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Bar Harbor / Acadia National Park

In February, Samantha and I discussed the fact that we couldn't remember the last time we had a vacation that wasn't also a trip for some other reason, like visiting family for the holidays or going to a conference or a wedding. So we made plans to fix that. And two weeks ago we had a lovely mini-vacation in Bar Harbor, Maine, and Acadia National Park.

I didn't know the place existed before February and now it's one of my favorite places ever. The town and most of the park are located on Mt. Desert Island on the Atlantic Coast and it's just beautiful country. Apparently everyone already knows this, as the place has been the vacation spot for the rich and famous for decades and does quite a healthy tourist business in the summer months.

Lucky for us, it wasn't quite the summer months yet and we almost had the place entirely to ourselves. We showed up at our chosen lodgings, the Coach Stop Inn bed and breakfast after a quick seven hour drive to find that we are the only guests there. Acadia itself only opened fully the day before, and the carriage roads were still closed to biking due to the spring thaw. Venturing into town, we found many of the local merchants still closed for the winter.

However I can safely say that very little of this had any effect on our experience. True, we didn't get to do any biking or kayaking, but if we had, I might have missed out on my favorite part of the trip: our two hikes.

I had never gone hiking in any serious sense before, and I'm sorry I've been missing out for so long. Friday and Saturday morning were spent on the trails headed up and down Gorham and Beech Mountain, respectively. Admittedly, they're not so much mountains as much as overgrown hills (525 and 839 feet), but they're the only mountains I've ever climbed, so I'll stick with mountains. Anyway, I had a great time following the trails, scrambling over rocks and trekking through forests. The weather was absolutely perfect (in the low 60s most of the time) and we barely spotted another soul out on the trails. Very peaceful and yet an excellent workout.

The workout part we needed, especially, after the three course breakfasts we were served at our B&B. Which were completely amazing. I think they called this Eggs Napoleon. I didn't get a picture of the blueberry fritters, their signature dish and the first course of each breakfast. That's probably because we were wolfing them down so fast. Samantha picked the place partially because of the excellent breakfasts, and they didn't disappoint. Overall we highly recommend the Coach Stop Inn.

Hiking and breakfast were the highlights for me, but the whole weekend was a smash hit. The weather cooperated beautifully the entire time. We enjoyed some less strenuous touring of the park and the island, driving up Cadillac Mountain, walking along the shore and across the "bar" at low tide. We even got some culture at a local Native American museum and did a little shopping. We had delicious food all over the place, sampling among the open eating establishments in Bar Harbor and a couple of Yelp-approved spots in Portland on the way there and back.

All in all it was a great trip. We felt recharged heading back home. And I have a new hiking addiction to feed.


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on May 3, 2009 7:57 PM.

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