Where is Reid State Park
A good portion, if not all, of the lower border of the state of Maine is butted against the Atlantic Ocean. Reid State Park resides on the southeastern side of Georgetown Island which is found in the South-Central part of the state's coast alongside the other islands, peninsulas, and inlets that line the southernmost region of Maine. For those traveling by car, the park is about 32 minutes from nearby Brunswick and if you head towards the park from Portland, it is just under an hour.
How Big is Reid State Park
Reid State Park comes in at 770-acres, or 310ha, that spans across a unique stretch of coastline found in Maine's many islands. Since Reid US State Park sits right on the ocean, the highest elevation is only about 59 feet. There are two sandy beaches featured at the park, one about a mile long, the other approximately half a mile in length, aptly named Mile and Half Mile Beach. There are 3.54 miles of trails that wrap around the marshes, bogs, and rivers across the park.
Reid State Park Weather
The state of Maine has a varied and humid climate. The weather can be severe and unexpected, especially along the southern stretch of the state where Reid State Park happens to be located. The summers are considered to be some of the most comfortable in the United States, with an average temperature high of 70 degrees in the peak of July. Temperatures can plummet during the winter with the lowest average temperature of 12 degrees in January. The majority of snow typically falls from the months of November to February. The state of Maine averages around 200 sunny days throughout the entire year. While tornados, thunderstorms, and cyclones are typically rare and destructive, when they do appear, they typically affect the southern portion of the state.
When did Reid State Park Become a Park
In 1940 the Maine State Parks Commission submitted a report stating various park needs they had at the time, which included obtaining bathing beaches. Businessman and local Maine native Walter E. Reid the oceanfront land that sat near his home on Georgetown Island to fulfill the Commission's stated needs. Since then the park has been adapted to fit the state's ever-changing needs.
Things to do in Reid State Park
The main reason that people visit Reid State Park is to see the unique sandy beaches, dunes, and tidal pools all with the majestic ocean views with the New England backdrop. Our State Park Visitors Guide created this list that will briefly go over the various activities available at the park.
There are a series of trails that you can navigate through portions of Reid State Park, with a total of 3.54 miles that navigate around the various natural features within the park. You can also walk along the approximate mile and a half long beach.
As long as the weather and temperature are cooperative, there are a few areas within Reid State Park that allow swimming. Some of the areas are lifeguarded, including a lagoon and a portion of the ocean beach. There are safety suggestions for young children and weak swimmers due to the unpredictable nature of the ocean.
Because of the unique beaches, dunes, and other habitats there is the opportunity to see a large and varied amount of wildlife all across Reid State Park, some of the most notable of the available wildlife are various endangered shorebirds such as terns and piping plovers.
Cross Country Skiing
Because of the large amounts of snow that are common to fall within the region near Reid State Park during the long Maine winters, there is the opportunity to take up cross country skiing across the miles of trails that are found within the park.
Surfing is also another activity that is available to the visitors that are willing to strike out into the powerful ocean and brave the breaking waves. Because of the limited spaces within the parking lot, there is only a limited number of people that can be in the park at one time, leaving the beaches mostly uncrowded at any given time.
When to go to Reid State Park
There aren't as many year-round opportunities available when visiting Reid State Park compared to some larger state parks around the country. This is mostly due to the size of the park and the intensity of potential weather conditions during the later months of the year. Oftentimes the best time to visit Reid State Park is between the months of June and August, the temperatures will be the most comfortable and you will have the best chance of having pleasant weather conditions, you will have to deal with biting bugs when hiking near the marshes and river. Once Fall bleeds into winter the temperatures and weather will become increasingly uncomfortable which will keep the majority of people away if you enjoy hiking, cross country skiing, and exploring in cold conditions.
Must-Have Things to Bring to Reid State Park
It’s possible to visit Reid State Park with only the clothes on your back and whatever you can fit in your pockets; however, List of Parks has outlined the following list of gear which will allow you to have the most enjoyable time possible when visiting the park.
While there are swimming opportunities during the warmer months, this part of the Atlantic Ocean is not known for being warm and inviting. Be sure to pack whatever swimsuits and flotation devices that will ensure a comfortable swimming experience, investing in a wetsuit or other gear to keep you warm can be well worth the cost when swimming the cold waters.
Since there are no restaurants or vendors within the limits of Reid State Park you will have to bring your own food and beverages during your stay. Be mindful of what you leave behind after your stay to ensure the limited impact on the sensitive nature of the local ecosystem.
Cross Country Skis and Gear
During the snowy months, especially November through January, visitors that are interested can navigate the miles of trails within Reid State Park while on cross country skis, be sure to watch the weather and prepare any necessary gear to prevent any injuries and ensure a quality time skiing.
Weather Appropriate Clothing
The weather and climate conditions can change in a matter of minutes any time of the year, and while this can be in your favor during your visit to Reid State Park, be sure to bring enough types of clothing that can handle the changing weather.
The amount of surfing gear you bring with you to surf Reid State Park should not only allow you to take advantage of the rolling waves but do so safely. Be sure to bring gear that will keep you warm, in control, and able to return another day.
Binoculars and Animal Watching Journal
While you will be able to see the plethora of animals and birds that call Reid State Park home, binoculars will allow you to see and identify them from a safer distance that won’t disturb them as much. A journal is also handy to keep track of the species you see and their behavior.
Bug Spray and Anti-bug Gear
For those visiting in the warmer months, especially late spring and early summer, the bugs can be nearly unbearable from the massive amounts of standing water they use for their life cycles. Bug spray and clothing designed to keep bugs off of you can ensure you can enjoy the scenery without being pestered.
Where to Stay in Reid State Park
As it currently stands, Reid State Park has no campsites or opportunities for camping of any kind anywhere in the park. However, there are a few nearby places you can stay that will allow you to not only be able to have quick and easy access to the park, but that will give you the ability to see more of Maine's scenery. The closest place to stay is a short 4-minute drive from the park.
Food Nearby Reid State Park
Reid State Park has no restaurants, but they allow you to bring food into the park as long as you practice "leave no trace" and pick up after yourself when you leave. However, there are a few restaurants, both year-round and seasonal, on the same island as Reid State Park, the closest one being a small 9-minute drive from the park.
Airports Near Reid State Park
Since being located on the edge of a small island, Reid State Park doesn’t have any airports that are immediately located nearby. However, there are a series of airports on the surrounding mainland and islands of various sizes. The nearest airport is a decent 36-minute drive, while the closest large airport is just over an hour drive away from the park.