Denise Goldberg's blog

A tale of two
Two Acadias, two wheels, two feet

Monday, January 19, 2009


Musings, in early August of 2008...

Puzzles: Where? What?

If you followed my travels in the spring and summer of 2008, you know that I haven't been planning this trip. Thoughts of a summer trip were wandering around in my mind, but a decision? That was a long time coming.

It was just a week away from my departure date when I finally made up my mind. Yes, I finally know where I'm going, and I think I know what I'm going to be doing.

You do want to hear about my arguments with myself before I spill my plans, don't you?

Possibilities... too many dreams

I'm heading to England next month to do some hiking and to attend a photography seminar in the lake District. That trip involves a long plane ride, so I thought I'd try to stay closer to home for this summer trip. Note that I said try.

My problem wasn't a lack of places to go. It was a combination of my decision to stay (sort of) close to home - in the northeast corner of the United States or spilling over to the bordering provinces in Canada - and of coming up with too many ideas of where to go and what to do. That's a good problem to have, isn't it?

I started with the thought of getting my bike and me to North Station in Boston so I could hop aboard a train to Portland, Maine. I was going to head away from home along the coast for a bit, then I was going to turn to the south and west to head back to my home base. One of these days I'm going to do that trip, but it doesn't feel right for now. I think my problem is that this is an area that I wander in on a somewhat regular basis, so it's not new territory for me. And I think I need something a little different.

Next my eyes turned to Quebec, to Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, a fjord and a lake. I'd thought that I'd ride along the fjord, around the lake, and back again. The area still looks interesting to me, but the more I looked the more I suspected that riding around the lake would mean riding around the lake in the woods. That may or may not be true, but I'm not willing to take that chance. Don't get me wrong - woods can be beautiful - but I'd rather not be surrounded by trees for an entire trip. And it's a really long drive to get to what would be my tour jumping off point. Nope, not now. A visit to Quebec will need to wait for later.

Then I had a really wacky idea. Well, I classify it as wacky only because I'm stuffing this vacation into a week. My idea? I was going to take the train to Portland (accompanied by my bike), then take the ferry from Portland to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. And then? Then I was going to ride around the edges of the Bay of Fundy, following the road through Nova Scotia, across the connecting land to New Brunswick, into Maine, and then all of the way back to home in the northeast corner of Massachusetts. That sounds like a great ride to me - but it would take me longer than a week. Another not now idea. Hmmm... I wonder how long I would need to (comfortably) ride around that beautiful body of water.

Do you see what I mean about too many ideas?

Ah... a decision!

My eyes wandered over maps once again. That's it! New Brunswick! I want to wander along the section of the province tagged with the name Acadian Coastal Drive, from Bathurst east to the Acadian Peninsula, then to the south along the east coast, beaches, water views, and then... I'll head to the west along the Fundy coast. And you know me, I need to stop at Acadia National Park in Maine on my way home. Two Acadias!

My trip has morphed into riding and hiking, day trips as opposed to a pure bike tour. Two activities... I'll be sandwiching some walking - along the beaches on the eastern shore of New Brunswick, at Hopewell Cape, and at Fundy National Park - with some riding - in the area around Bathurst, in the Acadian Peninsula, and in Acadia National Park.

Rolling waves from different bodies of water will fill my vision, from Chaleur Bay separating my home for the first couple of nights in New Brunswick from the Gaspe Peninsula of Quebec, to the Gulf of St. Lawrence, to Northumberland Strait. And then... the Bay of Fundy and on to the Atlantic Ocean. Tell me, who defined the boundaries between water bearing different names that seems to an unknowing eye to just flow together?

Oh, you're right - I'm sure there will be trees surrounding me on my wanders around the province, but there will be water too... Now, if only I could find a way to make the water stay in the bays and oceans and out of the air...

Table of Contents

For now, please use Blogger's list of posts in the sidebar to follow my trip in reverse sequence. I plan to flip this blog on its head so that the posts flow from oldest to newest (like the table of contents in a book), adding a real Table of Contents and a Page by Page sidebar entry, and adding (better) next and previous links at the bottom of each post.

I probably won't be able to make these changes for the next several weeks.

...Denise, January 19, 2009

Monday, September 1, 2008

My camera was very busy

This journal contains a sampling of the photos that jumped into my camera during my trip, but most of the photos live in my photo galleries.

You can view the photos splashed across your whole screen if you'd like - just click the slideshow button in the upper right of the photo gallery window. (If you're in the gallery slideshow, you can get control of your computer back again by moving the mouse and clicking "return to gallery" or by just clicking the Esc key.)

You can enter the galleries at A tale of two to choose from the five photo galleries for this trip. Or you can jump right into a specific gallery:

Monday, August 25, 2008

Signs along the way

The ever-present moose signs first popped up on I-95 in Maine. But those were just occasional signs. Along the Acadian Coastal Drive in New Brunswick these signs were all over. Some of them were more insistent - including warnings to drive slowly at night.

Unfortunately I only saw the signs, no moose wandering.

New Brunswick is apparently the only (officially) bilingual province in Canada. For the most part, the signs were in both French and English - even the common stop sign that usually is recognized based on its color and shape.

Then again, there was an area on the Acadian Peninsula that seemed to forget the English.

You don't speak French? Here's a translation, courtesy of Yahoo! Babel Fish.
Let us be proud and responsible!
Let us keep our own footbridge, collect droppings of our doggies!

Announce the faulty ones to 336-3900.

Tell me, why is the warning about the danger of standing next to a fog horn always situated right next to the noise-maker?

OK, OK, you're right - it is a few steps away. But wouldn't it make more sense to post a warning far enough away that on an iffy day you might not wander close enough to damage your ears?

Even worse - here's the same warning right in front of the foghorn. Not a few paces away, right there!

Now this one just made me laugh!

Somehow I don't think I would have wandered out to the point where this sign lived if it had been really foggy...

OK, OK, I'll stay behind the fence!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Home again

...a driving afternoon

Noon, time to head home...

Denise drove out of the park and off of Mount Desert Island. We had one stop to make in Trenton before we really started that long drive home. Where? We stopped at a farm stand to pick up some of those marvelous tiny and tasty wild blueberries. They have decorated our breakfast for this entire trip since the growing area extends into the Maritime provinces too. Denise bought three quarts of the berries, some for eating now, and some for freezing. It's always nice to pull out a taste of summer in the cold months of the year. Oh, I like them too, and Denise always shares.

We followed route 1A, angling toward Bangor where we picked up quick-moving I-95 for the journey home. Denise usually resets the trip odometer in her car when she fills up with gas, but she thought it would be interesting to see how far we drove during this trip. Of course we found something interesting in the process of watching the miles click by... the trip odometer only holds 3 digits. Denise looked pretty confused one morning - I guess she thought that the car misplaced some of our miles. Then she realized that at 1000 miles it had flipped back to zero. Isn't that silly?

Our total? 1670 miles. Wow - think how many days of biking that would have taken!

Home again, and now it's time for a bit of a rest.

Oh, you want to know what's next? We're heading to England in September to attend a photography seminar because Denise says she still has a lot to learn. We're going a few days early, so we'll be doing some hiking too. Maybe I'll bounce along the path instead of riding with the cameras this time.

I have four more weeks to dream of wandering in the Lake District.

Oh! I like this photo of me. I was bouncing around at the top of Cadillac Mountain, watching the sun sinking slowly, painting the rocks and then the sky. A good trip memory...

I wonder when Denise & I will be wandering back to Acadia National Park again. You do know she's going to go again, don't you? It's only a matter of time.
--- Rover

Photos: A bubble of a view

The Bubbles

...two feet walking

Hi, it's Rover again. I told Denise that it's my turn to write for the day. We spent a half of the day wandering, and the other half driving home - and my words will describe both halves of the day.

Evin made us another wonderful breakfast. Today we had a vegetable frittata, fresh croissants, and a wonderful pear crisp. At first Denise thought the pear was a potato, but then Evin went through the morning's menu. It was a half a pear - still in the skin - that had been baked (just a bit) and topped with crunchy crispy good-tasting stuff. Yum... Denise says she'll be quite happy to go back to her normal fruit and cereal in the mornings, but I know that she really enjoyed her B&B breakfasts.

It was a morning to do something different, a walking kind of day. We headed to The Bubbles, a pair of - well, I guess you would call them hills. South Bubble is 766 feet high, and North Bubble is 872 feet high. South Bubble is decorated with Bubble Rock, a glacial erratic (a boulder, a large rock...). South Bubble was a pretty easy walk. Even the climbing parts were just walks. North Bubble was tilted granite, a harder to see path that was highlighted with the occasional blue marker. I was surprised that Denise didn't turn around at one point; not only was the rock steep, it was tilted strongly to the side. But she kept on walking. Both bubbles looked down on Jordan Pond, water surrounded by very green trees.

The sky was decorated with some interesting looking clouds, so we took a quick drive up Cadillac Mountain for one last look before we headed toward home. And a couple of sea gulls landed right next to our car. I think they were wishing us a good journey.