After the 17-hour drive, a stop in Hershey, PA and New York City, we had made it to our destination. We pulled into the National Park which is located on Mount Desert Island. The campsite we stayed in was called Blackwoods Campground. Blackwoods was located close enough that we could hear the ocean and have easy walking access to the water but is secluded in the woods. We pitched our tents and unloaded our gear for a week stay. One thing I would recommend is to bring plenty of blankets and warm clothes because the weather is unpredictable from what we experienced. As for the accommodations, the bathrooms are clean and a short walk from all of the campsites. There are no showers in the camp area, but there is a small town just outside of Blackwoods which has a pay shower facility. All the campsites have access to the wood that the national park employees cut for the campers. I suggest getting wood and cooking a few meals and smores!
The first hike that I am going to recommend is the Beehive trail. Luckily, the day we had planned to do the beehive the weather was perfect. The trail itself is popular and can get busy. We decided that it would be best to get there early and start the hike. What I liked most is the iron rung ladders and views. The trail takes you up the side of a mountain with some moderate to difficult sections. Once at the top there are beautiful views of the ocean and the mountainous parts of the park. The beehive trail is a must see when staying in Acadia. Another popular hike is the North/South Bubble Rock trail. The hike itself is easy and leads to the popular Bubble Rock which is a balanced rock that is great for taking silly pictures with. When we did this hike it was a bit cloudy and cold so our pictures did not turn out as great as we had hoped. I would suggest this hike to anyone hiking with a family or just for a quick hike. Another easy hike I would suggest is the Jordan Pond Trail. One of the reasons we had chosen Maine for our vacation area was for the fishing. The Jordan Pond Trail is located on the Jordan Pond, and is a simple loop all the way around the pond. If you are interested in seeing the ponds in Acadia, Jordan Pond is the most popular with spectacular views. The last hike I am going to talk about is the Perpendicular Trail which is a bit of a drive from Blackwoods. Perpendicular trail is located on the southwest part of the island on Long Pond. We decided to drive down to this part of the island in the hopes of catching more fish. We ended up hiking up a trail that we had not researched at all. The trail starting taking us up metal ladders to the top of a mountain. It was in the evening when we started this hike so it started to get dark fast. The only flashlights we had were our phone lights. It was too dark when we got to the top to take the ladders back down, so we decided to just keep walking on the trail hoping it would bring us back to the pond. One thing to remember before hiking in Acadia is that the woods can become dark quickly. We managed to make it back to the pond and still to this day talk about this hike. I recommend this trail to others who are looking for a hike that is not popular but still wonderful and recommend doing it in the daylight.
Like I said before, one reason we picked Acadia was for good fishing. We bought two fishing license for Kody and Zach from the hardware store in Bar Harbor. When fishing in Maine, passes are required to fish in the fresh water but not in the ocean. After we bought passes and some bait, we headed for Jordan Pond. Kayte, my sister, and I decided that we wanted to just hike the Jordan Pond trail while the boys fished. When we got back from our hike they had not caught one fish and were ready to leave. When we got back to the campsite the boys headed down to the ocean, where passes are not required, to try and catch some sea fish. To get to the ocean from the campsite we had to climb down some rocky areas. Once we got to the ocean, the boys threw their lines in and started catching some rainbow smelt bait fish. The waves coming in and the sound of the pebble rocks hitting each other made this experience lovely. The longer we stayed the higher the tide started to get so we had to hurry to get back up the cliffs before the tide caught us. It was a lot of fun watching the waves come up and almost hitting the boys as they were standing on the rocks with their rods. The last place that we fished was Echo Lake and as I already mentioned we ended up hiking instead of fishing because the fish were not biting. I think we came to Maine in the wrong season for catching fresh water fish, but I would suggest throwing out a line in the ocean anytime of the year.
Paddle Boarding and Kayaking
We found a paddleboard rental located on the northern part of the Great Long Pond. The national park owns a rental company for paddle boards, kayaks, and canoes. We rented one tandem kayak and two paddleboards. While paddling we saw a loon in the distance. I was in the tandem kayak with Kody and we headed towards the loon in hopes of getting a closer look. A few minutes later the loon started making noises and flying over us and under us in the water. We think the loon had a nest nearby and was ready to attack anyone who got close. Keep in mind that these are large birds and they can be aggressive so keep your distance while on the water.
The largest town located in Acadia is Bar Harbor. I would describe it as a fishing town located on the ocean inlet. We came to Bar Harbor a few times to enjoy the restaurants and shops. Maine is known for its lobster, so of course the boys were eager to try fresh seafood. We went to McKay’s Public House for the lobster. The boys both ordered a seafood platter and seemed to enjoy the traditional Maine dish. Mount Desert Island Ice Cream is a great place to stop for a dessert. The company makes their ice cream from scratch and they offer sorbets as well. The Trailhead Café is a great place to enjoy a cup of coffee or tea while taking advantage of the wifi the shop offers to customers. Bar Harbor received its name from the sand bar that appears during low tide that leads to a small island. We checked the tide levels and decided to check out the island for ourselves. The tide was low enough cars could even drive onto the sand bar when we were there. We walked all the way across and hiked a small trail on the island. Wildflowers cover the island and there are beautiful views of Bar Harbor.