The long Labor Day weekend gave us a perfect excuse to visit and trek Cadillac Summit at Acadia National Park. Bar Harbor, a short 5 hour drive from Boston is an easy weekend drive. What I was not ready for was the big congregation of tourists thronging the parks and the towns along the way. Just like us, most of them felt the need to enjoy the last rays of the summer sun before winter arrives.
We were thankful as we finally drove into the large compound of the ‘Atlantic Oceanside Resort’. We walked into our room and threw our bags on the floor. Rushing past the glass double door to walk into the beach was a much needed exhilarating feeling. The two chairs outside our room was my brother’s home and office for the next three days. All he needed was a beer to give him company.
Starting our day off with a healthy breakfast and an ocean view, did get us all into the spirit. This high spirit soon wore off when we realized that there was no parking anywhere on the Park loop road. This is where all the major attractions of Acadia are! From the phosphorescent sand on Sand Beach to the view at the Bubble Pond, all went un-clicked by my camera. After driving for around an hour and a half, we managed to squeeze the car into a corner, Before anyone else could take the spot, off we ran to see whatever we could!
Views of the great blue waters uninterrupted by land and boats filled our eyes. A white beach along the coast in the far distance and rocks with daring tourists upon them, all showed me the essence of this national park. We walked around the Ocean Path trail and discovered some great views which were simply a treat to us. I can honestly say, my camera was happy the 2nd day!
After a quick lobster lunch, we packed our bags to trek Cadillac Summit. We started the trail after getting lost and walking into fully occupied campsites till some park ranges helped us out. Following the trees marked blue seems easy enough if you look ahead and walk. Fortunately or unfortunately, as we steadily climbed up, looking back was inevitable. We stopped and looked every 15-20 minutes to savor the view and to set up the tripod. But alas, after several failed attempts to capture the beauty, we decided to simply enjoy the moment and continued following the blue marks.
As we reached the summit, the sun was still giving off the late afternoon rays. We walked around the mountain trail admiring the molten magma rocks and the towns far far away.
As the sun was setting, we saw people emptying out. A park ranger who came running towards us, informed us about an accident. People were rushing to get back down before the roads were indefinitely blocked. Also, all the uphill traffic was blocked which meant the cab that was supposed to pick us up couldn’t come up!
Like a knight in camouflaged uniform with a machine gun by his side, the park ranger offered us a ride till the base. He threw in funny stories of his early ranger days for good measure. Even though we missed the sunset up on top, we caught the big round orange blob sliding down into the mountains at the base.
As the river still shone golden, our driver, whose chest swelled with pride for her town, picked us up. We were too tired to talk but that was not a good enough reason for her to stop telling stories. She slowed down by the meadows to show us deer and ponds. As she dropped us back, she said we were a couple of weeks early to visit Acadia. Apparently by September last week, the roads we traveled will look like a painting with the rich autumn colors.
Sigh, maybe another trip in three weeks?