Cadillac Sunrise a Go!
~Saturday, September 11, 2021~
We will never forget 😢💔
With the fingers at the ready, I logged back on to grab a lottery ticket for Monday’s sunrise on Cadillac Mountain. And Bingo!! We got in. Arrival time….4:30 😩. But I know once we get up there, it will be an amazing experience and well worth getting up for.
As Jeff was doing his morning reading, he noticed something really bothering his leg but couldn’t see what it was, until he felt it again. Oh no! A bee 🐝. Poor guy and right on the back of his thigh. We saw the guilty insect but then lost sight of it somewhere in the trailer. We’re pretty sure it was a honeybee which dies after they’ve stung someone, so we hope it doesn’t find another opportunity to duplicate its harm.They really are painful. But of course, Jeff wasn’t going to let a bee sting ruin his day. So on we go….
We thought we’d get our orientation of the park first to ensure what we think we want to see is on target. And it looks like we’re back to the same old (and it really is getting old) mask wearing and COVID protocol, no matter your vaccination status. The Hulls Cove Visitor Center was on the list first, with only the gift shop open. But as with most of the parks, they’ve set up makeshift “information desks” outside for questions and such. They were extremely helpful. We were on the right track with our list after all, but we did find out about a few extra sites that we noted.
The 27-mile Park Loop Road is the go-to scenic drive on the east side of Mount Desert Island. Our first destination off of the Loop Road was Sieur de Monts which encompasses The Nature Center, the Wild Gardens of Acadia and the Abbe Museum all of which were closed. Hmm...was not told earlier that these stops would be closed. The Nature Center and museum were closed due to COVID , but the wild gardens were closed due to flooding (remember those heavy rains we just had?). Anyway, we’re still glad we came because it allowed us to tour the remainder of the grounds at Sieur de Monts. Sieur de Monts is the title given by George Dorr to Pierre Dugua (a French nobleman), who came to Mount Desert Island in 1604. George Dorr, known as the “Father of Acadia National Park” was an American preservationist who played a pivotal role in the creation and expansion of the park. He basically put it on the map. One of the highlights at Sieur de Monts is the Jesup Path….a 0.9 mile path in the freshwater wetland.
It was quite a feast for the eyes, nose and ears with the beautiful forest of hemlocks and birch trees, some of which are already getting their Fall color. If you watch the video, you’ll also hear the warblers and peepers making conversation (make sure to turn up the volume ⬆️🔊). Definitely a place of peace and serenity. As we continued our walk around the grounds, we stumbled on an unusual octagonal tile-roofed building. In 1909, Dorr had a spring canopy built over a spring (like a spring house). The main function of a spring house was to keep perishables from spoiling. Building a small building over an open spring, captured the cooler air temperatures above ground so you could in turn, store meats, fruit and dairy products.
We continued up the Loop Road to find parking for our next stop….Sand Beach. This is quite a beauty, but small. Water temps rarely get over 55 degrees, so we decided not to have Sadie do a swim today. Evidently, they had just reopened the beach to dogs after September 8. I totally get why they don’t allow dogs there during the peak summer season. It would simply be too crowded with a mix of people AND 4-legged creatures. From the beach, we could have driven to our next spot, but opted for the walking path along the coast to Thunder Hole.
When the waves kick up a few notches, it’s quite the experience. It is a small inlet, naturally carved out of the rocks that the waves roll into. At the end of this inlet, is a small cavern where, with a mixture of air and water, creates a thunderous boom. Normally, there’s a stairway that you can take out to the rocks where the waves roll in, but due to the high surf advisories these past few days, it was closed off. Still, a worthwhile experience.
Our final stop of the day was Jordan Pond. This pond is Acadia’s deepest lake at 150 feet and nourishes not only wildlife, but humans as well. Besides serving as a wildlife habitat, it provides drinking water for the Jordan Pond House and nearby residents. The water is so clear, you can see to a depth of 45 feet from the surface.
With the exception of watercraft, swimming and wading are not allowed. Gosh, what a beautiful setting. There is a lovely outdoor dining area at the Pond House, where you can opt for a delicious sit down meal there, or simply picnic on the lawn, just in front of the restaurant. Evidently, the Pond House is known for their popovers as well as their views. The smell was quite delicious! We saw quite a few cyclists on the surrounding carriage biking/walking trails, which we’re looking forward to doing tomorrow. So happy we got to really delve into the park’s offerings today.