Saturday, May 19, 2018

All about ME! (part 1)

Yay, we made it to Maine!  We spent about six weeks there, exploring the lower bays from Portland on Casco Bay north through Penobscot Bay, and as far north as Somes Sound in Mt Desert Island in Acadia NP.  The distance from Portland to Mt Desert Island is not even a hundred miles, and so to spend so much time is a small cruising area meant we got to slow down and really enjoy ourselves.

One major adjustment when cruising in Maine is learning to avoid the lobster pots.  They are everywhere!!  Here was a noticeably dense section on our way to an anchorage in Quahog Bay. 

One of our first stops, and one that really set the tone of cruising in Maine, was Jewell Island on Casco Bay.  It is only about 6 miles from Portland, making it a wildly popular weekend stop, but on the weekdays, it was busy but still manageable.  It was here that we were introduced to the Maine Island Trail Association, an organization that maintains access to various coastal islands for camping and hiking.   There were some interesting WWI and WWII lookout towers on Jewell Island to explore, and generally, a cool little spot to hang out.

A view out from the tower offered a nice view of Casco Bay.

View of our small, and a bit busy, anchorage at Jewell Island (Tatiana is center and at the back).  There would be at least three more boats packed in here before nightfall.

We enjoyed exploring the rugged shoreline around the anchorage.

Just east of Jewell Island, we stopped at Eagle Island SP, which maintains the historical home of North Pole Explorer Robert Peary.  It is a remarkable house and setting and the story of this Arctic adventurer was fascinating.

Leaving Eagle Island, we headed east as we departed Casco Bay.  We made several stops along this section of coastline.  We passed through Quahog Bay and Sequin Island on our way to Boothbay Harbor. 

Seguin Island is home to the Seguin Island Lighthouse, which is now illuminated with electricity, and so the lighthouse keepers are no longer needed.  Instead, the home has been converted to a museum and volunteer caretakers residence.  The views here were breathtaking, and the wild roses, raspberries and blueberries were marvelous. 

Here's a view from offshore looking toward the island and lighthouse. 

Lighthouse and caretakers home.  

We stopped in several other bays along the shore, but were ultimately making our way to Penobscot Bay.  This large bay offers semi protected waters. We still ran into a fair bit of fog, and while mostly not interesting to look at, we did occasionally get to see the low fog clouds in the distance, which were quite fun to watch as they meander. 

As we entered Somes Sound on Mt Desert Island, there was a sailboat race going on through in the fog.  Somehow, this felt strangely familiar.

Anchored in Somes Sound.  The megayacht in the background did, indeed anchor with us puny sailboats, and yes, they have a helicopter on top.  We had actually seen this particular boat once before, last winter at Warderick Wells at the Exuma Land and Sea Park.

While anchored in Somes Sound, we took a fun shoreside hike to the rim above the anchorage to look down a our little floating home (on the lower right).

Another nice overlook at the view toward the mouth of Somes Sound.

The return trip through the coast of Maine was full of even more beautiful stops and sights, but you'll have to wait for the sequel...