Hadley Point, the private campground where we are staying, is totally full. Many of the sites are nicely shaded and in the trees, but because I had reserved early and requested a site with good satellite reception, we are in the middle of a large grassy clearing with seven other rigs. Our site is water and electric only, but they have a "honey wagon" that will come around and pump our tank out upon request.
I always expect July weather to be hot, but today it was in the high 70s with a brisk cooling breeze. Perfect!
We started our day with a stop at the Hulls Point Visitor Center in Arcadia National Park. It was mobbed with 4th of July weekend visitors. After seeing the park movie, we consulted with the "advice desk" and decided to do a drive around the southern part of the island to visit a few of the less popular spots in the park.
The road across the island was not crowded, and we got to see many of the local homes and farms. Much of the private land is heavily wooded along the roadway, but there were some pretty good views of coves and inlets.
Our first stop was at the Bass Harbor lighthouse.
The parking lot was small, but we were patient, and after waiting out a parking line of four vehicles, we were able to get a spot.
and then down some wooden stairs.
The rocks below the lighthouse were very rugged.
I guess these are our first pictures of the rocky Maine coast! I'm sure we will take many more like them in the coming weeks. There were a few other people down there, but not many.
Back in the Jeep, we followed the road as it wound through more-populated stretches of road. I'm not sure you could call them towns.
As Craig drove, I plotted our route on the park map and spotted another likely place to stop: the Pretty Marsh picnic area.
There was not a lot of parking there, but we managed. Once again there was a short walk through the timber to the cliffs over the beach,
and a set of wood stairs down to the water's edge.
There is a small town further along the road that is called Pretty Marsh. We did not go there, and Craig commented on the idea that the marsh in the name was a "seaweed" marsh.
The beach was very rocky. We noticed many barnacles on the rocks. We spent a some time enjoying the cool air and sparkling water. It was very breezy but pleasant.
Then back to the Jeep and across the island by a different route.
We crept through traffic in the very busy, touristy town of Bar Harbor. We plan on going there for the fireworks on the 4th, so I thought I'd like to check it out. No question, we will take a shuttle bus into town!
Although I did have a plan for dinner, Craig suggested picking up some fresh buns so we could grill some Italian sausages we already had. As he drove along I asked Google Maps where a grocery store was, and luckily we were on a straight path for a rather nice one.
Buns in hand, we returned to the rig, and here I am typing away!
Fourth of July
There were many activities in Bar Harbor for the Fourth, and if you had kids along or were a local, they would have been fun. But after last years' "local parade" disaster, we decided to stick around the rig until later afternoon, and then go into town for dinner and the fireworks. After seeing the crowded streets yesterday, driving was not an option. Instead we caught the free shuttle bus sponsored by L. L. Bean Company. No parking or traffic worries! Nice!
After wandering through a few gift shops we went over to the area where the fireworks were going to be set off, and claimed a few feet of grass for our chairs. There was no need to stay with them, so when we were ready we went across the street and had a very good dinner at Paddy's Irish bar and restaurant.
As you can see we were pretty close to where they were set to go off. By 9:30 PM, the area was solid, elbow to elbow people.
But everyone was in a good mood and patiently waiting for the sky to darken and the show to begin.
A wonderful display.
The walk back to the bus was a bit hectic because the buses were not at the same place where they had dropped us off. We heard they were "at the school", but because we were not familiar with the town, we weren't sure where that was. There were no signs, but we followed the crowds who were walking toward parking, and asked a couple of police officers who were directing traffic.
All in all, everything went smoothly and we were back at the rig long before anyone who had taken a car.
A good day indeed!