett Binns pulls a groomer on a section of the bike path in Schoodic Woods in Acadia National Park in February 2021.

SOUTHWEST HARBOR — The Southwest Harbor Public Library will host an online presentation and discussion about cross-country skiing on Mount Desert Island on Tuesday, Jan. 25 at 5:30 p.m., with guidebook author Hope Rowan, skier and trail groomer Mark Fernald, Friends of Acadia Conservation Manager Paige Steele and Acadia National Park Hiking Trails Foreman Gary Stellpflug. 

The presentation will share favorite trails and give an inside look at the volunteer-supported trail grooming program sponsored by the Friends of Acadia. 

Rowan is a Southwest Harbor author and cartographer who has written “Ten Days in Acadia: A Kids’ Hiking Guide to Mount Desert Island” and “Ten Days in the North Woods.” Rowan is a moderator for Facebook group Ski MDI. She creates and designs maps and teaches children about maps as a certified Geographic Information Systems Professional. Her first tent camping in Maine was in a crib and she was introduced to the trails of Acadia from her father’s shoulders. 

Fernald is a fisherman from Little Cranberry Island and Bar Harbor. He has skied on the island for 50 years and has been a volunteer trail groomer for 20. Many skiers will cross paths with him as he reliably skis multiple hours a day.  

Steele is the conservation manager for Friends of Acadia and coordinates the volunteer groomers who groom the snow for classic and skate skiing on the Acadia Carriage Roads. Steele manages many of the Friends of Acadia youth engagement and volunteer programs, such as Acadia Quest, Outdoor Classrooms, Urban and Diverse Youth, Summit Stewards, Recreation Technician, Stewardship Volunteers and the Acadia Winter Trails Association.  

Stellpflug is the hiking trails foreman at Acadia National Park and has been working there in many capacities since the early 1970s. He began his devotion to cross-country skiing on wooden skies, long before grooming began. His zeal was especially backcountry, off trail, with many attempts at appearing like he had mastered linking Telemark turns on the open ledges. 

Register for the online program at For more information, call the library at (207) 244-7065 or email [email protected]  

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