400 Slices
Medium 9780892725854

Mount Desert Rock Light

Caldwell, Bill Down East Books ePub

“Why here? What mad misanthrope chose to build a lighthouse on this hostile, forsaken rock, twenty-six miles offshore in perilous ocean?”

Mount Desert Rock is exposed to some of the most savage seas and gales of any light on the Atlantic Coast. Yet someone picked this place to erect a light to help mariners find the way to Mount Desert Island and Frenchman and Blue Hill bays on either side of it. And he ordered that the light be built upon a rock barely out of the ocean. The rock is a mere chunk of volcanic outcrop, a speck in the wild Atlantic. The nearest harbor is twenty-six miles away on the mainland.

On a calm day, you can walk every yard of this world in a few minutes; it is six hundred yards long and two hundred yards wide. On a calm day you might even feel safe and enjoy the ocean, twenty feet below the highest point on the rock at low tide.

In a storm, however, run fast for cover—the fury of the sea submerges every inch of the rock on which the light stands. The force of those seas is incredible. In a storm of 1842, say federal records, a mammoth rock eighteen feet long, fourteen feet wide, and six feet thick, weighing fifty-seven tons, was hurled by the wild ocean as though it were a toy! In another storm, a boulder weighing seventy-five tons was rolled like a hoop sixty feet by gigantic waves.

See All Chapters
Medium 9780892728060

Have you been to this historic garrison?

Andrew Vietze Down East Books ePub

This diminutive outpost doesn’t seem quite sturdy enough to stop rampaging French and Indians, does it? Luckily, this blockhouse was only one small part of a much larger fort, which was built in 1754 to protect the locals from just such an attack. The structure was sufficiently stout to survive for centuries — it was the oldest of its kind in the nation — until the great flood of April 1, 1987. That’s when one of Maine’s larger rivers broke its bounds and flushed the blockhouse and a lot of other stuff downstream. By that time the fort was part of a popular state park and the focal point of the community, which had literally sprung up around it. So the good people rebuilt it, using as many of the original timbers as they could collect. (Some had floated forty miles.) Have you been to this historic garrison? Turn to page 101 if you think you can identify this riverside spot.

See All Chapters
Medium 9780892729425

Route 6

John Gibson Down East Books ePub

Route 6

Augusta - Belgrade Lakes - Augusta

Highway: Routes 27, 225, 8

Distance: 56.5 miles (around loop)

MAINE contains hundreds of lakes and ponds, some gathered into tight clusters where the vacationing is good and the scenery grand. The Belgrade Lakes have exerted this kind of appeal for visitors for many years, and the region is full of private camps, children’s summer camps, public rental accommodations, boating services, and restaurants. Long Pond, Great Pond, North Pond, East Pond, McGrath Pond, and Ellis Pond constitute the Belgrade “lakes,” the latter two being the smaller bodies of water within this multilake aggregation. Surrounded by pine woods and backed by rolling hills, all these lakes have a quiet, quintessentially Maine flavor. The lakes reside in rural country; development in the area has been modest, with none of the big-resort ugliness often common at such places elsewhere. A trip through this region offers pleasant views any time of year, with striking foliage in autumn and swimming, boating, camping, and walking in summer.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781608930449

1 Kittery

Down East Books ePub

Off Route 103. Take Seapoint Road from Thaxter Road and look for the signs.

Latitude: 43.0879

Longitude: -70.6623

Kittery is known more for outlets than for the outdoors—among all the towns of southern Maine, it is probably the least associated with beaches. But it does indeed have several strands. The two that are arguably the most popular are Seapoint and Crescent, which flank Seapoint, a small peninsula between Gerrish Island and Brave Boat Harbor in Kittery Point. Both of them are pretty small compared to others up the road in York and Ogunquit and Wells—they’re in the 600-yard range—but they don’t tend to get as busy as the larger beaches do, either. You can usually find a place to spread out without too much difficulty.

What is hard, though, is parking. There’s a lot five minutes away, but it’s for town residents only and you have to have a Kittery solid waste sticker or face a $500 fine if you park there out of season. The lots are closed to non-residents from May 15 to September 30—basically prime beach season. The good news is that you can pose as a Kittery town resident by buying a sticker; the bad news is that there are only one hundred available each season, on a first-come basis, and they cost $125.

See All Chapters
Medium 9780892729746

Indoor Activities

Dena Riegel Down East Books ePub

See All Slices