Scenic Bar Harbor, Maine was the destination for our very first road trip together. That was only a few weeks after we had started dating, and the success of that road trip was a clear indication of wonderful things to come. This beatiful island is just far enough away that we had not yet returned for a second visit. Until this year, when we returned to celebrate Hali's 20th Anniversary of her 20th Birthday!
Our long weekend was comprised of hiking and climbing at various locations in the Acadia National Park. The weather forecast had been only partly promising, but the conditions turned out to be much better than we had expected -- four beautiful days in a row, with just a few minor intrusions of fog and wind.
We started the trip with a day of single pitch trad climbing on The Precipice (aka, "South Wall"). After getting lost on what we thought would be an extremely easy (5.3) route, we then found a nice little 5.5 climb with bolted anchors that allowed us to top-rope an enjoyable 5.9- route as well. When the day was done, we had decided that the routes were a bit more "stout" than we had expected, but probably in-line with Cathedral Ledge ratings. I guess we always hope it will be easier (smile).
The second day dawned a bit breezy for climbing, so we decided to do a little hiking instead. Based on some great recommendations from the friendly people at out B&B, we decided to try a trail up Pemetic Mountain (just a hill, for you serious hikers). There was nice weather on the way up and some very different terrain as compared to most NH hikes that we have done. There were very large trees spaced well apart as we ascended beautiful and diverse landscapes. The summit came fast and the we soon discovered that the mountain had been blocking the wind and some fog. We decided on a trail that would take us back down to the bridle path and then up Cadillac Mountain. Through some spotty fog and increasing winds we made it almost to the top of Cadillac. We turned around after resting in a wonderfully wind-less depression, and made it down with a total hike time of about 5.5 hours.
On the third day we tried out the vaunted "Story of O" route on the South Wall. This 3-star, 3-pitch, G-rated, 5.6 has a pretty nice line. However, the moves on the first pitch (through the chimney) made me think twice about the other 2 pitches. I must admit that the serious lead fall recently taken by a novice RI climber was weighing on my mind at his point... Caution won over our sense of adventure, and we bailed out by traversing to a bolted anchor. From there we top-ropped a very challenging 5.10. We then hit Otter Cliff for some more top-roping to finish up the day.
We ending the trip with a short hike up the Beehive -- a mini version of Precipice Trail. This trail has great exposure, wonderful views, and sometimes requires hikers to hang on to metal rungs and ladders with a 100 foot drop-off alarmingly close by. What fun!
Nightly activities consisted of wonderful dining, followed by a stroll
through the down-town shops. Bar Harbor is a great place to visit -- especially after
the crush of the summer crowds have left.
Hali and I would like to dedicate this page in loving memory of our Aunt Claire.
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