Saturday, July 29, 2017

Crawford Notch, New Hampshire

Returning to New Hampshire

We had driven through Crawford Notch six weeks ago while heading to Maine and thought it would be a good place to spend more time in the future if we got the chance. We got the chance and took it staying a campground in the White Mountains without internet or TV reception. It was raining hard the first day we arrived. There were too many hiking trails to choose from and just a few miles up the road from us. Once the rain broke, we headed out.
Someone took some time and effort collecting rocks to make some rock art along the Saco River Trail.

 Wiley House family homestead

We were able to combine trails to make a good hike with elevation climbs of 1000 feet in a mile.

Tough Frankenstein Cliffs hike

 The road goes through the bottom of the Notch which means the trails all go up. But they were pleasant walks with nice payoffs of views and waterfalls. There were plenty of boulders and slick roots which made us appreciate the hiking poles keeping us upright.
 What a great treat as we reached the summit.

This was a good stop for us to spend some time before heading out west again.


Crawford Rail Station at the trailhead

The top is where we had the view.

Appalachian Trail is so steep and traverses the summit of these mountains. 

One more waterfall, Riley Falls

We have spent the past 6 weeks in Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine and have not seen a single moose. I guess, we were sleeping in. 

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Mt Desert Island, Maine


Slowing down for a while

Our plans changed as we left Raymond, Maine earlier than we had planned. We could continue on to Quebec City, Canada a few weeks earlier than we had planned. Lubec or Campobello or the Maritime Provinces sounded interesting. We had been to Acadia National Park 13 years ago and thought this would be a good place to spend the next 9 days regrouping.
We took it easy our first few days on Mt Desert Island with a drive to Bar Harbor. This is cruise ship season. They dock just beyond the island in the picture and are tendered into the town. This day was a small ship with 700 passengers and the town was packed. I can't imagine how congested it is when two larger ships arrive later in the season.

You never know if you will have sunshine or fog.

Glooscap ("Good Spirit") is a wooden sculpture of a North American.
Seawall Picnic area in the southwest island was a great stop to check out the tide pools and watch the fog rolling across the bay.

Bass Harbor lighthouse
 We headed over to the carriage trails for a bike ride a couple of mornings. Between 1913 and 1940, John D. Rockefeller, Jr., financed and directed the construction of 57 miles of Carriage Roads for the use of hikers, bikers, horse riders, and horse-drawn carriages on the island.
 Carriage road bridges, no cars here.

 A stop at Eagle Lake
Acadia National Park's Island Explorer, a shuttle bus, is a great way to get around the island. We had ridden our bikes further than we had planned wanting to see what was around the next corner repeatedly. I voted to catch the shuttle part of the way back to our parking spot. I asked a young lady for a little help since she had a shuttle map and didn't want to end up even further from the truck than we already were. She is also a camp nurse 15 minutes from where we were in Raymond. She had driven 3 hours to Acadia on her day off . We had a quick but fun visit on the way to our drop off at Bubble Pond. I hope her drive back was easy and uneventful.
 Jordan Pond House

Helmet hair
 Jordan Pond House has been serving popovers and tea since the 1890s. We remembered how good they were on our last visit. We arrived in time for seafood chowder to go with those popovers for lunch.

Bubble Mountains beyond Jordan's Pond

 Sculpture made from mussels

 Top of Cadillac Mountain View. I can't believe we rode our bike up here when we were last here 13 years ago.
We stopped at Parson's Fish Market for scallops to go with our salads and cioppino soup.
We caught the bus early on our last day to beat the crowds along the Ocean Trail from Sand Beach to Otter Point.
Beehive Trailhead is across the road from Sand Beach and was calling our names.

It does look like a beehive and that is where we were headed.
 View from the top.
The freezer is full of blueberries and there was plenty to keep us busy and happy during our ten days here. It is pretty nice to be back on our time schedule and do or not, whatever we would like each day.

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