This week, we visited Acadia National Park and the White Mountain National Forest. We decided for a last minute trip with the in-laws of the two areas. Booking last minute, needing two rooms, in Bar Harbor is difficult, but the Days Inn was good enough. We got in to town for a late lunch Saturday and went to the Finback, a place we ate at more than once two years ago when visiting. Following lunch we stopped by the Wild Gardens for a little hike on Jesup Path. Then we proceeded along the Park Loop Road to Schooner Head Lookout. We walked down for nice views of the coast, and Nolan and I went down to view the little cave. Then we stopped at Sand Beach. After enjoying a bit, we headed back in to town for some dinner. We walked around a bit and ended up at Lompoc. We ate here a couple years ago as well.
Sunday we first headed up Mt. Cadillac. The views were great! There was still some fog sitting over parts of the ocean. Next was Thunder Hole. The tide was out a bit, but it was still making some good loud booms for us. After some lunch at The Thirsty Whale we headed back out. Kacey, Nolan, and Liana went to spend some time at Sand Beach, while I drove Colin, Mike, and Maggie around a few more sites. We stopped at Otter Cove and the nearby overlooks for great views of the coast. Then after a quick stop at Seal Harbor, we went to Jordan Pond. The pond and surrounding mountains really looked amazing in the afternoon sun. I also cooled off with the local Old Soaker Blueberry Soda. After picking up everyone at the beach, we went in for dinner at the Bar Harbor Lobster Company. Everyone enjoyed their dinner! Unfortunately, I didn't feel too well that night after eating, which never happens.
On Monday the plan was to hike to Bubble Rock. There was no parking anywhere! I dropped everyone off and somehow found a spot a few miles south at Jordan Pond. I wandered around the pond for a bit before picking them up. We decided to head back in to town for lunch at Side Street Cafe. We started watching eclipse coverage on my phone and then after eating drove out toward Bass Harbor Head Light House to hike in the area and view the eclipse a bit. We hiked Ship Harbor trail out to a nice spot, and then hiked Wonderland trail out for views of the tide pools. We saw crab and a starfish. We also recreated a couple pictures we had done with the kids a couple years ago. After a not fantastic dinner at The Chart Room, we went back in to town for more ice cream and shopping.
Pictures from Maine can be found here.
After brunch at This Way Cafe Tuesday morning, we started the drive toward Mt. Washington. We got there in time to grab a very late bite to eat, check-in, and drive up. While the weather was quite nice in town, the top was completely fogged in, which happens a lot. So only a couple of us got out and walked around a bit and took a few pictures of stuff at the top. That night we ate at Mountain Fire Pizza, which was quite good! I had some of their famous bacon maple pizza.
Wednesday morning we headed for Diana's Baths. This place was packed too, and full of people bathing in the river. It is a site of an old mill. From here we drove Passaconaway Road over Albany Covered Bridge toward the Kancamagus Highway. The "Kanc" is a scenic drive highway that runs through the White Mountain National Forest. We tried stopping at the Lower Falls, but it was once again a spot full of people bathing in the river. Next we stopped at Sabbaday Falls, which we learned is a great hike to a really nice spot. The hike was uphill and a decent path and not too hard. The falls were a high, narrow channel of water moving pretty quick. Next we stopped at the CL Graham Wangan Grounds Overlook. The view was pretty nice! Immediately following was the Pemigewasset Overlook, looking the opposite way. I got out by myself and got a few pictures of the valley. We then headed to Lincoln to eat some late lunch at Black Mountain Burger Company. The food wasn't bad, but it wasn't that great either. We decided to go to Flume Gorge in the afternoon, as we hoped crowds would have dispersed by then. We were absolutely right, it was nearly empty! This is a really nice hike when there are very few people there, and if full would not be nearly as enjoyable. We checked in at our cabins at Mt. Liberty Lodging. These were neat little cabins that would be neat for a longer stay. And, the playground right outside our cabin helped with the kids! We researched and found The Common Man for dinner. It did not disappoint! Very good food and great looking menu. If we were in town longer, we would have went back.
The next day our plan was two hikes and then a drive to Boston for late lunch in the North End. We hiked the Basin and while it was nice, it was worth the hike a bit further to Kinsman Falls. It was all really beautiful. Lastly, we went to hike Artists' Bluff. And on our way, we finally spotted a moose! We were told to park at an old, free lot with a trail-head that was a bit out of the way. But, it just seemed wrong to me. So I figured out to park at the Echo Lake lot, also for free, and was right next to the trail-head. This is a pretty rugged trail, but everyone did great, and the view was stunning!
Pictures from the White Mountain National Forest can be found here.
We finished up our trip at Mike's Pastry and Al Dente in the North End of Boston. It was a great finish to our trip!