Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

All around the town and then some

Wednesday July 10 & Thursday July 11, 2013
Site 79 Blackwoods Campground
Acadia National Park




Plan C-Town walk 001


Today is a chores day.  David finds some sections on the roof that need resealing and takes care of that.  We make a grocery store run and some business phone calls. 

With regard to yesterday’s problem,  the batteries are saying they aren’t getting much of a charge out of two hours of morning generator time and by the end of the day they are back down to where they were before the two hours.

Not much happening today other than trying to figure out the charging problem.  And going out to post the blog and make comments.


Plan C-Town walk 002





Plan C-Town walk 003

Today is a much more interesting day.  We arrive at 8:45 to take the ranger led Headland hike which will be a three hour geologic hike along the Great Head Loop trail according to the description.   We are early for a change so we join the group gathered around the ranger just in time to hear her say she’s a substitute for the regular ranger geologist so this hike will be more about the cultural history and less about geology.

I like ranger led hikes as long as there aren’t too many people on them but this particular loop is one I was going to do as part of longer combination hike so if there isn’t going to be any geology, which is the reason I as doing it, I think I’ll pass and try again on the other day this hike is offered.



Plan number one is a bust so on to plan B.


Plan C-Town walk 005

Well let’s just do that longer combination hike I was thinking of which conveniently starts from the Sand Beach parking lot where we are currently contemplating our next move.

So off we go along the Ocean Path from Sand Beach around Otter Point  to Gorham and back to Great Head.  

Being in a wooded campground it is easy not to notice when fog has socked the shoreline in.  But that’s the case today we see as we start out on the ocean path.  We can see right along the shore but the views that make this path so famous are not available.  Hmmmmm   maybe not a good day for this plan either.  



A bakery is always a good plan.


Plan C-Town walk 008 

All righty then.  Plan C??    Well how about the Bar Harbor Walking tour, their Shore Path and perhaps even the walk over on the bar to Bar Island if we can time it right.

Back in the car we go to do the town walking tour.   First stop is to soothe our frustration at the Morning Glory Bakery.  Like many businesses in Bar Harbor they have beautiful flowers.  I see I have forgotten to get pictures of the chocolate croissant and sticky bun we pickup.  We sit on their patio chairs and enjoy our rewards before heading out on the 12 stop tour.


Plan C-Town walk 007



As we leave the bakery we see this troop of kayakers, probably sea kayakers judging from the fact that they are wearing skirts, marching down the street.  Reminds me of Ohiopyle.   Still pretty hazy out as move out with the map.


Plan C-Town walk 009A



Flexibility is the name of the game and I think we’ve got it.


Stop #1 is the Village Green where we have been many times before and I’ve featured in previous posts.

Stop #2 is the larger in town portion of the Abbe Museum which we definitely intend to visit on a rainy day but not today.  I discussed the museum on the driving tour section of Sieur De Monts.  If you you’d like to read that, you can find it at this link.   The original museum costs $3 for entry.  This larger one costs $6 but that also includes the original museum.  The 1893 building was purchased by the Abbe from the local YMCA which had been housed there for nearly 100 years.


Plan C-Town walk 012


We’ve been  walking down Main Street for this beginning of “Bar Harbor By Foot”.  As we pass the Abbe I see a great book store sign.  Second Hand Prose.  I love it already.   I go up to open the door, have to take a look inside a shop with such a great name, but alas it doesn’t open for another couple of hours.  DARN!



Plan C-Town walk 014



Oh boy, next stop is the library. 


Plan C-Town walk 016


Stop #3 is the Jessup Memorial Library.  Now I LOVE libraries and always visit the local library in any town we are visiting for a length of time.   It’s a Colonia Revival Style building built in 1911 and is also on The National Register of Historic Places.


Plan C-Town walk 019


When I step inside I think it is the library of my dreams.  This is a warm, user friendly place with a gorgeous entry way, comfy chairs for reading in every room, wonderful tables for researching, a separate periodicals room, beautiful wood stacks and a baby grand piano.  Be still my heart!!   They even have a yarn swap basket.  Nooks and crannies filled with books everywhere I look.

The beautiful wooden stairs lead to the second level stacks.  You can get a temporary library card for a week or a month or a season for a refundable $20.  Sign me up!   But how will I ever have any time to read.  I can see I will need to stay much longer in Bar Harbor.  Like the entire summer maybe????


Plan C-Town walk 021


Plan C-Town walk 023


Plan C-Town walk 025


  Plan C-Town walk 026


Plan C-Town walk 029


Plan C-Town walk 028 


Many of the new  books are laid out and and easy to look at.  They are sooo tempting.  But it’s beautiful outside and I need to be on my way.  I do have to force myself to leave.

Plan C-Town walk 030


Across the street is St. Saviour’s Episcopal Church constructed in 1877. 


Our brochure tells us that this wood and stone structure is a fine example of an English Gothic Parish church.  Like many of the buildings on this tour it is on the National Register of Historic Places.  It houses a number of formal English stained glass windows including 10 Tiffany windows one dating from 1886.


Plan C-Town walk 034



We proceed  through the great old doors to get a look at the stained glass.


Plan C-Town walk 035 


There is stained glass everywhere except in the vaulted timbered ceilings.  The Tiffany glass isn’t labeled but at least one of the pieces is clearly Tiffany and those along the sides do not appear to be.  There are a total of 42 windows.  One of them depicts Jesus wearing, the fisher of men, in No’theaster and yellow slicker.


Plan C-Town walk 036



Plan C-Town walk 037

Plan C-Town walk 041

Plan C-Town walk 040 


Plan C-Town walk 044


Plan C-Town walk 043 


Next door is Bar Harbor’s centuries old cemetery.  The church seems to have neglected its ancestors as many of the tombstones are leaning, cracked or fallen.  Like many old cemeteries we have seen in both the north and the south there is a giant statue as monument to the local soldiers who fought in the Civil War referred to by different terms depending on where you are – the War of Rebellion,  ????


Plan C-Town walk 051


Plan C-Town walk 052 


We walk on down Maine street to the corner marking the final edge of the fire of 1947 which began after the driest 3 months in Bar Harbor history in 300 years.  In the end 5 hotels, 67 of the famous summer “cottages” 170 permanent homes, the Jackson Laboratory and 10, 000 acres of Acadia National Park were destroyed.



At this point our map takes us down Holland Street and past some of the lovely “Inns” for summer vacationers in Bar Harbor. 


Plan C-Town walk 057


Plan C-Town walk 058  


Plan C-Town walk 056



Stop 6 is the municipal building built in 1908.  Formerly it was the high school graduating its last class in 1968. Our next two stops would be on Eden Street at the College of the Atlantic but we have already seen the excellent Dorr Museum of Natural History (see the post On to Acadia).  It is housed in the original National Park Offices.   We also have seen The Turrets which is a gorgeous house with many turrets of course.  It sits right on the water and was a summer cottage built in 1893.  It is under serious renovation at this time and has scaffolding from ground to chimney top so you cannot see its beauty.  It is supposed to be open to the public again next year when the work is finished.


And now for just a few little summer “cottages”.


Plan C-Town walk 070

Instead we move on to stop 8 The West Main Street District where the houses all built between the 1870’s and 1930’s offer a look at Bar Harbor’s historic summer community before the fire.   These houses were spared and all face Frenchman’s Bay.  That is their backyards face the bay.  The entire 25 acre district is on the National Historic Register.   All down the street I notice very interesting front yard “fencing”.


Plan C-Town walk 067


Fern Fences.

Plan C-Town walk 071


If you are looking for a lovely summer home in Bar Harbor, Sotheby’s will sell you this one.  Lovely iron fences included.


Plan C-Town walk 074


Plan C-Town walk 083



While we are looking at fences David spies this neglected one with an open gate. He has always had a very hard time with open gates or driveways that look interesting.  I watch and wait for the police to tell them whatever story I can dream up about why he is trespassing here.  Turns out to lead into a large side yard of someone’s property.  So not much of real interest he reports.


Plan C-Town walk 084


This fence is just starting to bloom.  I believe it’s rhododendron.  But if you know otherwise, please let me know.   Whatever it is, it is beautiful.  You can just barely see the front steps to the house in the background.


Plan C-Town walk 094


Plan C-Town walk 089




The last fence is a long planter done into the top of a really lovely Cadillac Mountain Pink granite fence.

Plan C-Town walk 096



Plan C-Town walk 098        


As we walk along West Street, Bridge street crosses it.  We take a little detour and go down to see how the sand bar is doing. 


For 90 minutes before and after low tide a sand bar connects Bridge Street to 1.5 miles of old roads and trails on the forested Bar Island.  All of this is within Acadia National Park.   Right now there is no sign of the sand bar.  We’ll come back at the end of our walk to see how things are going.


Plan C-Town walk 065



At the end of West Street we’ve reached Agamont Park at the town Pier and the beginning of the Shore Path.

Like these folks we stop for lunch at the park.  There is a tall ship at anchor.  I’ve always wanted to take a ride on one.  I’d actually love to do a windjammer cruise.  Have any of you ever done one???


Plan C-Town walk 112


Plan C-Town walk 119


Plan C-Town walk 120 




After lunch we continue on with Bar Harbor on Foot and head down the Shore Path.

Plan C-Town walk 123


The shore path is a gorgeous one mile along the edge of the ocean.  This path was first put in during the early years of the “summer cottages”.  The land for it was donated for folks to promenade along.  We don’t promenade much any more but the current land owners are generous enough to continue to allow the path to go for at least a mile.  There is a chain link fence at the end and you have to either promenade back or cut up into town.   Not sure who the party pooper is.


Plan C-Town walk 127


Plan C-Town walk 126 


We turn up at the end and walk on to stop 13 which is The town athletic field donated in 1914 by Mrs. John S Kennedy.  During the 1880’s and 90’s this was also the site of a thriving Native American market place where crafters and guides peddled their goods and services.  The YMCA is across the street from the Athletic field having moved there from what is now the Abbe Museum.  They have a gym, fitness, room and swimming pool. Visitors can purchase short term and one day passes.  This is great for anyone who wants to work out or swim.

Like nearly every other business, the Y has a lovely flower garden.  Their deep red day lilies are looking particularly beautiful.   MDI=Mount Desert Island.


Plan C-Town walk 138


Plan C-Town walk 136


  Plan C-Town walk 137



The last stop on the tour is fittingly the Bar Harbor Historical Society who has published this very nice walking tour.   They are housed in the former St. Edward’s Convent (1917-1979) a Jacobethan Revival style brick building and is – repeat after me – listed on the National Register of Historic Places.   Notice the door.  It was after hours or I would have gone in and asked what happened to the sisters in the convent in 1970 that they sold their building.


Plan C-Town walk 141


Plan C-Town walk 142 


We end our afternoon by walking back to Bridge Street to check out the water level at the end of the street.   Looks pretty different now.   The picture below is taken from the exact same spot as the one earlier.   Boy I hope those folks come back for their cars before the tide comes in.


Plan C-Town walk 145


And here are some of the folks we saw just after we had Danish this morning.  Not the same ones I’m sure but perhaps the same Sea Kayaking tour company.   One woman needs help getting her spray skirt hooked into place.


Plan C-Town walk 147



Plan C-Town walk 149 


Well since the sand bar, or should it be called the rock bar, is available we decide to go for it and walk across to hike to the summit of Bar Island.

Looking back from the other side.


Plan C-Town walk 152


Although  owned by the town of Bar Harbor, Bar Island is part of the park which maintains the trail.


Plan C-Town walk 155



The first part of the trail is easy.  Like a road.  Then it narrows down. and becomes an uphill over the roots route.


Plan C-Town walk 156


Plan C-Town walk 157


Plan C-Town walk 158  



We reach the top which has been allowed to grow up with trees so the views are only partial.  They look back to the pier and shoreline businesses of Bar Harbor.


Plan C-Town walk 165


Back through the woods for the trip down and over the bridge again.


Plan C-Town walk 168


Plan C-Town walk 169


Plan C-Town walk 175  

Time to reap the reward for all this walking by trying out my second ice cream store.  David visits the Bar Harbor Brewing Tasting Room for his treat.   With my hands full of ice cream I don’t get a picture of

I will render my recommendations on my last post from Bar Harbor for those of you who love ice cream like I do.  :-))


 Plan C-Town walk 177



We finish the day with a concert by the Bar Harbor Band in the Village Green.   They are a community band and they play twice a week in July and August.   A very homey sort of thing I think.



Plan C-Town walk 184


For such a small town, this one has a lot going for it.


  1. I often wonder why people are born where they were... me in particular. We just have no say whatsoever to whom we are born or where.

    Maine would have worked for me. There or Port Townsend, Washington.

    That library is absolutely one I would have spent many days. I love libraries... but at the time I was there? I was wandering through the Park... jeeez that's gorgeous... hate I missed it ... great pictures

  2. First of all, I didn't understand about sea kayakers wearing skirts.

    The library is gorgeous and I don't think I could have pulled myself away. What a dream place.

    It's properly called the War of Northern Aggression!

    1. Sea kayakers wear "skirts" that fasten around the opening of sit in kayaks to keep the cockpit dry from waves splashing over the bow or a side wave catching you. I never wore a kayaking skirt, I didn't care if I got wet. But they are also nice for keeping the bugs and skeeters out of your lap and legs.

  3. I enjoyed the walk about with your varied choices of things to do--sure seemed like a full day! I too missed that gorgeous library and alluring used bookstore. And, yes, that pink flower was a rhodie. They are abundant in Oregon but bloom much earlier here.

  4. That was such a great tour, I feel I can say " been there and done that". It will be added to our next Main visit. As for those Kayak skirts, I rode one once. I enjoyed it after I got over the tipping fear. After we came ashore hours later, people laughed at my ballerina dance in my spray skirt. It is a wonderful thing to seal the boat and keep all water out.
    Battery problem eh? The fridge and LP gas detector always use a little power. Make sure a light in a storage bin has not been left on. Use a multimeter and measure the voltage at the batteries. Write it down and then start the genset and measure the battery voltage again and write that down. There should be several more volts with the genset running. Charge voltage is 14 to 14.7 volts. After charge the charger switches to float mode and the voltage will be 12 to 12.8vdc. If all this appears normal, when the batteries are so called dead, carefully isolate them by removing the Black Negative cables. Wait 20 minutes or so and measure the voltage of each battery and write it down. Sometimes one battery will go bad and drag down the whole set. They should measure the same +- < 0.5 vdc. If one is very low, isolate it and just use the other two. ( these procedures are for a set of 3, 12 vdc batteries connected in parallel). Hope it helps. email me if you have a question.

  5. great help from Tom and Kathy on the batteries...love love love all the places you are seeing, how nice to see them through your eyes. The Episcopal Church was one of my favorite stops....

  6. I was so glad you didn't post a picture of the chocolate croissant and the sticky bun because I tired of cleaning all the lick marks off my computer screen, and then you had to post a picture of that ice cream...

    Any chance you can do a hydrometer test on your batteries? It sounds like possibly you have a couple of bad or tired cells. I know my house batteries are getting tired and I have three of them, all which have to be replaced at the same time. If you mix a new battery with an old one, the old one will pull down the new one. Of course, my three are huge, very expensive ones. I'm trying to eke every last volt out of them before I spring for new ones. :c(

  7. When we hit Maine, it was a drive through, jut so we could say we went from Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine. Now after looking at all your pictures, I would love to go back again someday and take some of those walking tours.

  8. Hi Sherry and David,

    We (Wags the service dog and I) enjoyed meeting you yesterday at Blackwoods Campground!

    We love your blog and have learned so much about places we haven't visited yet as well as the ones we have!

    Sadly, we had to leave today as our generator went kaput ( it is likely a simple fix but we need parts). Hope you resolve your battery issues soon.

    Looking forward to more reports from Bar Harbor!

    Katy in NH

    1. Katy, I wondered where you had gone. We came over to see your airstream and neither it nor you were there. Email me at Rvdreamlife@gmail.com since I don't see any way to reply to you.

  9. Bar Harbor is a lovely town. What a great day you had, even if it was "plan c."

    The library is beautiful and I loved the stained glass at the church.

    I didn't notice you mentioning the heat, so I'm hoping it's cooled down for you. Main should not be hot! It's just not right.

    I hope you'll be there a while. I'm enjoying your posts.

    You got some good info on the batteries. I hope something helps. We seem to have an inverter problem. Always something.

  10. Thanks for taking us across the bar to see what's on the island. We missed our chance when we were in Bar Harbor several summers ago; it's on the list for next time we get that far north.

  11. Plan C looks like a winner to me. Good Food and a house tour also.... I luv, luv, luv checking out the old buildings in an area. It always tells so much about an area. Ice Cream, I Scream, We all scream for Ice Cream!!

  12. Great tour. Catherine loves libraries she was so excited to get her card this week.

  13. I love your tours :) That library looks like a vacation in itself! Hope you figure out the issue with the batteries in Winona soon :)

  14. I think that Plan C went very well and I found it all terribly interesting. Most Plan C's don't work this well! Thanks, as always, for sharing -- particularly the picture of those deep red day lilies. Oh, my.

  15. That was truly wonderful, feel like I have been somewhere!

  16. Lots of fun places to explore here yet my favorite is that luscious library.

  17. Great tour!! With so much to do up here, I'll just enjoy your tour this time. Just can't do it all in a month;o))

  18. Gee, we missed that library-now we have to go back:)

  19. Great post! I love the flowers and houses in Bar Harbor. Sorry about the frustruations of the morning, but overall - what a day...full of history..homey and grandiose too!!


Your comments are the best part of this blog for me.
I LOVE hearing from you!