It was forecast to be sunny and warm today so I decided to go out to Long Pond and rent a SUP (standup paddle board - its like a surfing/kayaking hybrid). A few weeks ago I'd been looking up kayak rentals and discovered the place on Long Pond that rents SUPs. I decided that I wanted to try SUP and a place that rents them and let's you go off on your own with it was perfect!
I had to drive - no bus service to Long Pond, so I left here a little after 8 and got over there just before 9. As predicted they handed my the board, the pfd, and a paddle and said "see ya in 3 hours!”. Off I went! The paddle board is very light and easy to handle. I watched 2 other people get on theirs to see what to do and then got on mine. I started kneeling which worked great and then slowly I stood up. It was very stable! Much more than I had predicted! Soon I was paddling my way up the pond (really a lake, but that's what Mainers call it!). At first I just planted my feet, but soon I realized I could move around and I wouldn't fall off. And if I did fall off, it wouldn't have been a big deal. There was a very stiff wind on the lake and I was paddling into it, it was hard but seemed easier than the same task in a kayak. When I got as far out as I was going to go I sat down on the board, that was nice - being able to decide to sit, stand or kneel, or even "surf board" with your arms doing the work. The board is so big you can lay down on it. On the way back the wind was pushing me so hard I didn't have to paddle!
I got close to the take out spot well before my time was up so I played around and got more comfortable with maneuvering it and changing positions. I learned that when it's windy dropping to your knees helps. I did slip once, but I landed on the board so it wasn't a big deal. It was nice just sitting and floating dragging my feet in the water!
By the time I turned in my board I was pretty much in love with SUP and couldn't wait to try again! I'm thinking I might use a SUP more than I use the Sea Eagle. Inflatables SUPs are pretty expensive, but it might be worth it, if I use it!
After my rental time was over I had lunch by Long Pond and then drove out to Southwest Harbor. There's not much in the little town but a few miles outside the town is the Bass Head Lighthouse! That the picture everyone sees of Acadia and very few visitors actually see it in person! The parking lot was small and said "no RVs" but I pulled in anyway and was able to park! I decided to pull in nose 1st and back out when I realized there was an empty spot behind where I'd pulled in and if backed straight up I could put the RV in it's own spot between two other cars! I'd never done that before!
The walk to the lighthouse was short but there was another path that's went down on the rocks where you could get a good shot. The best shot involved perching a bit more preciously on the edge of the rocks than I like to go, but there was a safe spot to stand and it wasn't as dangerous as it looked.
After the lighthouse I made a loop around the southwest part of the island and came out right by the lake where I'd been SUPing. Then I decided to take 3 around through Northeast Harbor and back through Bar Harbor. Northeast Harbor has more going on than Southwest, it's a cute little town.
Once back in Bar Harbor I decided to drive up Cadillac Mt - the buses don't go up there so I'd need to drive the RV. The sign said "no RVs" but once again I ignored that, it's not an RV, it's a van! I didn't think I'd be able to park at the top but sure enough there was a spot with 2 empty parking spots next to each other! I managed to get into just one and my bike wasn't even sticking out in the lane behind me! I walked around the summit loop and headed down.
My last stop was the visitor center, I've been here lots on the bus but I never have time to run up and my stamp! I had one from 2009 but it had gotten wet and bled so I wanted another.
I'd been planning to come back and do laundry (put off from yesterday), but I saw that it's probably going to rain tomorrow, so I decided to do something fun in the evening and save laundry for tomorrow (hopefully it does rain!). I took the bus back to the Village Green and headed to Rosalie's Pizza for dinner. They aren't open on Mondays. So I went over to Acadia SUP and chatted with a nice gal there about SUP Yoga and the classes they offer. I also got to see an inflatable SUP in its bag - it's much smaller than the Sea Eagle and only weighs 25 lbs! Next I went out to the sand bar that leads to Bar Island during low tide - since it was currently low tide I walked out a bit then headed back to the Village Green for ice cream at my new favorite spot Mt. Desert Island Ice Cream. Then back to the campground for a late dinner and chores.