I have researched the CRAP out of Acadia National Park. I have created an Itinerary, budgeted, and created a plan. I, my best friend (Morgan), My Boyfriend, and his three friends are all going (5 total, not including myself). That being said, I have the most experience out of all of them... combined. They are all very smart people, but some of them have not even used a tent before or own a pair of tennis shoes. 

I am concerned about guiding these "newcomers" to the outdoors, my biggest concern is equipment and safety. I have been to a total of 6 national parks so far and my longest stay was 7 months (best time of my life!). I have equipment that ranges on the more expensive side as I need it to be durable and last a long time. My friends do not have such gear and since they are not avid outdoor people, they are not willing to drop $100-300 on hiking shoes alone for a single trip. 

I am hoping for some suggestions for hiking/camping equipment that will last the 7 days we are in the national park but not empty their wallets. We plan on hammock/tent camping, hiking all of the iron rung trails, and going to the beach a few times. 

I am also NOT a trail guide and have no experience what so ever! When I hike and camp it is usually solo or with another experienced camper/hiker. Could you send some hiking and camping safety tips for a group of 6 people, with little knowledge of the outdoors? I want to return with all 6 of us! I was considering two-way radios, but I wondering if this is a worthy purchase. 

Also, if anyone has been to Acadia National Park, TIPS ARE WELCOME!!!

Thank you in advance! So excited!

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Wow what an exciting trip you have planned!  While I am sure we have some “Green Vests” and Community users that would love to offer some advice, I think those in your group who still need gear would really benefit from a virtual outfitting . With our stores currently closed, it really is the best way to get that personal one on one service that many novice campers/hikers need to make them feel ready for this new adventure!

I know you mentioned having done a ton of research, I’m not sure if as a result you have stumbled on our National Parks page, but there are actually a few conversations like this one that might prove to be helpful!

Lastly, here are a few articles that help cover some of the camping basics , essential gear , and a solid day hikers checklist .

Hope this helps keep you guys moving in the right direction as you finish planning your trip! Thanks for reaching out to the Community!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Awesome! Thank you! 

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
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@HoughtonLikeTheLake When do you plan to visit?

This currently on the park website  

All park roads, facilities and services closed to slow spread of coronavirus (COVID-19)

One would trust this situation will not last long and the park visitor center will be open to provide solid info on current conditions.  I like Acadia in the early fall, the best time to visit a good many areas, in order to view the fall foliage.

A decent fist aid kit is fundamental; be prepared to deal with blisters and similar owies which are common to "tenderfeet" (appropriate term).  Does anyone in the group possess first aid training?  no usually necessary, but can often prove useful.

The kindly rangers in the Visitor Center are your friends, able to provide current, timely info on trails and trips.  You can even contact them in advance of your trip, once facilities are open for info before arriving in the park.

It would cost more, but you can stay outside the park and avoid camping altogether and the associated equipment hassles if some of your party desired. Acadia is not exactly raw, screaming wilderness.  I doubt that expensive, dedicated hiking boots are necessary for most of the trails you are contemplating.

Not sure hwat your equipment needs are , beyond your personal stash...

I am not an REI employee, but as a retired NPSers with more than 40 years service, and currently a volunteer with projects, I thought I might post...

Trust the rangers.  They speak with straight tongue!


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@hikermor Thanks! We are planning on going at the End of August, hopefully it will be open!

Wow, 40 years in NPS! That’s pretty cool! 
Thank you for the advice and the help! 

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.