Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Maine Lobster and more...but no camera!

Pictures L to R: Dave on the boat in Maine; Lobster dinner; Calm waters on Back River; Our campsite at Stoneybrook in Hanover, ME.
5 July 2009 Bath, ME to Hanover, ME 93 miles

We’ve now seen and experienced the real Maine…at least according to my cousin David! We woke to sunny skies, and sparkling water for the first time in many days. After that weekly obligatory chore of doing laundry, and for Dave, lubing the car joints, we headed over to Peggy's cousins David’s where we were soon headed for the river.

Donning our PFD’s (life vests for you non-boaters) we headed south on the waterway at Bath. Wouldn't you believe it...about 10 minutes from the dock, I realized we left the camera in the car! Too far to go back, we opted to use our phone cameras...the pictures are not the best. I cannot begin to say how upset I was about this...I guess we'll need to rely on our memories.

Out on the water, David gave us a guided tour of the local area and wildlife. When we left Bath, the tide was nearing its high water mark. We spent two hours or so exploring some of the most beautiful coastline in Maine. The coastline varied between granite outcroppings and water hugging forests to marshy grasslands. Along the way we saw numerous osprey—some busy fishing, and some in their nests, bald eagles--both adult and juveniles—(the juveniles don’t have a white head yet), seals, deer, and a few blue herons…and the obligatory seagulls and terns that are often present along the coastline. During parts of the ride, we were one of many boats on the water, dodging the ever-present lobster buoys; at other times, we were the only boat in sight, and the water was glassy smooth.

We eventually made it to an area called Five Islands, in sight of the Atlantic Ocean and had probably the best lobster dinner right there at the dock. It was absolutely scrumptious—messy, but scrumptious! We topped off the dinner with a stop at the ice cream shack for some incredible homemade ice cream. (Mr. Phinney...this would make a great tour stop!) Honestly…how much better does it get…an ocean view…sunny skies…fresh lobster, potatoes, and corn on the cob…and homemade ice cream!

As the afternoon wore on, we headed back to the boat for the return ride to Bath. By this time, the tide was on its way out, and there was a stark contrast against the coastline, where the seaweed now lay exposed, dangling from the granite rocks looking like long beards on the old sea captains. With the tide going out, and the river current running, the water took on a whole different character from the trip down as well. The swirling eddies and foaming waters in much narrower channels sent spray flying in our faces and chills down our backs as we passed through what was called “lower hells gate” and “upper hells gate” because the water was so choppy.

This day of boating was the absolutely perfect ending for our third-corner weekend, and will be something we will always remember…the enchanted forest at Brightwater and the boating on Morning Star.

After saying good-bye to our cousins, we turned Baby with her radiator to the west and headed out toward the forth corner of our journey. We’re staying in Hanover, ME, just east of the Maine/New Hampshire border at Stonybrook Campground.

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