New signage for the dog-friendly Penny’s Preserve in Blue Hill.


The Blue Hill Heritage Trust now has a new property next to Peter’s Brook called Penny’s Preserve. (The Bangor Daily News reported the opening of Penny’s Preserve on August 3, 2018.) The preserve features 3.25 miles of trails and dogs are allowed off leash within the boundaries of the preserve. We visited Penny’s Preserve to give you a dog lover’s perspective of the trails.

Parking is available in two locations: next to Peter’s Cove (near the entrance of the Peter’s Brook Trail), and at the entrance to the West Side Trail. If you enter Penny’s Preserve from the Peter’s Brook Trail, please keep in mind that dogs should be leashed on the Peter’s Brook Trail, but can be off leash once you reach the preserve. The “You Are Here” dot on the map below marks this location:

Click on photo to view in larger size.


These trail maps are located at several places along the trails so that you can see where you are. The trails are also marked with blue blazes:

Most of the trails are not strenuous or steep, and are similar to the Peter’s Brook Trail to the waterfall, which you may be familiar with. The Peter’s Brook Trail is wide, and it’s easy to let other hikers and dogs pass.

Peter’s Brook Trail – please keep dogs leashed on this trail.


Here’s a peek at some of the Penny’s Preserve Trails:

A dog’s eye-level view of the trail shows that many areas are relatively flat.
Much of the trail is coated with soft pine needles, interspersed with rocks and moss.

We visited the preserve between 4 and 5 pm on a Monday, and encountered one other hiker (with a dog, who we weren’t quick enough to catch a photo of). Since Penny’s Preserve is only newly open to the public, we aren’t sure how well this reflects a typical day’s traffic on the trails – and keep in mind that weekends may be busier.

The Quarry Loop is a rougher, clearly less-traveled trail. It has steeper sections and areas where the path crosses tumbled granite blocks. This section may be too difficult for older dogs, but most normal to active dogs should be just fine. The views of the quarry are well worth the climb to get to them.

The Quarry Loop Trail is steeper and rockier than the other trails in the preserve.

Dog walking ettiquette reminders:

  1. Please obey posted signs for leashed and off-leash areas whenever you are out and about with your dog. Even one bad experience with an off-leash dog in a leashed only area can have traumatic consequences for others.
  2. Please pick up after your dog when they do their business! Not only is it yucky to see other dogs’ waste, it can be a health hazard, too.
  3. If you see a dog with a yellow leash, harness, or ribbon, give them space. Not sure what this means? Read our article about the Yellow Dog Project.
  4. Even if the other dogs you see don’t have a yellow ribbon or equipment, be polite to your fellow dog owners and make sure your dog is either securely leashed or returns to you on cue in the presence of other dogs. Even if your dog is friendly, they can get into trouble running up to another unknown dog.

And most of all, enjoy your time outdoors with your 4-Paw friends!