Thursday, August 1, 2013


After a long, peaceful sleep in the mountains I head down to a river that I passed as the sun was setting the evening before. This stretch of the river is littered with boulders such that the flow has to turn almost 90 degrees to tumble down their slope then churn and right itself to fall down the next pile of rock. I slide down the front of a large round boulder into water so cold that I can barely take a breath. I spend a few minutes dipping in and out of the water wetting my hair and washing away the dirt. Then I climb across to one of the falls and sit on a rock in the midst of the churning water at the base. I let the water run over my legs for as long as I can stand then let the current carry me back to a sandy shore below the falls.
Feeling like I’ve washed away my experiences from the day before I get back to my car and drive towards Maine. Acadia is a unique park from most that I have seen. It shares Mount Desert Island with coastal villages where the wealthy have docked their boats likely long before the national park service was in existence. Driving through the park you pass in and out of natural areas; sometimes feeling completely isolated until you round and bend and there is an elementary school on the other side of the hill you were just climbing. It feels like the blue ridge parkway was condensed, coiled upon itself and dropped on an island.
I stop to hike the trail to North and South Bubble; two small mountains overlooking Jordan Pond. On my way back I take a trail leading down to the shore of Jordan Pond. The slope is a rubble pile of stones that have fallen down from the mountains and I have a lot of fun jumping and sliding from rock to rock on my way down.
On the shore of Jordan Pond I sit and rest my knees before attempting the return climb. Behind me I hear a high pitched grunt coming from a bush. Thinking that I’ve sat down too close to some creature’s litter I walk further down onto the beach while watching the bush. Branches shake and leaves clatter and an otter emerges, stares at me for a few seconds and then slinks over a washed up tree trunk and into the pond. He seems to be rooting around for food and dives into the foam between the rocks. I follow him along the shore for a while until the trail ends and he continues into the tangle of broken branches washed up. 

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