Crossing in to Maine we took a lot of the smaller county roads and experienced some amazingly scenic countryside. There was a lot of road ahead of us since we were trying to get as close to Acadia National Park as possible and start there as a home base to do some exploring. We made out first pit stop at the little town of Harrison, Maine.

Crystal Lake from the sky. There is a giant sign at the park stating that this space is for residents and taxpayers only. We pay taxes! That counts, right?

We pulled into the parking lot of a city park right next to Crystal Lake. It has a great park, a beach and small boat docks for water activities.

H L I docks at Crystal Lake Park in Harrison, Maine #gopro #djiphantom2 #aerialphotography #malimishfromtheair

There was actually a sign posted on a tree that this park was for Harrison city residents only but I just can’t help to try and imagine what could have happened here to have the city banned the use of their parks to travelers.

IMG_4206

IMG_4231

IMG_4216

IMG_4229

IMG_4225

The girls love swimming and it has been awhile since they got to. This was their chance. Let’s hope the mayor doesn’t show up to kick us out.

IMG_4235

Of course since we are in Maine, we have to dive our taste buds into some lobsters. A lot of friends have recommended places to get them so we did out best to sample as many as we can. At today’s lobster prices, it’s more like as many as we can afford.

IMG_5135

Being that it is smack in the middle of summer, Acadia National Park is really packed. Even though Maine is not particularly populated, Acadia is the closest National Park to some of the world’s most densely populated areas. And here is where they go in the summer.

IMG_4522

We didn’t even bother with campgrounds and went straight to the Elks Lodge in Ellsworth, Maine. It is just outside of Bar Harbor and wins for the smokiest bar at any Elks Lodge we’ve every been. On the positive side, we had a huge parking lot right next to some nice trees all to ourselves.

IMG_4421

One of the first things we did at Acadia National Park is to check out the coast and do some tide pooling.

IMG_4426

The rocks were a little slippery and tough to scramble on but we did see a few interesting things in the water. None of them include this dead crab shell that Mila found.

IMG_4442

IMG_4308

Here you get to see the first sunrise in the whole country so I assume this is also where it sets for the first time. Let’s just go with that.

IMG_4295

IMG_4309

IMG_4281

IMG_4283

On top of Cadillac Mountain in the park is really the place where people in the United States get to see the first rays of sun every day.

IMG_4490

 It is the highest peak in the park and furthest east so coming here to see the sun come up is actually a thing.

IMG_4459

We thought no one else is this crazy to drive up a windy road just to see the sun come up in the dark but I was clearly wrong.

IMG_4471

This place was packed and cars were parked illegally all over the road when we got to the top. And yes, the kids are grumpy this time of day. I don’t blame them. I am too.

IMG_4510

This is Sand Beach in Acadia National Park. The sand is made up largely of sea shells, sea urchin spines and pulverized local lime stone.

IMG_4511

You can pick up a handful of sand and looks closely to see all of the details.

IMG_4517

Even during the busy weekend, the park rangers gladly take the time to work with the girls to earn their Junior Ranger badges.

IMG_4521

The sometimes even make an announcement to the entire visitor center. This time they did it to a packed room full of hundreds of tourists which should explains the look on Ava’s face.

IMG_4411

At the Jordan Pond House in Acadia we were told that we must stop and eat one of their famous popovers. A popover is basically 10 cents worth of ingredients dropped into a piping hot oven so it poofs up like a cream puff sold for 4,000% profit. Sure it tastes pretty good with butter and jam but wouldn’t most things?

IMG_4380

We of course had to stop in Bar Harbor but finding parking for the van is pretty impossible. We eventually got lucky and found a tight spot to parallel park in.

IMG_4385

From Ellsworth we took a day and drove north further until we were basically a stone’s throw from New Brunswick at the mouth of the Bay of Fundy. We drove up the border alongside Passamaquoddy Bay just outside the border town of Calais to check out St. Croix Island International Historic Site.

IMG_4334

In 1604, an attempt to colonize this area by the French was attempted and ended up in failure.

IMG_4339

The harsh winter caused the expedition to run out of supplies and many became sick with what is believed to be scurvy. More than half of them perished that winter and the effort was abandoned.

IMG_4344

There is no public access to the island but an interpretive center helps visitors get a sense of what it was like that winter.

IMG_4359

Being that it is an International Historic Site, the uninhabited island is shared between the United States and Canada.

IMG_4362

Well, this was a Junior Ranger badge that most people probably wouldn’t make the drive for. It was totally worth the trip in my opinion.

IMG_4328

I know I might sound crazy but I kind of like this area more than Acadia.

IMG_4330

As we left Ellsworth, we started making our way south towards the shores of New Hampshire and eventually Massachusetts.

IMG_4263

Of course that is not until we get a couple more lobster rolls. These things are tasty but with its popularity, most prices have skyrocketed to nearly $20 a roll. If you try hard, you might still be able to find the elusive $5 roll but they won’t be around for long.

IMG_4556

We stopped for a work break after some driving to come to Fort Williams Park so we can get our hands on the famous lobster rolls from Bite into Maine.

IMG_4559

While I worked in the Airstream, Marlene took the kids to Goddard Mansion in Fort Williams park.

IMG_4540

Here is the Goddard information on the mansion if you Goddard feel like reading about it.

IMG_4541

IMG_4545

IMG_4578

IMG_4527

I did like these lobster rolls from Bite into Maine and they make them in all of the traditional styles. Just be ready to pony up some green backs for them.

IMG_4535

As we left Maine and crossed into New Hampshire again on our way to Massachusetts, we were contacted by a couple who aspires to travel with their kids so we planned a play date at Odiorne Point State Park.

IMG_4619

IMG_4620

This is Casey and Ashley with their boys. They were really awesome to hang out with. What is even more interesting is that we had been communicating with another traveling couple who is also from here that invited us to spend the night. It turns out that Casey was his college roommate. What a small world.

IMG_4623

This is Corey and Emily’s Westfalia Vanagon.

IMG_4635

They have been staying at Corey’s parent’s house which is a pretty amazing piece of property in the woods of New Hampshire.

IMG_4633

We only got to spend a night here with them but got to share lots of stories of the road.

IMG_4662

They are staying here making some more preparations to get back on the road and will be heading out once again when the weather gets too cold around here.

IMG_4658

Does anyone else have solar panel envy right now?

IMG_4639

Before we left to head south, Corey made us his signature pancakes. We also took a hike around the trail of the property where he spent many years as a child.

IMG_4627

The girls got to learn about salamanders and fern spores. And yes, they are wearing their Maid of the Mist ponchos. You can spot these southern California gals from a mile away!!

The girls got to learn about salamanders and fern spores thanks to kind folks of @wheresmyofficenow. And yes, they are wearing their Maid of the Mist ponchos. Haha. You can spot these southern California gals from a mile away!!

IMG_4651

We can already tell that the traffic is starting to jam up around here. We will soon be heading into some of the most crowded places in the country with our Airstream.

over and out,
dan

Categories: daily

0 Comments

Leave a Reply