Denise Goldberg's blog

Acadia captured
A return to the magic

Saturday, January 24, 2009


Pssst... don't tell Denise!

...written on June 3, 2008

I thought I'd start this journal for Denise. I think we'd better keep it a secret for a few days though, so please don't tell her. I want her to be surprised!

Oh! Maybe I'd better introduce myself in case you haven't met me before. I'm Rover. I'm a little red dog, and I've been traveling with Denise since (almost) the beginning of her ride across America back in 2002.

Denise's mind is still wrapped around work, and her out-of-the-office focus is on our trip to Zion National Park later this week. I really can't believe that we're going to Acadia almost right after we get home from Zion. Wow! We're going to be wandering in two favorite parks on opposite sides of the country with only four days separating the wonder.

This trip to Acadia is a last-minute unplanned wander. I thought that we weren't going to make it there this spring - or this year - but a couple of weeks ago Denise decided she needed a longer escape than her already planned short long weekend to Zion. Instead of trying to extend that trip, she decided that some wandering around Mount Desert Island might be in order. Riding Park Loop Road, walking on the rocks along the coast, perhaps a wander to the Schoodic Peninsula, relaxing, rolling down the road on two wheels, walking on two feet... Two feet for Denise, four very red paws for me!

We'll be staying at a bed & breakfast in Bar Harbor - the Holland Inn - using that as our base. I'm sure we'll be riding every day, and I know that Denise's cameras will pull us into interesting places. Do you think the sea gulls will pose for us again?

I think Denise will be happy that I started this journal for our trip. At least I hope she'll be happy... I'm going to be writing the entire Zion journal, but I have a feeling that Denise might want to help with the writing of this one.

Recognize these rocks? Yes, this photo of me is from out last wander in Acadia back in September of 2007. I'm so excited that Denise decided it's time to visit there again!

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 24, 2009

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Word play

Ah, a new toy! I was introduced to Wordle today, a tool that, in the words of its creator, is a toy for generating 'word clouds' from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text. I played with it with my blog, and then I thought it would be interesting to see the word patterns it created from my journal.

Image created by

Curious? Wander over to Wordle and play with your words too!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Camera happy galleries

I was busy playing with words while Denise was busy playing with her cameras. And she was really busy...

There are photos in this journal, but there are more in Denise's photo galleries. And you can view them in the photo galleries splashed across your whole screen if you'd like - just click the slideshow button in the upper right of the photo gallery window.
(Oh, 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 Acadia captured to see five photo galleries for this trip. Or you can jump right into a specific gallery:

And yes, this is still Rover writing! I wonder if Denise will let me jump in and help write her blog entries. I don't think I can wait for our next trip to write again. But oh! That next trip shouldn't be too far away.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Photos: Words from Rover

Oh, what fun! I can dance among the rocks on the edge of Jordan Pond!

Let's see, we had days of gray skies, we had wet stuff, there was (almost) a total lack of blue. This morning was misty, wet, gray. The edges of the island were still obscured by fog as we started our long drive home. The gray persisted as we rolled further inland.

And then... Look! Bright blue!

Seriously, while Denise & I would have loved to have some sunshine during our visit, the gray skies brought their own kind of beauty. And we loved that too.

Photos: A misty Park Loop Road

I thought this sign was a bit odd... We were standing on the hiking trail that leads around Jordan Pond. I suppose the sign might be needed though, since the carriage roads that are so popular with people on knobby-wheeled bikes are not too far from here.

I wonder if many people try to ride on the hiking trails here (which is definitely not allowed).

A wet start, and then...

...a mystery ride!

It had dried out so nicely by the end of the day yesterday that I thought we'd be able to start today with an inside out loop. Oh, you're right - I'd better explain that! Denise was hoping to do a loop that would take us both inside and outside of the park. She was thinking we'd head over to Northeast Harbor, up the eastern edge of Sommes Sound, then back to the east and into the park to ride Park Loop Road once again. That sounded good to me too, but then we woke up and looked outside...

It was a very gray morning, wet pavement - and what is that stuff floating out there? Is it fog? Heavy mist? Rain? It was hard to tell. We could see it, and we could feel it too. Wet.

Instead of starting on two wheels, we packed up and headed into the park in our fossil-fuel powered vehicle. Denise though that we'd wander the loop road once more before we headed towards home, And she figured that we would find better riding conditions somewhere between here and home, and that we'd just stop driving when our bicycle insisted on going for a ride.

Out closer to the edge of the island, a gray curtain dropped over (almost) everything. It was so foggy that there was no one sitting at the bottom of Precipice Trail. That was unfortunate, because we didn't realize until late yesterday that the spotting scope set up at the base of that trail wasn't pointed at people. It was pointed at birds, and oh! now we need to go back to Acadia again (as if there was any question about that). From the hiking trail difficulty sheet on the Acadia web site: "*The Precipice Trail and portions of the East Face, Jordan Cliffs, and Flying Mountain Trails are generally closed from March 15 to August 15 to protect nesting peregrine falcons." Apparently on non-foggy mornings the rangers set up a telescope to share peeks of the baby falcons. We weren't able to visit with the birds on this trip, but we did find a photo of four peregrine chicks on the park's website.

We did a bit of walking along the coast, sheltered by an umbrella. I could have handled a little bit of water, and Denise was decked out in her cycling rain jacket - but she wanted to protect her cameras. Hmmm... I suppose that was a good idea.

We stopped at the last beach before heading up and back into the woods. And oh! the daisies and wild roses were all wearing clear droplets of water. What amazing patterns!

We drove as far as Jordan Pond where we were greeted by a tiny patch of blue above us. The roads were almost dry. It was time to ride! We had a bit of a mystery ride, in the park along the back side of Park Loop Road, and a bit on roads outside of the park too. We stopped to capture some photos of water droplets on webs, of scenery slipping out from under heavy clouds and fog. We even stopped to have some conversations with fellow travelers on two wheels. No, they weren't on bicycles, they were riding Harleys!

I'm so glad that we were able to have a dry ride today. It was pretty cool, with temperatures in the low 50s. But cool and dry makes for good riding conditions. It was a funny clothing day though. I tried to tell Denise that she needed one more layer, but she insisted she was OK. She was wearing a sleeveless long underwear top under a short-sleeved jersey, and biking shorts with knee warmers. I thought a windbreaker would have been helpful, but Denise told me she preferred to be a little chilly when we were whipping downhill. She said if she was wearing a jacket she would have been too hot when we were climbing. Don't you think it would have made more sense to stop and change layers? Oh well, whatever makes her happy works. And I was quite warm riding in the TailRider with the big camera. I could even stick my head out and let my ears fly in the wind. That felt good!

It always seems like our "going home" day comes too soon. I suppose that's a good problem to have, isn't it? It means we're still enjoying our wandering time.

Time to hit the road for that long ride home. Almost five hours. Hmmm..... do you think we should have ridden home? Not this trip! Drive, drive, drive, until we were home again.

And now I need to start bugging Denise about planning our summer trip. She already has a trip planned for September - we're going to England for a photography seminar, and I think we're going to do some hiking too. But we need a biking trip too, don't we? I think that we need a sort of a non-plan for our wandering in late July or early August. I know she was toying around with the idea of a combination Maine and Nova Scotia trip. In fact, she stopped by The Cat office in Bar Harbor to ask some questions. And then there's some far off spot she was looking at in Quebec. Or something closer to home. She was thinking about taking the train from Boston to Portland, wandering over some new roads (for us!) in Maine, and then riding home. Or maybe... Well, I'm sure that wherever we go will be interesting. You're going to watch over our shoulders again, aren't you?

And oh! I like writing these journals. Thank you for joining us!

--- Rover