So, it turns out that I’m not very good at updating my blog. I imagine that this is the way of many blogs, but I’m determined to post as much as I can. Stick with me if you can!
Last week, we ventured to Acadia National Park for a camping experience. Three nights camping is a first for this crew. We have camped in the yard, and at Nana and Papa’s but this was a grand “adventure”. We stayed in Blackwoods, and were able to set up camp the first day without the rain. We began by exploring the park loop, and walking the ocean trail to thunder hole. Five hours in the car, left Gracie with some extra energy and she proceeded to run, at a fairly decent pace, the majority of the two mile trail. She stopped periodically to set up with a “ready, on your mark, get set, go!”, and she was off. Passing many a surprised hiker trying to enjoy the sea and get a picture. Later, back to the campsite for our first camp meal! Great fun, thanks to some wonderful recipes (thank you Deerfield Stimmell’s) We ate some curly dogs and yummy veggie quesadillas. Libby can camp like no other, and she made some divine meals over the fire.
We were feeling like hot shot campers until we endured the evening.. Our first night in the tent was for the record books. Even with two rain flies and a tarp under the tent, we were unable to escape the ridiculous amount of rain that fell. Pools of water gathered in the corners of the tent and condensation dripped from the “roof”. Nevertheless, the next morning we were up making bacon and eggs and getting ready for some hiking. Jon and I found that if we didn’t talk about the rain, then perhaps we could all ignore it- maybe! We began at the museum and nature center and took a short but dangerous hike from the springs. We traversed rocks that were slippery and wet, and made a certain mom very nervous. Although beautiful, we turned and took our little trekkers down the mountain. After the museum and learning about the Native Americans, we headed around the park for lunch and our next hiking trip at the Bubbles. Lots of fun. The kids were fabulous little hikers, with everyone walking independently. By late in the afternoon, we had shook the rain but we were wet and in the back of my head I could picture the campsite with damp sleeping bags waiting for us. So, we decided to hold off on going back to the campsite, and went into Bar Harbor to walk the huge sand bar between the island and Bar Island. Lots of fun, and many crabs later, we took to a restaurant before settling into the single dampest sleeping bag I have ever touched. Again, just don’t talk about it and nobody else will either.
No rain the next morning, in fact some sun!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Off to Jordan Pond, and some pretty amazing biking. Future family bikers should know that the hills on the map are more on the scale of a mountain, but still lots of fun. After some bike coaching and learning of the passing terms such as, “on your left”, when you ride past a biker in front of you, we were ready to go! On the way up one of the mountains, we were able to stop and view through an enormous telescope a peregrine falcon in the cliffs. A nest but no hatchlings for this falcon, but still incredible to view such a predator in it’s natural habitat.
Lib’s and Liam worked hard with their little legs on these trails. Liam persevered and pushed long and hard up the trails. He was an amazingly strong biker. Jon had Gracie on the back of his bike, and carried her all over the trails. A wrong turn down a trail called, “Aunt Betty’s Pond” left us walking our bikes up a wonderfully large hill with switchbacks and bridges. The grumbling from the six and nine year old was not overly pleasant, but again we worked through it. The bridges, however, are a sight to see, along with the spectacular views.
On the way back down the trail, Libby experienced a spike in her bike confidence, and decided to take the trail by storm. Nervous mom returned, and told her that she needed to ride behind me down the mountain. So many people and loose gravel made me slightly edgy when put together with her need for speed. At first all was well, although she did ride close to my own back wheel, and I was picturing us both splayed out in the middle of the trail. Pushing this image from my mind, all was again beautiful. The sun was out, lots of people smiling and riding by, the views were pretty, and I was so glad that we had made it to Acadia. Then from behind me I hear, “On your left!”. Yep, that’s right, it was Libby trying to pull a fast one on her mom. I apparently was a little slow for her, and she was unable to contain it anymore. I was able to rein her in for a little while longer before turning she and Liam loose. They did a great job and waited patiently for the rest of us. We ended this day with a drive up Cadillac Mountain and some beach time at Sand Beach. The water was chilly, yet refreshing, and it was nice just to soak in some sun.
I’m proud of my kiddos. They were great campers. From sleeping in, to reading to each other before bed, to great UNO games by the campfire. Sadly, the trip went too quickly. However, my happy campers would like to do this again next year. We agree.
Here are the pictures from the trip! Happy camping!