Acadia National Park: Need a Do-Over

Yes, we went to Acadia National Park. We spent almost an entire day in and around our 14th national park. Yes, the oldest national park east of the Mississippi is beautiful. And yes, we want to come back.

But if you came to this entry hoping to see my usual top 10 pictures of the park, you will be disappointed. That is because we completely struck out on our attempt to see and photograph this beautiful place. Most of the problem was our fault — we did not do our homework.

Strike 1 — We were unable to go to Cadillac Mountain, with its beautiful vistas of the ocean, or drive the scenic loop around the park. This is because our only vehicle on this trip is an RV. The mountain road is closed to all RVs, and the scenic drive is closed to any vehicle over about 11′ high. This is because John Rockefeller designed the loop with scenic bridges designed to accommodate carriages. In trying to determine exactly where we could and could not go, we only succeeded in securing a reprimand from the local ranger for holding up traffic.

Strike 2 — The next most popular place to go in the park is the area of Sand Beach. While this IS open to RV’s, the popularity of fall colors means that tourists must go on-line and get a special rationed pass as a way of limiting access. We did not check this out ahead of time, so did not have the appropriate permissions.

Strike 3 — The other big draw of the park are the carriage paths, now converted to an intricate web of scenic, easily pedaled bicycle trails. We had bikes. But we arrived in a rainstorm that lasted for most of the day, and did not have adequate rain gear for the occasion. We considered trying anyway, but decided it was not worth it.

So what did we do? We drove around the edges of the park trying, without complete success, to stay out of trouble and find things worth photos.

Next time, we will come prepared, because it is obvious that this is a jewel within the national park system.