Sunday, June 8, 2014

Maine and Canada 2014

Bear with me, I'm going to do this all in one post!

We spent the first half of our vacation in and around Bar Harbor, ME.  It was Cheri's year to pick the half-marathon trip and she chose Maine.  This time, we decided to take the husbands and make a vacation out of it.  We stayed in a super cute cabin on a large pond, complete with canoes and kayaks.  Which by the way, I still don't think are that much fun.  Anyway, this is the view from our cabin.
We spent the first few days doing some hiking in Acadia National Park which is really beautiful.

These photos are all at or near Sand Beach-the only part of the  park's coastline that is actually a sandy beach.
 Don't be fooled though-even though it was almost June, that water is NOT warm!

Many of these were taken along Great Head Trail and Ocean Trail.  Both are very scenic but Ocean trail is easier and longer, offering some really fantastic settings.  
Otter Cliff

These are from the summit of Cadillac Mountain.  This is the first place in the US that sees the sunrise.  But you have to be there at like 4 in the morning.  We skipped that, but did enjoy the evening views.

  Jordan Pond-we were only here briefly but there are some trails that go around it which are probably pretty.
 Our cute little trail friend.
 We also took a few other short trails.  There is a lot of granite in Maine.  All the trails to the ocean end in a big jumble of rocks, many of which are large slabs of granite.  Subsequently, everything is Maine is made of granite-sidewalk curbs, flower gardens, they line the streets and highways with big cubes as "guardrails" and more!

This is the quintessential photo of Acadia.  It can be found all over town on artwork, postcards, maps, etc.  What they don't tell you is it's not easy to get that shot!  If you go around the trail to the other side of the house it's completely underwhelming and not at all scenic.  If you take the trail down on this side, it ends in a pole of rocks and very jagged  shoreline with an obstructed view of the lighthouse.  You have to climb down the rocks all the way to the ocean to get this.  Or be in a boat.  While not too challenging I would not suggest anyone with small children or mobility issues try it!

Sunday, was our race.  Our "support crew" did a good job of meeting us at several locations on the course, even though they were not too excited about the signs we made for them.

We were sad that this half-marathon gave glasses instead of medals, and kind of lame t-shirts as well, but the coastline we views we had while running were really spectacular.  And the weather was perfect this time (as opposed to foggy in year one and rainy in year two!).  They did have ice cream and pizza at the end, but we had to wait awhile for the pizza.

We got a huge kick out of this newspaper article we saw-yes, the spelling of Jesky is different but still-how funny!  That would have been a really interesting vacation!
 Our last night we had dinner in Bass Harbor-there are little lobster towns like this all over.
 Kelly and her husband drove up and spent a few days in Bar Harbor, joining us for dinner both nights-we had a lot of fun and some good visiting and catching up.
Monday, the rest of the crew headed home and we make the drive to Quebec City.  It's really pretty, and very unique place.  But be prepared to do a lot of walking.  400 year old cities are not designed with cars and parking in mind!  In addition, Old Quebec is literally built on a cliff.  So when they speak of upper and lower town, they really mean it!  There are several flights of stairs to get you between the two!

This is a really pretty time of year to visit Quebec-they have a ton of lilacs and other flowering trees and bushes that make everything look and smell wonderful.
 This is taken from just outside town showing you the old town, boardwalk and the river.
 The biggest attraction is the Chateau Frontenac, a very large and famous hotel.

 There are many dessert places in old Quebec. I ate this for breakfast one morning.  It was delightful.
 Just outside town a few miles is Montmorency falls.  While a very striking waterfall, the surroundings leave a little to be desired.  One side is a bare cliff and pretty ugly.  And they must have had a rough winter because there was a lot of construction and clean up going on with some debris still laying around.

We spent the last day (really half day) in Montreal as our plane would leave from the Montreal airport early in the morning.  We had limited time here which is just as well since a visit to the city required yet more walking and all we had done on this trip so far is walk and run!  It was exhausting.  But we did the trail up Mt. Royal to see the overlook of the city and the this cross.

 The view of the river from the pier
 Notre-Dame Basilica-we were too late to go inside.
Luckily we have the weekend to recover, but with all the barn work I did yesterday I'm not sure that's going so well!


Karissa said...

Beautiful pictures! Looks like you had a great time!

Diana said...

Look wonderful!

Greg S said...

Awesome pictures. Its been ages since I have been in Maine (grew up in Mass.)

Did you get to hear people say "Bah Habah" and all the Maine dialect?