Acadia National Park was our main objective for our trip to Maine. To that end, we spent a number of days hitting the must-see spots throughout the park. Some of these places you can drive up to and others require
a bit of hiking but they are all well worth the time!
Our first stop was Sand Beach. Being from Florida, where sand beaches rule, this beach, that you have to climb down a long staircase to get to, has some sand but also a lot of rocks.
If you turn around from the shore, there are ponds, fields of grasses and mountains! Quite the variety of scenes all in one place!
Taking the one-way Park Loop Rd our next stop was Boulder Beach.
The rocks on this beach are all very rounded and not easy to walk on. This little cove is also accessed via a long staircase. While we were trying to get some interesting shots, several folks came down and made their way around the area. We always try to be patient and wait for unknowing people to move away from what we are trying to shoot. One couple was spending a lot of time rummaging in the rocks.
Just before we decided it was time to move on, they went on up toward the road. As we came up to the top of the stairs I noticed that there was a park ranger standing there and she had stopped the couple. They evidently had picked up a bunch of rocks and taken them up with them. The ranger was issuing a citation! Remember the only things you can take out of a national park are photographs!
Carriage Roads/Hadlock Falls
Carriage Roads is forty-five miles of road that is only open to hikers, bikes and horses. It winds through the Acadia National Park. We only hiked a small part of it. There are old stone bridges and scenic areas along the road.
We hiked a couple of miles up along one section to Hadlock Falls. It is a small waterfall compared to some we have photographed elsewhere but it was still worth the hike.
One of my favorite places in Acadia National Park is Eagle Lake. On my last trip to Maine, this was where we witnessed the Milky Way in a way I had never seen before or since! This time we were not so fortunate as the moon was almost full so the Milky Way was not visible.
Eagle Lake is beautiful in the daytime as well, though!
There was a view that I had remembered seeing very early in the trip that last time I was in Maine. I looked for it everywhere! Toward the end of our stay, we drove by Eagle Lake and I happened to look past the bushes along the road and finally saw that view I had been looking for. I had not realized we had gone off the road that very first day back in 2016 and the view was a bit further along the lake from where we had gotten the Milky Way shots.
Jordan Pond is one of the iconic spots in Acadia National Park. There is a large parking area, visitor center with restaurant, lawn, gardens and many trails.
We spent several hours here walking the trails and shooting the “pond”. This area is very popular so there were many people everywhere.
The gardens by the visitor center were in full bloom and the butterflies were loving it!
Long Pond is a bit more remote than Jordan Pond. There was only a small parking area and some fairly easy trails along the shore.
We found some mushrooms along these trails due to the high moisture content of the soil. There were also some interesting wildflowers.
Everyone wants to witness the sunrise from the peak of Cadillac Mountain. We got up very early one morning (weekday) to make our way up the winding road up to the fairly large parking area. As was the case the last time I went to Cadillac Mountain, the parking lot was full and all along the road leading to the peak was full. We drove around and around the lot and finally someone pulled out. I parked and we all jumped out of the vehicle and ran for the viewing area.
We managed to catch the sun just after it had risen. We stuck around for a while to let the crowds/traffic die down a bit and continued to shoot the warm morning light!
Cadillac Mountain is evidently a problem at sunset as well. I have not tried it but you can tell from the number of headlights that can be seen coming down from the peak when we have been at Eagle Lake in the evening.
These are several of the interesting areas in Acadia National Park. All are very worth the time and hiking to see the views and the nature that surrounds those amazing views!
Please click on the images to see larger versions and to see many more images from these parts of Acadia National Park.
My next post will be about the Schoodic Peninsula, a part of the park that is a bit of a drive from the main part of the park as it is across the water from Bar Harbor.
That is all for now.