Acadia Mountain

Remember how a few months ago Yen and I suddenly got married because our families both happened to be in town at the same time? One of the activities we had planned when they visited was a trip to Acadia. We ended up having to cancel it, though, because in our ridiculous political climate, sequestration forced Acadia to make the difficult to decision to open on June 1 instead of their usual May 1. We had a lovely visit just the same, hanging out on Cape Cod and other local joints. But when David left, he said, “You still owe me one visit to Acadia.”

A few months passed, and I decided that October would be a good time to make good on my debt. Leaves, but still warm – perfect weather to drive up north. So I bought David a ticket, reserved a hotel room, and set out to wait.

And what happened? Now the federal government is shut down, and that means Acadia is closed. We never even toyed with not going, though. “If nothing else, I’ll just hop the fence,” said David, summing up exactly how Yen and I felt. So when he arrived last Thursday night, we all got a good night’s sleep and then headed up the next morning. And arrived in time for an afternoon hike on Acadia Mountain.

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See the white sign on the post next to us? It’s a notice explaining that the park is closed. I’ve been hearing reports that others have been arrested in the Grand Canyon and other parks, and that they’ll be using lack of notice as their defense. If we’d run into trouble, we’d’ve had no such option.

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Acadia hiking is different from a lot of our usual hikes, as you’ll see. It’s an island, and there isn’t space for long, drawn out trails leading to the top. Instead, you often head up neat little staircases to get the most out of the available square feet. Here we go.

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Almost immediately, David found that he had to get totally involved in the climb. Here he’s negotiating the path as it goes straight up a crevice.

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I know Yen always appreciates it when hikers wear bright colors so they’ll stand out in his photos. Good job, David.

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Here we are, almost at the top. Don’t relax yet, though.

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At last, we made it. The other thing I like about hiking national parks is they make such dramatic markers when you finally reach the top.

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Here we are in the distance, contemplating the view and relaxing. I think we were also discussing whether it was a duck that made the wake we saw way down below. What we’re looking at here is the only fjord in North America.

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As you can see here, it was getting later and colder, so I started donning layers.

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The trees are mixed, but mainly pretty close to peak. It feels very early this year. I wonder what that means.

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As we watched, the sun began to set over the mountains in the distance.

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As a common theme is making fun of my poses, I decided to go for a different one than usual: tree pose.

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At some point, we suddenly realized, “Wait, if the sun is going down, that means…” And we headed out. It was a little tricky toward the end as we came through the trees in the dark, but we obviously made it out just in time. And dinner tasted very, very good after all that work.

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