We stayed at Seawall Campground for the entire week, arrived Sunday and left the following Sunday. I really liked this campground, due to its proximity to the ocean. We could ride our bikes and be playing in tide-pools in 5-minutes. You could smell the beach in the morning at the campsite, walk down to catch the sun rise and set. The campground had a small amphitheater that held ranger talks, Stephen & Odin attended a bat one that they reported was totally awesome.This campground is also located on the "quiet side" of the island.
The good, we hiked, biked, played in tide-pools, attended ranger talks, laughed around the campfire and saw a lot of beautiful sites.
There are 45-miles of carriage roads in Acadia National Park. They were built by John D. Rockefeller Jr. & family from 1913-1940. There are a lot of different entry points, occasional pit toilets, wild blueberry's on the peak points and really good signage. We didn't see any water refill stations along our ride, so we were happy we all had hydration bags and snacks.
I would have loved to do more than a day of riding, but when you are family vacationing everybody gets to pick one thing they really want to do, this was mine. Unfortunately it was full of tears and angry children, but somehow Stephen and I managed to laugh it off and get us all to complete a decent loop.
One popular riding destination is Cadillac Mountain. It is 1,530 feet and is the highest point along the North Atlantic Seaboard. We drove to the top multiple times, because I had to work a little and it was the only place my hot-spot worked and it was gorgeous so we didn't mind. I really hope that they try and figure out a way to invest in a shoulder or bike lane though, lots of bike traffic and even a tiny bit of space would make difference.
We did go down to Bar Harbor and do the tourist thing. Looked at overpriced souvenirs, watched the lobster boats come in and unload their haul. Walked an unexpected long time to The College of Atlantic for a Ranger Program, which Odin thoroughly enjoyed. Seriously, he really did, they had a touch tank and the Ranger discussed how to handle sea creatures when you come across them, what you might find, etc.
On our last full day, Odin earned his Junior Ranger badge and patch. If you are not aware, almost every National Park offers a Junior Ranger bade program. Stop at a Visitors Center, ask them for the Junior Ranger program. Your kid fills it out, does the tasks, goes back to the visitors center, turns it in, sometimes gets quizzed by a Ranger and gets a cool patch.
We wanted to avoid the heavy tourism near Bar Harbor Saturday so we stayed on the "quiet side" of the island and found a remote spot, Seal Cove Pond. There were 4 other people we came across. Stephen and Darby had a nice float in the canoe while Odin, myself and the dog splashed about in the water looking for any site of creatures.
The bad; talking with locals at the laundry mat about the meth problems in the area (not surprising, every town has its own drug problem), the black fly's, lobster is expensive no matter where you are, and the occasional adult or child breakdown.But it was still a great trip and we will definitely return!