Part 23: Gilbertville, MA to Searsport, ME


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The Trip

We left Fred and Jane's place in Gilbertville and headed northeast toward the beach.  We wanted to stay in a MA state park, but they were full.  So, we opted for a standard RV park that was close.  The park was pretty pricey, but it was clean and quiet.  From there, we headed up the beach route into New Hampshire.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

As we crossed over the border into New Hampshire, we spotted what appears to be a nuclear containment vessel at a power plant.

We had lunch at a small cafe and then headed north on the beach route.  The next little city we came to was a mad house.  When we saw things, we were going to park and check it out, but parking was hopeless.  So, we had to satisfy ourselves with what we could see from the cab of the mog.

Kathleen spotted this pair of custom bikes near the boardwalk and was able to catch a photo.

Ah, yes.  School is out.  And given that this crew is not sporting the "freshman 15", I am guessing it is high school that is out for the season.

Aside from school being out and being the week before the 4th of July, there was a sand castle competition, thus the parking congestion.  Look at the detail in these figures.

This must be an Asian tiger; it has suffered a loss of face.

Check this out!  I am not sure what it is, but it is certainly well executed with exquisite detail.

Looking back toward the sand castle competition area, the crowds were easily visible.  But, this beach is mostly a "show and tell" operation as the water is quite cold.  Note the dearth of bodies in the surf.

Further up the beach, the sandy shore turned into rocks and nice beachfront homes.

More shacks on the shore.  For whatever reason, this section of coast was draped in large, expensive homes.  This one has particularly nice stone work.

This home, while very nice, was nowhere near the biggest or nicest we saw.  Since we were driving, and we had no notice of oncoming sights, most of the homes we were not able to photo.  But, trust me, these were some awesome places.

More shacks in the distance.  This small bay had quite a few surfers braving the cold water.  Note that most of them have wet suits.  Of course, the waves are minuscule.

While I was shooting one of the small bays, we had an overflight from a big C5A cargo jet, likely returning from the middle east.  These planes are truly huge.  I have seen them at the Miramar Airshow and they are almost indescribable.

As we traveled along, we passed many marinas with nice boats.  As a yachtsman once told me, "a boat is a hole in the water into which you throw money".  If true, and I don't doubt it a bit, then there were some pretty big holes in this marina.

There were some nice inns along the coast.

We passed this structure and I have no idea what it is other than big and medieval looking.  The crenelated towers put the building over the top for me. 

Just before we passed into Maine, we hit this nice church.

I took a wrong turn and just by happenstance came upon this nicely restored old Ford.  What luck!

Once we crossed over this bridge, we were in Maine.

As we crossed into Maine, we had a great view of some of the infrastructure along the river.  The structure in the foreground is a railroad bridge where the center span raises and lowers.

Other than normal biological functions, there are several things that you MUST do if you end up in Freeport Maine.  One is visit L.L. Bean's flagship store (which we did) and the other is visit the Desert of Maine.  We spent the night at the "desert" and while interesting, it surely cannot compare to any of the Great Basin Deserts, Death Valley, the Mojave or the Gran Desierto del Altar in northern Sonora, Mexico.

It was rather odd to see sand dunes interspersed with dense trees.  Oregon has coastal dunes where pine trees are intermixed with sand.

The sand in the Desert of Maine has cryptogamic formations, just like deserts in the western U.S.  Cryptogamic soil is actually a specialized community of cyanobacteria, mosses and lichens.  Wikipedia has an extensive page on these structures.

You may call this a Ferris Wheel, but I call it the "Barf-O-Tron".

Our route took us past the Bath Iron Works where repairs on several Navy ships were underway.

This road sign made us laugh.

Many ex-military trucks see service as construction vehicles.  This one was being used as a platform for a drilling rig.  We photographed him in the oncoming traffic stream.

We passed the village of Wiscasset and there were a bunch of folks lined up at "Red's Eats".  As we approached, it was clear that the mog is a chick magnet: notice the smiles on the ladies' faces as opposed to the frowns of disbelief on the men's faces.

We passed many scenic coastal villages.

We ended up at an RV park that Kathleen chose in Searsport, ME.  This photo above was shot from our deck that we had as part of our site.  We had a nice, unobstructed view of the bay.

A few days ago, we were shocked to see a pig on a leash.  Today, we got some kind of sheep with horns being led around the RV park.  Check out the rack on the one in the rear.  The young gal had a devil of a time controlling him; he pulled her around with impunity.

Across the bay from our deck a pair of tugs were heading out to sea.

Also visible from our deck was this barge/tug combination.  They stayed anchored there all night.

For some odd reason, I awoke at 0430 and noticed that the sun was about to come over the horizon.  So, I grabbed the camera and attempted to get a photo or two.  The water was smooth as glass, a radical contrast to the wind-whipped white caps of the evening before.

As actual sunrise neared, the colors got more vivid.

Interestingly, after the sun crested the ridge, the colors started to fade.  I tried shooting into the sun, and while my camera can "handle" that, mostly what I got was lens flare.  Those photos did not make it into this page.

The coastal areas of NH were interesting and were very crowded due to the impending holiday and warm weather.  When we reached Searsport, the weather turned.  We got a small amount of rain, but the temperatures dropped about 20 degrees making sleeping in the camper much more tolerable.  In fact, for the first time in months, we actually used our sleeping bag instead of just sheets. When we finished at Searsport, we continued northeast to Bar Harbor, ME.

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