The Beauty Around Us

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Posts tagged ‘Lighthouse’

Maine Vacation: Winding Down

We ate breakfast at McDonald’s once again, after a break for a couple of days.  My meal of choice this past week has been a bacon, egg and cheese bagel, hash browns and orange juice.  Bob ordered two sausage burritos, hash browns and coffee.

This morning we visited the Maine State Aquarium, located in West Boothbay Harbor.  After paying the $7.00 each admission fee, we walked past the gift shop into the aquarium.  The first thing we noticed were two large touch tanks.  At center stage was a tank that held sharks and skates.  We petted a shark!  Its skin felt like sandpaper.  Inside the second touch tank, the Tidepool Touch Tank, were lobsters, horseshoe crabs, hermit crabs, sea cucumbers and other invertebrates.  You could touch AND pick up any of the invertebrates in this tank.  Recessed tanks along the walls held a variety of species native to the Gulf of Maine.

We attended a talk on lobsters.  The Aquarium features lobsters in all sizes and colors.

This lobster was in the Tidepool Touch Tank.

We learned why a lobster is banded. The bands prevent lobsters from eating each other!

We met Neptune.

This is Neptune, a 14-lb lobster. His age is estimated to be between 15-18 years old.

We learned that fishermen bring the aquarium odd-looking lobsters, e.g. lobsters with multiple claws or lobsters with no claws and a variety of colored lobsters.

Our granddaughters would have enjoyed spending time at the Maine State Aquarium.  Not only would they have enjoyed the touch tanks, but they would have enjoyed the opportunity to do some sport fishing from the aquarium dock.  Rods and reels are available free-of-charge, and staff provides necessary instruction.  We watched some children fishing for a few minutes.  We didn’t see anyone catch a fish.  There were a couple lobster traps hanging from the dock, which were available to be pulled up.  One trap contained a lobster, which was dropped back into the water.  The trap that we pulled up had a crab in it.  We just dropped the crab and trap back into the water.

Leaving the aquarium, we returned to Pioneer Motel at 12:30 pm.

Around 4:30 pm we drove into Boothbay Harbor, where we enjoyed the refreshing breeze and bought pizza (2 slices each) at Pier 1 Pizza. 

Boothbay Harbor Footbridge

Boothbay Harbor Footbridge

Our Lady Queen of Peace Church

Boothbay Harbor Waterfront

Boothbay Harbor Waterfront (near where we bought pizza)

Boothbay Harbor Waterfront (near where we bought pizza).

Leaving Boothbay Harbor we drove to Southport Island to Newagen, where we saw The Cuckolds Lighthouse once again. 

The Cuckolds Lighthouse

Bob and I on dock with The Cuckolds Lighthouse behind us

We took Route 27 north to River Road through Damariscotta to the Mobil Fuel Station, where we filled up.  We will start home in the morning with a full tank.  We returned to Pioneer Motel around 7:30 pm.

This blog post concludes Day 8 of our 10-day Maine vacation (June 28-July 7, 2019).

– TO BE CONTINUED –

Maine Vacation: A Relaxing Day

We didn’t eat breakfast out today, having purchased instant oatmeal in a cup and fruit last night for today’s breakfast.

Today was a relaxing day.  We did very little sightseeing, visiting places less than 20 miles away from Pioneer Motel. 

In the morning we drove to Ocean Point, located in the village of East Boothbay, where we went for walk alongside the ocean.  The ocean view, which included Ram Island Lighthouse off in the distance, was phenomenal.  As we were walking back to our car, we spotted two seals!  

Ocean Point – one of many seasonal homes

Ocean Point – A variety of flowers lined both sides of Ocean Drive.  The smell was divine. 

Ocean Point – more seasonal homes

Ocean Point – In the distance is Ram Island Lighthouse.  Beyond that lighthouse is another lighthouse.  I will update this blog post, when I determine the identity of that lighthouse.

Ocean Point – One of two seals!  The second seal is farther right, almost out of frame.

Ocean Point – Ram Island Lighthouse

Leaving Ocean Point we drove into Boothbay Harbor.  This was our second visit.  We browsed a few shops.  In one shop we purchased kaleidoscopes, one for each granddaughter.  In another shop we were surprised to find a maritime history museum of sorts.  The Windjammer Emporium blends a maritime history component with nautically themed merchandise.

This is one of many historical displays found in the Windjammer Emporium.  Shown here are models of two schooners: the Sherman Zwicker (left) and the Blue Nose.

Located along Atlantic Avenue in Boothbay Harbor is Fishermen’s Memorial.

Fishermen’s Memorial honors the proud independent Maine fishermen who lost their lives at sea.

While I photographed Fishermen’s Memorial, Bob enjoyed the harbor view.

A short distance farther along Atlantic Avenue is a giant statue of “The Old Lobster Fisherman”.

Old Lobster Fisherman Statue

This is a GIANT statue.

I am 5’6″ tall, and I reach only the Old Lobster Fisherman’s knees.

I don’t know how long the Old Lobster Fisherman has stood here.  My first visit to Boothbay Harbor was in 1983; he was standing there then.

We got lunch at the Subway in Boothbay and drove to a nearby park to eat. 

After lunch, we returned to Pioneer Motel, where we stayed for rest of the afternoon.

Around 6:00 pm we drove to Damariscotta Mills – home of one of Maine’s oldest and most productive alewife fisheries. 

Damariscotta Mills Fish Ladder

Be sure to click on the link above for Damariscotta Mills to learn all about alewives and the fish ladder.

We made a return trip to Boothbay Harbor, where we ate dinner at the Harborside Tavern.  Bob ordered fish and chips; I ordered a harborside burger.  For seating we sat at a corner table, where we had a splendid view of the Boothbay Harbor footbridge and the water on both sides.

Bob’s Fish and Chips at Harborside Tavern

My Harborside Burger at Harborside Tavern

And, yes, I did eat all of the burger.  I didn’t eat all the bread, though!  The burger was delicious!  We had room for dessert, too.  We stopped at Wannawaf, located below the restaurant, for a small serving of ice cream in a cup, before returning to Pioneer Motel.

This blog post concludes Day 6 of our 10-day Maine vacation (June 28-July 7, 2019).

– TO BE CONTINUED –

 

“Where the Mountains Meet the Sea” and More Lighthouses

Today was a long day of sightseeing.

On our way to Camden, we stopped for a delicious and filling breakfast at The Rockport Diner in Rockport, ME.

Leaving Rockport, we drove through Camden to Camden Hills State Park.  We paid an entry fee of $6.00 each to enter the state park. Our goal was to go to the scenic vista on top of Mount Battie.  We had two choices.  We could either hike or drive the Auto Road to the top of Mount Battie.  We chose the driving option.

Mount Battie Stone Tower

The Mount Battie Stone Tower was built in 1921 and recognizes “the services of the men and women of Camden in the World War, 1914-1918”.

From this vantage point magnificent views of Camden Harbor, Penobscot Bay and the surrounding countryside can be enjoyed.

Camden is “where the mountains meet the sea”.

“All I could see from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood;
I turned and looked another way,
And saw three islands in a bay.”
~Edna St. Vincent Millay

It is believed that Edna St. Vincent Millay wrote the poem “Renascence”, while enjoying the view from the summit of Mount Battie.

 

Leaving Camden we drove to Marshall Point Lighthouse, which is located near the fishing village of Port Clyde.

Did you watch the movie “Forest Gump”?  Marshall Point Lighthouse is where Forest Gump concluded his long run.

Marshall Point Lighthouse

Marshall Point Lighthouse

Marshall Point Lighthouse and Keepers House

Marshall Point Lighthouse

There were two lighthouses that we wanted to visit in Rockland: Owls Head Lighthouse and Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse.  We saw Owls Head Lighthouse first.

Owls Head Lighthouse

Owls Head Lighthouse

This last photograph was one of my favorites of the day.

We ate lunch at Rockland Cafe, which Bob’s sister had recommended to us.  It was a good recommendation.  Bob had a chef salad.  I had a chicken salad sandwich and clam chowder.  We had dessert too — blueberry crisp with ice cream for Bob and peanut butter pie for me.

After lunch we drove to Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse. 

Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse

The lighthouse is at the end of a 7/8-mile-long breakwater, so visiting requires a nearly two-mile round trip walk.   Bob walked on the breakwater about 3/4 of the way to the lighthouse.  When thunder and lightning started, Bob turned around.  I didn’t walk on the breakwater.  It had recently rained, and I did not have the confidence to walk the uneven rocks that I suspected were slick.  I entertained myself on the shore, while Bob was walking to the lighthouse, by photographing seagulls and talking to people passing by.

Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse with Seagull

After talking for a few minutes with a man, his wife and son they decided to walk out to the lighthouse (again).  They attempted to reach the lighthouse earlier, but turned around when it started to rain.  I told them to say hello to Bob, if they saw him on his way back.  He would be the man with the bald head.  I have to laugh again because, when I mentioned the bald head, the man patted his own head and said “like mine”.  Within a couple minutes the man and I had concocted a story to go along with the family saying hello to Bob.

“Hey, wait!  You are Bob, aren’t you?  Hello!

“Do you remember me? We went to high school together at Warren Area High School.”

Does Bob look confused?  He was confused for a few seconds.

This is the point in time, when the truth was told.

What fun that was!

Oh, Look! I didn’t have to walk out the breakwater to get a good picture of the lighthouse. I love my zoom lens!

You can see by looking at the map at the beginning of this post that we didn’t take a direct route back to Pioneer Motel.  We decided to see a bit more of Mid-Coast Maine.  It is a good thing that we had the Garmin GPS with us.   Data was not available on our mobile phones for most of our travels today.

This blog post concludes Day 5 of our 10-day Maine vacation (June 28-July 7, 2019).

– TO BE CONTINUED –

Maine Vacation: More Island Hopping, Red’s Eats, Another Lighthouse and More Ice Cream

We got up shortly before 6:00 am, got showered and dressed.  We departed Pioneer Motel at 7:00 am to embark on today’s adventures.  With the exception of arriving at Pioneer Motel and leaving for home, today was the only day we drove in the direction of Wiscasset.  We purposely chose lodging east of Wiscasset, as that was the direction for the majority of the places that we wished to see during vacation.

We stopped for breakfast at McDonald’s in Bath and, then, drove to Land’s End on Bailey Island.

The Scenic Mackeral Cove on Bailey Island

 

Land’s End on Bailey Island

Land’s End and the Lobsterman Statue

Lobsterman Statue at Land’s End

Portland sculptor Victor Kahill created a lobsterman statue in 1939 for the New York World’s Fair. The statue at Land’s End is a replica of the one created for the World’s Fair. A plaque on the base reads: “A memorial to all Maine fishermen who have devoted their lives to the sea.”

Land’s End Beach and a Clifftop House

While I was taking pictures, Bob was looking through binoculars.  He spotted a lighthouse way, way, way out in Casco Bay.

Halfway Rock Lighthouse in Casco Bay

I took this photograph of the Halfway Rock Lighthouse with a lens having a 35 mm equivalent focal length of 600mm.  The photograph is heavily cropped.  Like I wrote earlier, this lighthouse was way, way out there!  If you click on the link “Halfway Rock Lighthouse” (in red), there is a map that shows where in Casco Bay the Halfway Rock Lighthouse is located.

Before starting our drive back to Route 1, we browsed the Land’s End Gift Shop.  We made two purchases: a packet of Downeast Maine Wild Lupine Seeds and a small pillow for Stacey that reads “Shut the Duck Up”. 

Leaving Land’s End, we stopped at the trail to Giant’s Stairs.  Bob walked part of the very narrow trail, which was waterlogged in places. 

He didn’t find the stairs.  He kept seeing houses and didn’t want to go on private property. 

We stopped at Mackeral Cove, both coming and going.  On our way back to Route 1 we drove down to the cove.

Mackeral Cove

Our last stop before leaving Bailey Island was at the Cribstone Bridge.  This bridge connects Bailey and Orr’s Islands.

Cribstone Bridge

We walked across the bridge to Orr’s Island and walked back to Bailey Island.

It was only 10:30 am when we completed our planned sightseeing activities, so we decided to add another point of interest–Pemaquid Lighthouse.

As we were driving through Wiscasset we decided to stop for lunch at Red’s Eats.

Red’s Eats

After a 2-hour wait in line, we got our food.  We ordered two lobster rolls and one large order of onion rings. 

Red’s Eats Lobster Rolls and Onion Rings

Was it worth the long wait in line?  YES!

I had some leftover lobster.  We dropped it off in the refrigerator in our motel room and continued to Pemaquid Point Light, which is located in Pemaquid Point Lighthouse Park.

Pemaquid Lighthouse and Keepers House

Bob hiked below the lighthouse to the ledges.  I felt my balance was off, so I didn’t make the descent.  On hindsight, I believe I could have made this hike, if we had taken our hiking poles out of the car!

Bob’s view of the lighthouse from the ledges

Pemaquid Point Lighthouse

We stopped at Harbor Ice Cream in New Harbor, shortly after leaving Pemaquid Point Lighthouse.  Bob ordered sugar-free vanilla ice cream.  He said it was the best vanilla ice cream he has ever eaten.

This blog post concludes Day 4 of our 10-day Maine vacation (June 28-July 7, 2019).

– TO BE CONTINUED –

Maine Vacation: Lighthouses, Island Hopping, Boothbay Harbor, a Fort and a Museum

We got up around 5:00 am naturally, without an alarm.  We slept well.  Our king-sized bed was firm and comfortable.  The room temperature was comfortable.  We were showered and dressed by 6:30 am.  The bathroom is small, the shower stall smaller still.  The bathroom is adequate, though, with hot water, sufficient lighting, an exhaust fan, a new vanity, and clean.  I am, once again, thankful that we booked a room at Pioneer Motel for our week-long stay in Maine.

It rained (and thundered) overnight.  Sitting outside on our covered porch at 6:30 am this morning I hear birdsong and see water puddles all over.  Across the highway the trees are shrouded in fog.  It is early enough on a Sunday morning that there are moments when there is no traffic noise from the highway.  

The weather forecast for today calls for scattered showers and thunderstorms, with a high of 68 degrees.  There is a 50% chance for rain.  I believe today will be our worse day weather wise.  The rest of the week looks lovely.

We went shopping at Hannaford Supermarket in Damariscotta and then went to breakfast at McDonald’s.

We spent half the day sightseeing in the Boothbay Harbor Region and half the day relaxing.  It was a long 2 days travel to get here.  A little downtime is good.

Our first sightseeing stop was on Southport Island, where we saw the Cuckolds Lighthouse.

The Cuckolds Lighthouse can be seen in the distance from the Newagen Boat Dock at Cape Newagen on Southport Island.

Our second stop was at Capitol Island. 

I searched online for a description of Capitol Island.  I found a perfect description of the island on a Knickerbocker Project Stories page. Capitol Island is:

“a quintessential summer community on an island just three-quarters of a mile long and 700 feet at its widest point. It is a place where everyone-knows-everyone, and the main dirt road of 15 mph is busier with local foot traffic than cars. By and large, the properties on Capitol Island are owned by the original families of the 1870s—translating to one of Maine’s most intact historic summer communities.”

I visited Capitol Island for the first time in May 1983 with my ex-husband.  We stayed several nights at Boulder Lodge, a cottage owned by his mother’s family.  Between 1983 and 1990 my ex-husband and I spent several vacations at Capitol Island.  With the exception of one year, when we spent an extended vacation on the island alone, we vacationed with my in-laws.  In 1987 my parents visited us at Capitol Island.  In 1989 friends visited us at Capitol Island.  In 1990 my sister-in-law and two nephews visited us at Capitol Island.  I loved it on the island.  My vacations were always peaceful and restful.  I am thankful for the opportunity I had to revisit Capitol Island one more time.  I am happy that I was able to show Bob the island that I have talked about with him over the 20 years that we have been married.

We parked the car at the “casino”, just over the Capitol Island Bridge.  The casino is a community center, not a gambling institution. 

Capitol Island Bridge

We walked from the casino to the dock at the end of island and back.  The island has changed very little since I was last here.  The landscaping is different, with more flowering bushes now.  Some of the homes have been updated.  I noticed no cottages that had fallen into disrepair.  I noticed that Boulder Lodge still belongs to my ex-husband’s mother’s family, as evidenced by a sign posted at the cottage. 

a place on Capitol Island called “Pig Cove”

Boulder Lodge

Turtle Rock

I, and others, have walked out to Turtle Rock at low tide.

The dock at the end of Capitol Island

Capitol Island’s “Back Beach” — Boulder Lodge and this place were my favorite places on Capital Island.

We stayed here only a few minutes.  I would have stayed longer, explored a bit, if the mosquitoes and gnats weren’t so bad.

This is the main dirt road on Capitol Island

Boulder Lodge is the cottage on the left, surrounded by trees.

This beautiful home was formerly known as the Albonegon Inn.  It is now a family owned home and available for rental through Airbnb.

I don’t know how I managed to see the sailboat to the left of the Albonegon Inn.  It was so foggy!  Fog horns were blowing the entire time we were on the island.

On our way back to our car a man and woman were approaching their car parked at Boulder Lodge.  I couldn’t help myself.  I asked if they knew my ex-husband’s mother’s family.  Not only did they know the family, they WERE members of the family.  My ex-husband’s maternal uncle owned the cottage, when we stayed there.  The man walking to his car was my ex-husband’s cousin, the uncle’s son! We chatted for a few minutes, reminiscing.  We soon went our separate ways.  We returned to our car; the cousin and his wife began their drive to Portland ME.

Our third stop was in Boothbay Harbor, where we walked from our car, across the footbridge and back to our car.  We will be visiting Boothbay Harbor a few more times this vacation.

Boothbay Harbor Footbridge

Boothbay Harbor Footbridge

Lupines

Our last sightseeing stop this morning was at the Fort Edgecomb State Historic Site in Edgecomb ME.

Fort Edgecomb was built in 1808–1809. The two-story octagonal wooden blockhouse is the centerpiece of the historic site.

This map shows this morning’s sightseeing route.

We finished sightseeing around 11:30 am and returned to Pioneer Motel.  We relaxed until 4:30 pm, at which time we went out to find Hendricks Head Lighthouse, located on Southport Island, and to get something to eat.  We saw Hendricks Head Lighthouse twice, once before dinner and once after dinner.  Before dinner, rain and fog impacted our viewing of the lighthouse.  At times we could barely see the lighthouse. 

Hendricks Head Lighthouse

Bob took this picture of me, while I was photographing Hendricks Head Lighthouse.

The picture that I took from that vantage point is displayed below.

Hendricks Head Lighthouse

After dinner the fog and rain were replaced with cloudy skies and sunshine. 

Hendricks Head Lighthouse

Note also that before dinner that the tide was pretty low.  After dinner the tide was in.  Remember the picture that Bob took of me out by these rocks?  I walked out on the beach to the base of the rocks that you see in the foreground, when I took the close-up before dinner picture of the lighthouse.  Water surrounds those rocks in the after dinner picture.

We ate dinner at Robinson’s Wharf (Lobster roll for Bob and a fish fry for me).   We ate inside, although we would have preferred outdoor seating.  Unfortunately it was raining.

On our way back to Pioneer Motel we stopped at the Ice Cream Hut in Boothbay for dessert.  

Ice Cream Hut and Shell Museum

In addition to ice cream there is a shell museum, miniature golf and arcade games.  We had ice cream and walked through the seashell museum, which is housed in the covered bridge.

This blog post concludes Day 3 of our 10-day Maine vacation (June 28-July 7, 2019).

– TO BE CONTINUED –

Chincoteague Vacation – Day 6

On Day 6 of our vacation (Thursday, April 11th), after eating breakfast, we went to Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge.  We drove, rather than ride our bicycles.  It was a chilly and windy morning, with a temperature reading of 49 degrees.

We saw NINE wild horses in the lighthouse parking lot and watched as they walked down Beach Access Road to the Wildlife Loop. 

Wild Ponies in the Lighthouse Parking Lot

Wild Pony in the Lighthouse Parking Lot

Wild Ponies in the Lighthouse Parking Lot

Wild Ponies Walking Down the Beach Access Road Towards the Wildlife Loop

Wild Ponies Walking Along the Beach Access Road to the Wildlife Loop

There are 8 wild ponies in these two pictures; however, we saw a total of 9 ponies.

Wild Ponies Walking Toward the Wildlife Loop

One of 9 Wild Ponies Making its Way to the Wildlife Loop

This was the straggler, the 9th wild pony.

Seeing the horses was really cool.  We have always seen evidence that the horses have been on Beach Access Road, but had not seen them there before.

Before leaving the Wildlife Refuge, we visited the Assateague Lighthouse.

Assateauge Lighthouse

The Assateague Lighthouse stands 142 feet high.

After visiting the lighthouse, we returned to the warmth of our vacation home.  Bob turned on the heat for the first time since our arrival.  For the next few hours I washed, dried and folded two loads of laundry; we ate lunch (ready-made lasagna and cheesecake); and we relaxed, enjoying the peaceful setting of our Airbnb vacation home, Tranquil Shores.  

Around 3:00 pm we left for one more visit to Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. We drove around the Wildlife Loop three times.

Wildlife Loop Snake

Wildlife Loop Great Blue Heron

Wildlife Loop Cattle Egret

Wildlife Loop Turtle

Turtle Crossing the Road at Wildlife Loop

Wildlife Loop Little Blue Heron (adult)

We drove also to the beach and back, along Beach Access Road.  We were saying so long, until next time, to a place that we have grown to love.

Leaving the Wildlife Refuge, we picked up a 12-inch sub at Subway to share for dinner and went to Island Creamery for ice cream.  Yes!  We ate dessert first.

Returning to our vacation home around 5:00 pm we discovered piles of dirt had been placed in the deep holes (craters in some instances LOL) on the road to Tranquil Shores.  Thankfully a resident pulled in after us.  We didn’t know if we should drive on the grassy area to the right of the dirt piles (to go around them).  She told us it was okay.  According to the resident, the piles of dirt will be graded the next day.  I passed this information to our host, as I thought he might be interested.  Our host replied: “I’m so glad we finally have it getting done. Last winter was so hard on the road!  Corralling all the neighbors to pitch in was a project in and of itself!”  

TO BE CONTINUED

Easter Vacation – Chincoteague Island, VA and Returning Home

It am still blogging about our the day’s activities on Saturday, March 31st.  We visited two Chincoteague, VA parks upon our return to home base from Assateague Island, MD.

The Robert N. Reed Downtown Waterfront Park is located at the intersection of Main and Mumford Streets.

_LG25703A statue of Misty of Chincoteague stands at the entrance to the park.

_LG25708The Evening Star was docked at the park.

The seagulls look different than they do at home.

_LG25704
This is a Bonaparte’s Gull, I believe.

_LG25707

There are four Adirondack chairs in the park.  The chairs are 10 feet tall and weigh more than 500 pounds.  The chairs arrived in Chincoteague in the summer of 2014 and promote the state’s “Virginia is for Lovers” tourism slogan.  They had been located at Virginia’s Kiptopeke State Park since May 2012.

20180331_193301597_iOSSomeone took our picture on the “LOVE chairs” in exchange for me taking their picture.

 

Chincoteague Veteran’s Memorial Park, located on Eastside Road, is another lovely waterfront park. There is a great view of Assateague Island Lighthouse from Veterans Memorial Park.

_LG25711
Assateague Island Lighthouse,
as seen from Chincoteague Veteran’s Memorial Park

_LG25715View from Chincoteague Veteran’s Memorial Park
The bridge to Assateague Island can be seen in this picture.

 

We checked out of Best Western Chincoteague around 6:30 the morning of Easter Sunday, April 1st, but not before enjoying a scrumptious breakfast at the hotel.

We departed the hotel at 6:40 am.  Our drive home was uneventful. We made a couple bathroom stops and one fuel stop. We received a $0.10/gallon discount on the cost of fuel, as we did throughout our vacation.  I found information online about the fuel discount. Exxon Mobil is offering $0.10 off per gallon at participating stations on fill ups through July 10th when you pay through the Exxon Mobil Speedpass+ app. The promotion began on March 29th.  The fuel discount was a pleasant surprise.

We ate Easter dinner at Chili’s in Altoona, PA using a $25 gift card to offset the cost. Easter dinner was non-traditional. Baked ham was not on the menu. We ordered steak dinners. For dessert we shared a chocolate chip cookie with ice cream.

We returned home around 4:30 pm.

What an enjoyable vacation we had! We look forward to making a return trip to Chincoteague, VA.  It is always a quiet, relaxing time away from home, when we vacation there.

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