Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Acadia National Park
This was day one of our visit to Acadia National Park. The first national park east of the Mississippi, it is 49, 000 acres that preserves the rugged coastal environment of Maine. It is also the first national park where all the land was donated by private citizens. Many of the highlights of the park can be seen by driving the loop road and hiking along some of the many paths within the park.
Our first stop was to head to the top of Cadillac Mountain and enjoy the panoramic views. This is the highest peak on the eastern seaboard. The views and hiking trails give you a great overview of the park. After stopping at Sand Beach, the only beach in the park, we continued along the loop road stopping at a number of coastal view overlooks including the Thunder Hole, where a combination of tide and current can create huge geysers.
Our master plan included bracing the large crowds and having a Maine Lobster lunch at the Jordan Pond. The traditions at the pond restaurant date to the late 1800’s when the heavy hitters of the industrial giants built summer homes in the area, including the Rockefellers. Anneke had already picked up the menu at a gift shop and was ready to order. As we walked into the restaurant, we were surprised with the lack of activity until we were informed that they had lost power as soon as they opened several hours earlier. Plan B was to head back to the motorhome for lunch. One of the few times we decided not to bring a picnic lunch.
There will be lots more to see and do including the carriage roads built so the wealthy could use their horse and buggies on their property. Even today, only hiking, biking and horses can be used on these roads.