Thursday, July 20, 2017

Penobscot and Sargent

Rain was forecast for this morning and sure enough when I woke up, it was raining! Not hard, a gentle light rain.  So I decided it was finally time to do the laundry! The laundry room opened at 8 but by 7:40 I decided to go up there and just wait, but when I got there it was already open! I'm glad I got there when I did because the lady who came in right after me had so much laundry she used all 8 washers! By 10 not only was my laundry done, but the rain had stopped and the sun had come out! 

I packed a lunch and headed to Jordan Pond to hike up Penobscot & Sargent Mountains! The buses were a lot more crowded mid-day, especially going to .Jordan Pond, it was standing room only!  

I'd hiked Penobscot & Sargent when I was here in 2009 and it was a great hike. I remembered thinking it was a really long hike so I was surprised when I calculated the length and realized it was only 5.5 miles! But it was a hard 5.5 miles! The first mile includes a section of straight up rock climbing! The park service has done a great job installing steps and bridges and railings to make it easier, but it's a vertical rock climb.  Once you reach the top however, most of the rest of the hike is a ridgeline hike and it's all open with views all around! The ocean and Cranberry Islands to the south, Pemetic Mountain and Jordan Pond to the east and Somes Sound to the west! It's pretty amazing up there! When I got to the open part the sun was out but quickly the wind kicked up and blew in some clouds and it was cloudy and windy the rest of the hike, not so good for the views, but cooler! After a nice ridge walk I made it to the top of Penobscot Mt, then down into the saddle and up Sargent Mt.  This mountain is a bit higher, 2nd highest in the park, and the clouds were thicker here. Sargent Mountain is more alpine looking with smoother rocks and scrubbier plants.  On Sargent Mt you get great views of Cadillac Mountain, which was also socked in with fog, and Eagle Lake. After Sargent it was time for the dreaded down hill. Getting down from Sargent Mt is just as hard as getting up Penobscot! The downhill is more on a trail, but it's narrow and rocky and steep! Eventually I got all the way down to the Jordan Pond Trail which is totally flat and it was a nice 2 mile stroll back to Jordan Pond House to catch the bus! 

I went directly from the hike to Rosalie's for pizza! Rosalie's is the best pizza in town! I've been wanting to go there since I got here but they aren't open for lunch and they were closed yesterday!  It was a bit early, but they were already starting to get busy! I got a medium veggie pizza and it was delicious! It was also huge, so now I have at least one other meal, maybe 2!   After pizza I hit my new favorite ice cream place, Mt. Desert Island Ice Cream! They hand make all their ice cream 5 gallons at a time, they have some unique flavors, but it's so good! 

Even though it was early I returned to the campground! I've managed to make friends with some of the people who are camped near me, including some other Pleasure Way owners! 

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