Hike, Bike & Write

July 1 - 7, 2018

Writers need a strange blend of time alone to work and reflect and inspiring experiences, precisely what you’ll find at College of the Atlantic’s summer writing workshop, “Hike, Bike & Write,” a program for nonfiction authors. Each participant will workshop 10-to-20 pages of prose over the course of the week with a class capped at 12. We’ll foray into spectacular Acadia National Park with a professional naturalist on foot or via bicycle for inspiration for personal essays, literary travel pieces and more. This course will also offer plenty of opportunity for educators seeking continuing education credits to learn more about the biology, ecology, and wildlife of Maine.

Students should be prepared for moderate physical activity. Bicycles will be provided (or bring your own). Price includes workshop, all meals, lodging, rental bicycle and four-weeks of additional feedback from the instructor via email for prose started during the COA program.

Hike, Bike & Write itinerary

Workshop Leader and Outdoor Guide

Workshop leader Mary Collins worked as a freelance writer and editor for more than 20 years in Washington, DC for National Geographic, the Smithsonian and other organizations and taught part-time for 12 years at Johns Hopkins MA in writing program. She is currently a full professor of creative writing at Central Connecticut State University, where she won the Teaching Award. Her essays and books have received national awards and starred reviews from Kirkus. Her fifth nonfiction book was recently published with Beacon Books and she has an anthology of flash nonfiction coming out in 2018 with Persea Books. To learn more about her, visit her website at www.marycollinswriter.com.

Outdoor guide Rich MacDonald is a veteran naturalist and sea kayak instructor. As an avid birder, Rich has studied the natural world for organizations including The Nature Conservancy and Audubon. His studies encompassed Lake Champlain’s colonial waterbirds, northern forest boreal birds from the Adirondacks to Newfoundland, and migratory songbirds in the Dominican Republic. Beginning with a 1982 class in Eskimo rolling techniques, Rich has been kayaking northern latitude rivers, lakes, and oceans. In 1989 he started teaching kayaking skills and in 2002 co-lead, along with his now-wife Natalie Springuel, the five-month Gulf of Maine Expedition, an educational sea kayak journey that explored the natural world of this international watershed. If Rich’s voice sounds familiar, you may have heard him on National Public Radio’s A Prairie Home Companion. He serves as lead naturalist on each of the chartered cruises of the radio show.  He lives in Bar Harbor with Natalie and his nine-year-old daughter, Anouk.

2018 Rates 

Early Bird Rates (end 2/28/18)

Tuition single room $1,830
Tuition shared room $1,730
Commuter $1,370


Regular Rates

Tuition single room $1,930
Tuition shared room $1,830
Commuter $1,470


Fees include

  • Room and board: breakfast, lunch and dinner in COA’s award winning dining hall (box lunches for day trips)
  • All activity fees: Acadia National Park Weekly Pass ($70), transportation for all guided field and boat trips into Acadia and to the Schoodic Peninsula, bicycle rental (if needed)
  • Four-weeks of additional feedback from the instructor via email for prose started during the COA program.

Refund policy

  • Partial refunds will be considered in the event of a documented health or family emergency.

  • The $150 deposit and $50 application fees due at registration are non-refundable.

  • All refunds will be paid by check.