Bar Harbor, ME Day 3 Park Loop Road Drive

June 28, 2023 As June draws to a close, the weather forecast calls for showers most days and cooler temps with fog in the mornings. It’s disappointing, but what can we do? It is what it is! We made plans to do a drive through Acadia NP today. Not only do we have to work around the weather, but trying to limit crowd problems with parking and 4th of July vacationers next week can be challenging. We’ll do the best we can. We picked up Mary and John around 10:30 and with lunches packed, we headed towards the park. There was a traffic slowdown on the way to the park due to an accident.

The stoppage didn’t last long and we were on our way into Acadia NP on Park Loop Road with our handy-dandy map.

Our first stop was at Frenchman Bay overlook. The fog was still around, but we were able to get a view of the Bay, Bar Harbor’s pier, and “The Bar” that we walked on yesterday. Even from this distant vantage point, we could see that it was not quite “low tide” yet which would occur at 12:52. Low tide was almost an hour later today. The area we walked on yesterday was much thinner and there was clearly more water visible on both sides. You can see the people walking on it near the middle of the picture.

The Park Loop Road takes you along the coast on the eastern side of Mount Desert Island within the park. We picked a good day to go on this drive because there was very little traffic and we didn’t have an issue with finding parking in certain locations. I guess the weather might have kept people at home. The road was very picturesque!

Our next stop on the drive was Sand Beach. Sand Beach has a parking lot and we only had to wait a few minutes before a parking space opened up for us. We parked and walked down the stairs to the beach. On a normal summer day, you can find people swimming and hanging out on the sand. Today’s weather didn’t keep some brave swimmers from going into the water, but there was no one sitting on the beach.

We all walked down to the water and stood by the rocks for some pictures.

We took a walk down the beach to the area near the cliffs. Mary saw something she wanted to get a picture of. You can see her on the right side of the picture.

We walked back along the beach and slowly made our way back to the parking lot. John looked so lonesome on the beach.

As we walked back, the fog lifted a little because the winds had picked up and then we could see the top of The Beehive.

Farther down the road, was Thunder Hole. This is a very popular tourist spot. Thunder Hole is a carved out inlet along the rocky shoreline.

When a storm, big waves, or turning tide forces waves into the narrow channel, the air escapes with a thunderous echo that is exciting to hear. The water rushes out and sends water into the air.

On calm days, you would never hear it, but today the wind had kicked up the waves and we were able to experience the “clap of thunder” that Thunder Hole is named for and feel the mist that escaped into the air.

We spent a great deal of time there listening to the “thunder” from Thunder Hole. We moved on down the road to Otter Cliff and Otter Point. I love looking at this rocky shoreline!

As we drove along Park Loop Road, we came to this beautiful rock bridge.

At first glance, we all thought that the water was up to the dark line mark on the bridge and that the small arches made a cool reflection on the water. On closer observation, Bob pointed out that those arches were very tall because the water level was way down. You can see the seaweed hanging on the bricks between the arches. It really played a trick on our eyes!

You can see it a little better from this side angle.

Mary and I walked along the brick retaining wall checking for shells and other interesting things we could find. Mary created this beautiful “flower” array with mussel shells that were left behind.

We left the Park Loop Road after traveling along the east coast and returned on Highway 3 which took us through the inner areas of the park. The road had some really cool arched, stone bridges along the way. Each one was a little different.

Highway 3 took us through the center of the park and brought us out at Seal Harbor. There were a lot of boats on moorings there in the harbor. It’s a picturesque little village!

On our drive back to the campground, we made one stop at an interesting place that had lots of colored buoys for sale. It’s the bright colors that caught our eye!

They even had buoys made into birdhouses! Very creative!

From there, we made it back to the campground and dropped off Mary and John. Bob and I had to make a stop at Walmart just 5 minutes up the road from the campground. When we got back to the campsite, Bob sat outside with Auggie while I put the groceries away. It began to rain quite heavily shortly after we got back, so we were lucky not to get rained on at the store. We were also very lucky today that we never got rained on while we spent time in the park. The fog had disappeared enough for us to get some nice views of the area. We got cleaned up after our drive and made dinner. Bob did the dishes while I gave Auggie his walk before it rained again. While we watched TV it rained off and on and the fog moved back in.

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