Tag Archives: National Park

2018 – Sightseeing Schoodic Peninsula Maine and area

After our active week at Bar Harbor this has been a wonderfully quiet week. We have been on the “quiet side” of Acadia National Park, on the Schoodic Peninsula of Maine. Our campsite is just a few minutes walk from the visitors station and Island Explorer Bus stop. This bus goes around the Island stopping at several points to allow visitors to get off, stay awhile, and then catch another bus to continue exploring. We enjoyed the scenery, especially at Schoodic Point. The route includes a stop in the small village of Winter Harbor where we looked in the five and dime store and a had a sundae at the local restaurant. The local event of the week was the town’s Lobster Festival which included craft booths, food trucks, a lobster dinner that we enjoyed, and lobster boat races. The lobster boats used in the races are the real deal, although I think the engines are souped up a bit. I loved seeing the waves crash on the rocks at the coast but my best memories will will be the times we sat out at night seeing the shooting stars on the clear nights we had here.

See individual photos with captions here.

2018 – Mt Desert Narrows Camping – Bar Harbor, ME

This was our first visit to Bar Harbor, Maine and Acadia National Park. The area has three Thousand Trails – Trails Collection campgrounds. My first choice was Narrows Too because it has full hookup sites and is known for its larger campsites. From my earliest booking window it was full for the time we wanted to be there. Another option was Patten Pond which is a bit farther out from the National Park. I could have gone there, but really wanted to be able to ride the shuttle and avoid some of the traffic that makes driving anywhere sluggish in this popular tourist area. That left me with Mt Desert Narrows which is the closest to Bar Harbor.

This campground has a variety of campsites, including an impressive tent camping area right on the bay. There are also back-in water/electric sites on the water but they are packed in with neighbors right on top of each other. Up away from the water there’s a large section of full hookup sites, some 30 and some 50 amp. Unfortunately for us, none of these sites were currently available to people who come in on the Trails Collection program.

However, we were given a nice, grassy water/electric 50 amp “parallel parking” site near the activity center and pool. Really, no complaints. We had neighbors in front and behind us but there was room for parking, etc. Our front lawn was somewhat narrow with the road passing by. Again, no complaints. The pool is heated, making it nice even on cooler days. The staff was always friendly and helpful. We enjoyed free ice cream one afternoon and when I asked someone if my fire pit could be cleaned the fellow cheerfully stopped right then and took care of it for me.

We really enjoyed having the Island Explorer Shuttle stopping right at the campground. Using the shuttles we could make connections to downtown Bar Harbor and most of the famous spots in the park. We had to drive up to the summit of Cadillac Mountain because the shuttles don’t go there. Aside from that the pickup was left parked except for a couple of trips to the grocery and for church on Sunday.

The campground WiFi was decent and several sites have cable TV. We happily used their WiFi but I sat up the satellite dish so we could watch the Astros games (for some reason the local channels fail to air our Houston team, what’s up with that?). I had a weaker but usable 4G Verizon signal.

I think on a future trip I would again try to get a spot at Narrows Too just to have FHU but otherwise I would return to Mt Desert Narrows, no complaints.

See individual photos with captions here.

2018 – Sightseeing Acadia National Park and area

We enjoyed our week near Bar Harbor, Maine where we focused on seeing the Mount Desert Island section of Acadia National Park. The Island Explorer bus stopped at our campground so we had easy access to Bar Harbor and the National Park. There are many shops and eating places of all kinds around Bar Harbor. Mount Desert Island is full of history and the scenery is amazing. Again, our focus was on the national park. Sand Beach is beautiful and I loved seeing and hearing the waves crashing in the rocks. At Jordan Pond restaurant we dined on their famous popovers with butter and jam. After eating we walked down to the pond. The water is very clear and the view of Jordan Lake was great. The Bubble Rocks out across the Lake complete the beautiful scenery. We took one half day to drive up Cadillac Mountain to see the views that include the outer islands off in the distance. We wanted to get there early as this this a major attraction in the park and parking is limited. We arrived about nine am and not many people were there because of the fog and no view whatsoever. We looked around the gift shop and then walked on out to the ledge trail, found a comfortable spot and waited for the fog to lift. As the fog cleared the islands off in the distance and far below us came in to view. During the winter months Cadillac Mountain is the first United States real estate to see the sun rise. Later we drove a scenic route, exploring portions of Mount Desert that are outside of the national park. We found a beautiful spot along Somes Sound where we enjoyed some quiet time, soaking in the beauty. Not too far from our campground we visited a L.L. Bean Store and enjoyed looking around, even though it wasn’t the main store. We enjoyed our experience here and can see why it has been a vacation spot for all ages through the years. I’ll have more to write about Arcadia next week as we are going to spend the week on the Schoodic Peninsula, which some people call the “unvisited” part of Acadia National Park.

See individual photos with captions here.