There’s a one-way driving & biking loop that goes around a good chunk of the park. We started out with that to get a feel for the place. First stop was heading up Cadillac Mountain (3) for a quick walk-hike to the view of the island and Bar Harbor. Our next pull-off was at the Thunder Hole (5) – we happened by right at high tide, which is the right time to be there. We climbed around on the rocks for a bit, but the day was apparently not right for the booming wave crashes that the location was known for.
Parking along the loop was obnoxious, particularly in the prime areas. So long as we had parked for the Thunder Hole, we took a walk back to Sand Beach which is apparently *the* beach in the park. We descended into the little harbor to see the beach, stood around for a bit acknowledging that indeed it was a beach and then headed back. We weren’t really planning on swimming or just laying there, so I’m not exactly sure what else we expected.
Third stop was Otter Point (6) (I think). I don’t remember why we stopped there, but we spent a while wandering the “beach” which really meant boulders, taking pictures, etc. After that we continued around the Park Loop road, scoping out a few possible paddles or hikes for futures days.
We took a quick jaunt to the North end of Eagle Lake and noticed that the wind was kicking up a pretty good amount of chop on the lake, indicating that maybe it wasn’t as protected as we thought, at least from the South. There was a couple in a tandem sailing kayaking who were going to go out. I wonder how they fared – they had a lot of gear, and seemed to know what they were getting into, but it also seemed like an adventure destined to fail since they were starting on the most leeward shore of the lake.
At the end of the Park Loop we headed into Bar Harbor. Bar Harbor is, I think, the most touristy town on the island so we just planned go see what it was all about. Bar Island (8) is directly in front of the town and at low tide is connected to the mainland by an exposed strip of land. Our arrival was conveniently timed just a bit before low tide and were able to walk over to the island. We hiked up to the top of the island (about a mile) but most of the time was spent poking around the beach and tide pools looking for crabs and other sea-life.
After the island, we found the nearest Walmart and stocked up on food, returned to the hotel (1) and made a second round of venison kebabs (we had a cooler, but figured the meat needed to be eaten pretty soon after thawing).