April 30-May 5: Acadia National Park

We stayed 5 nights (our longest stretch so far) outside of Acadia National Park at a Boondockers Welcome location. We parked in the parking lot of a storage unit facility. Sounds boring but we were only about 10 minutes from the park!

We arrived late the first evening but the next morning we got to explore. We hiked around by a lake with perfectly clear water and mossy rocks.

For lunch we packed a picnic and checked out the rocky oceanside. We got a great laugh when Evie, who had put her sandwich on her knee between bites, was the victim of the Sinister Stealing Seagull! She had half of her PB&J left and that bird finished it off in less than 15 seconds! I thought for sure it was going to choke! The rest of the time we were there that seagull stayed in very close proximity to Evie, hoping for another lucky snack!

Dear friends of ours had recommended the popovers at Jordan Pond and the homemade blueberry pie at Quietside Cafe, so on the following day we sought these spots out. We struck out at Jordan Pond (They weren’t open yet since we arrived so early in the season) and when we found an empty storefront at Quietside we feared disappointment once again, but we soon discovered that they had moved to a new location…It was well worth the extra trouble! Scrumptious!!

Afterward we continued exploring the island, enjoying the rocky beaches and searching for shells. We hiked Flying Mountain and searched Sand Beach for shells…Creed even got in the frigid water! Interestingly, sandy beaches are a rarity in Maine due to gases that are trapped by the cold water. These gases cause the seashells to dissolve and since the coastlines are mainly made up of granite, they erode slowly. Here however, “Old Soaker,” a rock found offshore, redirects strong current into a pocket formed by a glacier. This captures shell fragments.

On our third morning in Maine, the kids and I hiked to a lighthouse (another item on our bucket list). It was fun seeing various plants and shells in between the rocks on the way there. We also hiked the Gorham Mountain Trail. There we discovered a memorial plaque bearing the name “Waldron Bates.” Born in Boston in 1856, Bates was responsible for many of the paths and trails around Bar Harbor Island (including Gorham Mountain trails). He was very active, but tragically died when he stepped off a train but slipped while trying to climb aboard again. Some of the cairns he built (typically two stones with a topper “table” stone, on which a smaller “pointer stone” is placed to direct hikers correctly along the path) can still be found today, albeit overgrown with moss.

We considered going up Cadillac Mountain one morning to see the first sunrise in the USA (actually it would have been *one of* the first sunrises), but we would have had to arrive around 3:30, so we decided to hike there for sunset instead!

On our final evening in Maine we grabbed ice cream from a local shop in Bar Harbor. Richard was on a phone call so I ran inside. One of the ice cream options was “Lobster.” ?? We had sought out lobster the whole time we were in Boston and Maine, but again, it was too early in the season so it was crazy expensive and therefore restaurants didn’t even bother selling it (One local told me a restaurant in another town was selling one lobster roll for OVER FORTY DOLLARS!!!) All that to say, when I spotted lobster ice cream, I texted Richard to see if he was game to try it. He was. Would you believe that he said it was some of the best ice cream he had ever had???! It was butter flavored ice cream with actual bits of lobster mixed in. Wow. Just wow. I didn’t share my husband’s opinion of the ice cream (at. all.) but I’m glad he was so pleased.

The infamous lobster ice cream

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