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The maine event - acadia

Posted 09-23-2012 at 11:14 AM by TAKINBETZ

9/3/12

We left Gorham NH on Route 3 heading to Maine and the drive was absolutely beautiful. The road stretches out before you, undulating long sweeps up and long sweeps down.

As we came through Rumsford Falls, there was a truck in a pull off selling Moose Horns. Dave thought they would look good on the front of the RV!

BAAH HAABAAH(Bar Harbor)
Arrived in Baah Haabaah around 2:30.

Apparently the only way to get to Blackwood’s Campground in the Acadia National Park is through the town of Baah Haabaah and it was packed. The downtown area is several blocks long and full of restaurants, B&B’s, stores of all kinds and people.

Cars were parked on both sides of the street making the passage narrow. Somehow Dave managed to get through the area without sideswiping anyone’s mirrors off!

It became less populated heading out to Mount Dessert Island and we entered the Acadia National Park. Blackwoods CG is on the Atlantic Ocean near Seal Harbor.

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Our first night took us downtown Baah Haabaah to a waterside restaurant on the pier. We were looking for lobsters! Well we found them.

Knowing that the prices of lobsters is quite depressed, the prices in the restaurants have not come down.

I found it hard to order a 1 1/4# lobster with drawn butter, boiled new potatoes, corn on the cob and corn bread for $34, when I can make it in Vermont for $8 max! SO, we compromised and got lobster bisque for $11, Clam Chowder for $8 and shared a seafood appetizer. With two beers it came to a grand total of $54 with tip!

We’ll look harder for lobsters next time!

9/4/12

We scoped out Acadia taking the loop road around the park and to the top of Cadillac Mountain.

Caddilac Mountain at 1500’ is one half the height of Mt Ascutney, one quarter the height of Mt Washington and five times the height of Mt Dora (in FLA)! It served up beautiful views of Bar Harbor and the surrounding water with their islands.

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The coast of in this part of Maine is craggy with fingers of land forming harbors and inlets. What has always impressed me is the ancient formations of these rocks. Glaciers formed the undulating land; five hundred million years ago sedentary rocks formed at the bottom of the sea and these were transformed into layers which were exposed.

We exited the park to get some gas and find lunch. This time we stopped at a Lobster Pound where we ordered our lobsters and they steamed them right there. So, for $7.95/lb (cooked) we ordered two lobsters, three drawn butters, one order of cole slaw and two ice teas for $30. Better than last night but still can get these cheaper in New Hampshire!

I hope that the Lobstermen are getting some benefit from these prices because the restaurants aren’t cutting any breaks on their famous seafood!

I overhead a couple of people talking on top of Caddilac Mountain who must own lobster boats because she said a cruise ship due in had ordered 3,000 lobsters to help the local economy. I guess they had spent the whole night before getting it ready. Said they had 600 left.

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BAR HARBOR
At the turn of the century this was an exclusive “summer colony” for the New York, Philadelphia, Boston wealth It entered a decline around WWI and the Great Depression and WWII. However in 1947 there was a great fire that raged from October 21st to the 25th with a massive wind shift of 65 mph spreading the fire throughout the area surrounding Bar Harbor destroying a large portion of Bar Harbor.

Many of the great summer cottages were destroyed and not rebuilt, the town survived and became more accessible to the general population (all of whom were here Labor Day) and Bar Harbor with Acadia is an international destination.
ISSAC ARRIVES

The weather started to come in and the skies were graying. We drove up to Northeast Harbor, one of the wealthiest residential areas on the island. After the fire of 1947, this area became a mecca for the rich and famous to rebuild their summer cottages. The multi-million dollar homes are set back from the road and perched on top of the cliffs overlooking the harbor. There are no street addresses, rather residents named their homes, Windward, Turning Point, Serenity, Summerplace.

Quiet evening at the CG. Rain bands came in all night and it poured. Sometime during the night I heard a trap snap! Got one! I have a feeling these hitchhikers will make it all the way to Florida!!!!

September 5th .... Remnants of ISSAC came through with heavy rains and some wind creating a gloomy Maine day. A cruise ship was in the harbor so we figured the streets, restaurants and shops would be full of cruisers, so took a drive around Mt Desert Island to all the little towns and harbors along the way.

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Southwest Harbor, the “land of the rich”, we skipped. Headed down to Northeast Harbor which is more of a working harbor. We stopped for lunch at a lobster pound in a little town of Bernard and we’re getting the jist of the lobster pounds.

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Pick a lobster running around $8.50/lb and any sides run $2 unless you get the dinner which has cole slaw, corn on the cob and blueberry bread for $30. The steamers were right out front and the lobsters were waiting to be cooked!

Many, many years ago when I was camping in Maine, I saw a pile of wooden lobster traps for sale alongside the road. I stopped and bought two, $5 each, and brought them home, cleaned them up, scraped off the barnacles and had glass tops put on them to make coffee tables. I had these for years, finally ending up in Florida as planters in my gardens before the sun took its toll on the wood.

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Today your lobster trap table would be green or yellow plastic covered metal. It may be practical, but not as charming as the weathered wooden ones. I do want to bring home some of the wooden buoys to hang on my porch. Those are still charming.

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Visited Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse which is a private residence manned by the US Coast Guard. You can walk down to the lighthouse and see the craggy shore. Unfortunately the lighthouse was being repaired and covered with scaffolding so didn’t make a great “lighthouse picture”.

We stopped at a working wharf to see how much the lobsters were. Crates of salt dried herring were sitting alongside the walls to be sold to the fishermen as bait. A boat was unloading for the day and the forklift truck was heading down the dock to pick up some crates. We can pick up fresh lobsters for $5.45/lb which is the cheapest I’ve seen them. That’s the retail price and it’s a deal!


Last night I walked over to the Amphitheater for the Ranger’s Talk. They have a very large screen and speaker system. The program was on Art in Nature and very interesting. Paintings dating back to the mid-1800’s of Acadia scenes were discussed. Acadia has always been a great draw for artists because if its majestic shoreline and mountains that drop to the sea. It was a great way to end a day.

0906 – MAINELY HANGIN’ AROUND


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With Hurricane Leslie coming up the coast, we took a drive over to Thunderhole to see if the waves were kicking up. As we were standing there, we could hear the roar of the waves as they came into the “hole”.

The Ranger said that during the height of August season last year, a hurricane came up the coast creating huge swells. There were 10,000 people parked on both sides of the road walking all over Thunderhole. Several were swept out to sea to be rescued but a child didn’t make it. Today people were ducking under the barricades to get closer to the water. Idoits!

I learned that our Cadillac was named after Cadillac Mountain. Yellowstone was the first National Park and Acadia was the first National Park east of the Mississippi. Cadillac Mountain is the highest peak on the east coast.


Champlain came down and discovered Acadia I think by crashing into Mt Desert. He wanted it for France and that meant wars...of course. Acadia is made up of Isle of Haute (pretty tall in French), Schoodic Penninsula and Mt Dessert. Schoodic Penninsula was donated by two sisters who didn’t want it to be named anything French. The head of the NP Service suggested Acadia and they were happy …. guess they didn’t know it was French.

We decided to spend the afternoon downtown in Bar Harbor. Picked up a boxed lunch of lobster rolls, clam chowder and blueberry pie and sat down on the water at the harbor to eat lunch. Dave caught up on emails as we have no phone or mifi service out at the CG, and I walked around town to see what I could buy!

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Walked back around to the harbor and we left to find the brewery we saw the other day. Stopped in, had some tastings, and headed back to Blackwoods. Took the scenic route back through Acadia National Park Loop Road. It was beautiful.
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