July 1 to July 7 (Moncton, NB to Auburn, ME)
Click on the photo for each day to view that day's photos.
Day 68 - July 1, 2022
Hopewell Rocks, New Brunswick. The highest tides in the world are here and twice a day you can walk on the ocean floor, then you better get out because the water rises quickly. Fortunately, the park rangers are there to make sure everyone is up before the danger is real.
Stunningly beautiful. It is a 15-minute hike down and then a 101-step staircase to the bottom. I decided I didn’t need the big wildlife lens because I thought I would only be taking landscape shots. Wrong. I had to walk back up and back down to get the lens. And then walk up and down again because I needed spare batteries.
It turns out that since 2009, Peregrine Falcons have been nesting here. Peregrines are on of my favourite birds. They are the fastest living creature on the planet. When they dive on prey (other birds in flight), they have been clocked at over 380 kms/hr! I ended up spending much of the day on a viewing platform overlooking the rocks which, on occasion, put me above the birds. Trying to catch these rocket ships in flight can be challenging to say the least. There are 2 adults and 4 babies. The “babies” have fledged (left the nest) and are already strong flyers. The adults would go out, catch some prey, and bring it back. Then take off with it and the young would fly after it. The winner would get the food, but the others would try to steal it. Training for the hunt. You know something if a little off when you are surrounded by the stunning beauty of Hopewell Rocks and the rocks and the tide are not the main attraction.
Anyway, I had a lot of difficulty narrowing the photos to this many. Trust me, there are several hundred more, good shots that didn’t make the cut. Oh yes, there are plenty of shots of Hopewell Rocks and a few others on the drive to and from too.
Day 69 - July 2, 2022
Fog and rain greeted us for the drive to St. Andrews by the Sea this morning. Too bad because the countryside looked like it would be quite beautiful if you could actually see it. However, we made the best of it with a few shots along the way including a couple covered bridges.
When we arrived at our destination the skies cleared and revealed a post card of a town. This is a beautiful place. First, I took a few shots of the 160ish year old house we are staying in, then a few around town. After a good dinner on a patio by the sea listening to live music, we watched a gorgeous sunset, and I tried my hand at some artistic late evening shots.
Day 70 - July 3, 2022
Our day started off in St. Andrews by the Sea at the Kingsbrae Garden. Joy loved her flowers and so I got a few shots of flowers and played around a bit with the macro lens too. Bonus, there were some birds that posed for me as well. The Grey catbird with the worm followed me around. I think it was trying to give me the worm as a present, I don’t know.
Then on to Maine. After playing 50 questions (20 weren’t enough) at the border, they let us through. A very nice drive to our “Waterfront Apartment” on Green Lake near Ellsworth. A beautiful apartment just steps to the water. I met the owners, Donna and Dave, and we sat on the dock and watched a pair of Loons with a day-old chick. Beautiful! Later my hosts even took me out for a sunset cruise on their boat.
Day 71 - July 4, 2022
Since we are staying right on the shores of a beautiful lake, with a family of loons living right here, so I decided to get up early (4:30 am) and shoot the sunrise and hopefully the loons. Good plan. The sky was clear, the lake calm and Mr. & Mrs. Loon put on a show. I hope you enjoy.
Then off to Acadia National Park. I had heard this was very scenic and again, it did not disappoint. First stop…Bar Harbor. Bar Harbor is a very upscale town with lovely old homes, hotels, resorts, bars and restaurants. Just one downside. It is July 4th. Me photographing bar Harbor and the 4th of July parade and festivities is a tradition since 8:30 this morning. A two-hour tradition. One and done. The place is packed! I did manage a great breakfast at one of the local eateries.
Then off to tour the rest of the park, starting with Sand Beach. Just one problem. The entire park is crawling with people. Parking is almost non-existent so when you get a spot you take it and walk. We did that, and after a few hours just drove around the rest of the park. We did get lucky at Bass Harbor Head Light Station. 40 parking spots, a ten minute wait for one, then a hike down to a great spot to shoot the lighthouse. When we came out, there were three of us leaving and thirty cars lined up waiting to get in. Whew. Glad we arrived when we did!
In the last picture…which one of these is not like the others?
Day 72 - July 5, 2022
NEWS FLASH…BREAKING NEWS…This just in…
Maine has mosquitoes! Oh, wait that’s not the news (but it’s true). The news is…
First a shot of Bud E. with a new friend then one from the window of our unit looking down to the lake. Then I went down to the dock. The loons have decided that I am not a threat and came within about 30 feet so, again I took too many photos. Here are a few of the best. And there are some good ones too!
Then we went on a short drive to Bangor, Maine. Did a little window shopping and took a few photos of some of the homes including the home of horror novelist Stephen King. Then a couple shots of a statue of Paul Bunyan. All in all, an uneventful day.
Day 73 - July 6, 2022
New day, new adventures. Today we left Green Lake and the Loon family and headed to Auburn, Maine. The day started off cloudy and foggy but, of course, I took the back roads as long as possible. We really enjoy the back roads and so there are quite a few shots taken at brief stops along the way. Then we came across a really cool bridge (the Penobscot Narrows Bridge) which led to trouble. Yes, Bud E. and I snuck into Fort Knox! No, not THAT Fort Knox, but the one in Maine. It wasn’t open until 9:00 (it was 8:00) but a lady parked outside the gate said we could just walk in and look around. So, we did. We left by 8:30 and it was all good.
The small towns along the coast of Maine look to be relatively affluent. Very large, gorgeous old homes and quaint shops. And loads of traffic! We went down to a place called Boothbay Harbor and couldn’t get a place to just park for a few minutes for photos. I wasn’t going to pay for 5 minutes so a few snaps out the window and we were gone. But it is a beautiful place. We even got a shot of an Eastern Bluebird.
Then on to Portland, Maine for a quick drive through and then on to Auburn.
Day 74 - July 7, 2022
It was an interesting start to the day with the fire alarm going off at 7:30 am. Fortunately, I was already up, showered and sitting at my computer. I grabbed Bud E., my camera gear (already packed), my computer and suitcase and was on the street in about 4 minutes (going down three floors of stairs). False alarm. Back in the room by 9:00, then off to IHOP for breakfast while the car got an oil change.
Next a hike through the Thorncrag Bird Sanctuary. We only saw one bird in a 3-mile hike and a couple squirrels. I tried to shoot some flies hovering in sunlight. Good luck with that, harder than it looks. Oh, and if you are thinking of doing this hike, beware. There have bean bear sightings!
Next a walk along the Auburn, Maine Riverwalk. It is a walk along the river (duh!) with signs showing the history of the city. Interesting. The river (Androscroggin River) was once one of the most polluted on the planet. A serious clean-up program started in the 70’s and the river has returned to almost normal. I don’t know what the story is with the bronze shoes (couldn’t find a sign), saw a large duck with impressive green feathers. A few other shots and then one of a fence, covered in locks. Odd.
On to Ashland, New Hampshire tomorrow.