Acadia National Park, located on Mount Desert Island in Maine, rises out of the Atlantic Ocean to a summit elevation of 1,530 ft. Inland trails bring you to mountain summits with ocean views; Coastal trails have you navigating rocky shorelines of black, gray and pink granite, the wind fragrant with fish, salt and pine.
We camped at Blackwood Campground located within the park and a few minutes’ drive from the bustling town of Bar Harbor. It was that time of year again, nearly summer when schools are out, and parks are busy. This was very evident in Bar Harbor where sidewalks are crowded, restaurants are overflowing and cross sections showcase a dangerous and awkward dance between pedestrians and vehicle traffic. No one knows what they are doing, where they are going, everyone is in a happy oblivion that I imagine the locals love to hate.
At this point in our trip we no longer had the luxury of the “off season.” Fortunately, though, this means we finally got to experience nature alongside great weather. Thus, with gobs of magic sunlight, we were outside running, hiking the island’s endless coastal trails and making our way up the inland peaks. Notably, we ventured out to Bass Harbor Lighthouse and hiked up the “Beehive” trail to summit Mt. Champlain at an elevation of 1,058 ft.
The island is small and it was an easy and worthwhile outing to drive around. Local businesses are the theme throughout. Vintage book stores, nautical art shops, local hardware stores, ice cream parlors, etc. The architecture is what my mom would call “rustic-y,” with wood frame houses, painted shutters and ribbed steel roofs. In Acadia, even the dilapidated buildings are picturesque. In town, store fronts are predominately painted white and resemble houses with planter boxes hanging from the windows.
We left Acadia National Park, feeling the Maine vibe, which we took all the way to the furthest point east in the United States, Lubec, Maine. This would also be our last city in the States before we jump ship and get cozy with Canada.