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Downeast Vacation Pg 3

On Veterans' Day, we had breakfast at at Helen's Restaurant. Certainly not like at the B&B, but fine & filling nonetheless. Paul had Belgium waffles with blueberry topping and I had 2 eggs over hard and oatmeal. That prepared us well for our hike.

It wasn't a long drive from here to Cutler for a hike on the Bold Coast. If you look at the hiking trail map, we didn't do the full hike, but took the cutoff trail reducing the hike to 5.5 miles. The coastline is dramatic!! Full of craggy cliffs. We took loads of pictures. The hike through the woods was fabulous as we went through many different types of woods, from green moss, to dense conifers, to peat bogs, and open meadows.

While this hike is noted for its birding possibilities, this is not the time of year for birding. We did however see some Harlequin Sea Ducks in the ocean. They were in a calm area, while most of the coast was very rough today. We have previewed our photos and are pleased with the day's efforts. They will require lots of processing as most of them are HDR (High Dynamic Range) that we need to develop in a special program. That will take a lot of time. This 3rd picture, if you look at the map linked above, is taken where we 1st reached the coast. The meadow, barely visible on the far left, is Black Point. This is where we took the cut-off trail back. So this picture captures 1.4 miles of coastline.

We drove through Jonesport tried to find a spot to watch the sunset over water, but no luck. Without the clouds to enhance our pictures it is not a big loss tonight.

For dinner we ended up at Helen's Restaurant again. Paul wanted pasta and they had their own homemade sauce. They were nice enough to provide us a taste before ordering. It had a bit much onion for Paul. So I ended up eating most of the sauce (I called it a sauce & pasta stew), and Paul had most of the pasta. So we were both satisfied with our dinners. We even had a dessert; Paul pumpkin pie and Anne bread pudding.

Our last full day (Friday November 12th) was the best weather we have had all week. The day was crystal clear, and no wind to speak of, and not a cloud in the sky. Breakfast was at Helen's again. Difficult to argue with the convenience of being able to walk from our room to the restaurant. We were up early and out early. First stop was in Lubec along the mud flats. It was low tide and the mud flats were very exposed. Paul noticed what he thought were hawks flying overhead so he pulled off in a pull over. Looking out into the mud flats we noticed a bald eagle perched on an exposed rock head. Out came the binoculars, then the amazement truly set in: the mud flat was loaded with bald eagles. With the binoculars Paul scanned the flat and counted 25 bald eagles! It was truly amazing. The eagles were a ways out. Paul used the zoom lens & tripod, & luckily the bald eagles are barely visible in the picture. I borrowed another pic of a bald eagle to give you a better view.

Then we arrived at the West Quoddy Head State Park. We were the first ones there so we had the Lighthouse photo opportunities to ourselves. Between us we got all the angles covered. This park is beautiful. We hiked all around both sides of the lighthouse, where we could see up across the bay into downtown Lubec, the Campobello bridge, Campobello Island, and also Grand Manan island. (The land in the distance in the picture with the boat is Campobello.) The hikes were through a mossy woods, with peaks out to the ocean. It was all very nice, however not as grand as the Bold Coast hikes yesterday that were magnificently beautiful.

At one spot on the hike people had made a cairn field. We contributed.

We ate a quick lunch looking out at the mud flats that were now covered by the incoming tide. While still a very nice view the bald eagles have all disappeared. It is early afternoon so off the Campobello we head. Canadian customs were very friendly and gave us a map of the island. First stop was FDR's summer cottage. We found it emotional to walk his grounds, stand where he did on his porch and take in the same ocean view. (In the distance is Rockport; we were even able to see the fisherman statue with our binoculars.) Everything was closed, but we were happy to be able to walk the grounds and snap pictures with no other people present.

From here we headed up to the northern point of the Island to the East Quoddy Head Lighthouse. This lighthouse resides on a small island that is reachable during low tide, but we had to stay on the main island and take our pictures from there. I think that we got some nice shots. This is a beautiful lighthouse and disappointing that we were not able to get closer, but we made the best of the situation, just like we did all week. On the way, there is a house with an adorable yard decoration. We also stopped at a working port on the island. There were numerous 'house boats' where the fisherman could work & get out of the weather. One was for sale.

With sunset approaching we headed down a long dirt road to the southern most point on the island. We looked back towards the USA. The Bay of Fundy was to our left with West Quoddy Lighthouse on the shore, the sun was setting over the mud flats that earlier in the day held so many bald eagles, and downtown Lubec was to our right. There were no clouds for the setting sun to accentuate, but we did get some pretty colors. I'll also include a picture of the 'interpretive signs' we encountered in most parks this week. Those are the signs that give information on what you are viewing. Let's just say November isn't a popular month and they tidy up for the winter.

Tonight (Friday) was back to the same Chinese Restaurant from Wednesday night. Their food is really good. In conversation with the waitress she told us that she figured we weren't from the area as we ordered the most healthy meal she has ever taken. We had Chinese vegetable soup and lightly fried Bean Curd with vegetables and a spicy white sauce for Paul and a spicy black bean sauce for me. Yumm.

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November 2010