Mount Desert Island, ME and Acadia National Park, Part 1

Hello Everyone! I’m finally getting a moment to write about our Maine trip. It’s been a busy week trying to get caught up with home chores, then we had my family reunion on Saturday. My brother was finally able to make it home, so all four of us were there which I know pleased our parents.

I’ll be dividing the trip up into two posts. The first one will be about the food and island adventures and the second will be about our time spent in Acadia.

We started our trip on Friday and drove about 9 hours to a town just east of Boston to avoid Friday afternoon traffic. Early the next morning we departed for Salem, MA. It was high on the priority list for my daughter to visit there. She is a big “Hocus Pocus” fan and Halloween is her favorite holiday (so she says). You can see she is wearing her witches dress in front of The Ropes Mansion which was Allison’s house in the movie. She had a list of places she wanted to photograph so we spent the early part of the morning doing that. By the time we parked near the downtown area, it was already getting crowded. We toured The Witch House where the witch trials were held and also toured the gardens in the back of the Ropes Mansion. We did a little shopping and Emily was not the only person dressed up. My husband and I didn’t know that was a thing. We were going to have lunch in town, but by that time, the town was so crowded, it took forever just to drive from block to block. We decided to have lunch a little further up the the road.

We found a place to eat on the water in Newburyport, MA, then got off onto the coast road (Route 1) just north of Portland. We thought we would have better views of the water following this road, but usually the only place it was in harbor towns. It was a pretty drive though and not boring like I95. We arrived on Mt Desert Island around 5:00. Here is a link to a map that will show you where the places I’m writing about are.

After stopping to pick up dinner, we arrived at our cottage in Southwest Harbor and had to take in the sunset view from the property. Our two bedroom cottage was on the harbor and we enjoyed sitting on the deck throughout the week when temperatures would allow.

Speaking of weather, we had cool nights and early mornings (40’s and low 50’s) with daytime temps between the mid 50’s and mid 60’s. Most days were cloudy to partly cloudy and we had one very rainy day and one overcast day where the mountains on the island were encased in clouds. The forecast changed dramatically from when I packed on Thursday to when we arrived on Saturday. Fortunately, I had lots of jackets and had brought a variety of clothes.

Of course, when you are in Maine, you have to eat the local food!

We started Sunday off with a brunch of Wild Maine Blueberry pancakes and they were yummy! We ate at Jordon’s Restaurant in Bar Harbor then went next door to buy groceries for the week. We fixed dinner most nights and made picnic lunches when we were out most of the time.

We did plan lunch in Bar Harbor on our shopping day and we had to have a Lobster Roll for lunch. This is the traditional way with a little mayo. Some places will also serve them with butter and lobster meat.

We had planned on Lobster one night and we were going to pick it up at the many, many lobster stands that are on the island when we found Beal’s Lobster Pier in Southwest Harbor. It was one of the piers that we could see from out cottage. I’ve had lobster a few times in restaurants, but this was the best that I’ve had. Probably just caught that day!

Another tradition that we didn’t pass up was eating at the Jordon Pond House in Acadia NP. They are famous for their popovers and tea. After our morning hike, we “popped” in to have a taste. We were there on the coldest and windiest day of the trip. They were delicious and the tea was tasty and warming. If you are making plans, you should try to make a reservation in advance. It was over and hour wait to eat inside, but because of the weather, we were able to get seated right away outside.

We had planned on Sunday being and easy day, but we decided to visit the Bass Harbor Head Light House since it was on our end of the island. The lighthouse is part of Acadia NP and has a very small parking lot. We waited about 10 minutes to park, then explored the main house, then walked out onto the cliffs to see it from there. We took time to drive around the west side of the island before heading back for the day.

Tuesday was the overcast day with some light mist on and off. That was the day we went to Bar Harbor to have lunch and do a little trinket shopping. The town was pretty busy but we were able to find a parking space about a half mile from the center of town.

One of the things we wanted to do was walk across the land bridge from Bar Harbor to Bar Island. Usually you can make this walk about one and a half hours before and after low tide. Not on the day we went though! We were ready to cross about one hour before low tide, but because of the small storm surge, we had to wait until low tide. While we waited, we watched the seagulls drop their crabs to crack them and played in the tide pools. In the picture above, we are on Bar Island looking towards Cadillac Mtn in the clouds.

The land bridge never fully opened up. There were too many people to take a picture crossing over to the island, but I was able to get one on the way back. We only stayed long enough to say we did it. I’m sure there were some people that got wet going back if they did the full hike around the island.

One of our favorite things to do is watch the sunrise and sunsets. Our sunrise was a bust, but we did manage to capture a couple of pretty sunset pictures.

I took this picture as we were leaving the Southwest Harbor on Wednesday evening. The picture doesn’t do justice to the stunning sunshine that was cast over the trees and boats in the harbor giving everything a golden glow. We had planned to go earlier that night but got delayed because we were talking to the owner of the cottage. We would have missed seeing this if we had left earlier. We did however miss the sunset that night.

On Friday, we made sure to go again and found a spot in Bass Harbor at the ferry terminal to watch the sunset. Again we saw the golden glow.

Watching the sunset was a great way to end out trip!

I’ll be back soon with Part 2 of our adventures in Acadia NP. Thanks so much for stopping by.

This entry was posted in Mountain Trips, National Parks, Travel, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Mount Desert Island, ME and Acadia National Park, Part 1

  1. Lydia says:

    Looks like y’all had a fabulous time. It is on our list to visit again and definitely stay longer. Look forward to the next installment!


  2. Helen says:

    Wow, lovely spot for a holiday


  3. Pingback: Maine and Acadia National Park, Part 2 | The Quilting Nook

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