Climbing the Ladder

Trip Start Aug 20, 2010
Trip End Sep 07, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Maine
Thursday, September 2, 2010

Epic Road Trip Day 14 – 9/2/2010

Miles Driven: negligible
Miles Hiked: 3.3
Stone Steps Ascended: 2751
Metal Rung Ladders Scaled: 2
Mountains Summitted: 1

After a fantastic night's sleep we climbed out of the tent and did not immediately start preparations to dismantle it. Joy of joys, we are camping in the same spot two nights in a row!  So instead of packing, we ate breakfast and headed out to climb a mountain.

Again, the forecast expected temperatures to reach at least 90 degrees (and, yep, it did), so we planned our hiking for the morning.  Even with this precaution, we were drenched in sweat within a quarter of a mile.  Of course, it didn’t help that the first half of a mile was straight up hill.  The aptly named Ladder Trail consisted of stone steps and iron rung ladders.  There were 30 feet of flat terrain, if we were lucky.  It was a strenuous trail, but the views from the exposed cliffs were beautiful. 

With the Ladder Trail finally behind us, we continued along Schiff Path.  While we were no longer climbing stairs and ladders, we were still going up in a hurry.  This time we were scrambling up bald rock faces with few trees to give us shade.  Although it was a lot of work, the trail was worth the effort.  Every few steps opened a new vista, and we took the time to enjoy our surroundings.

The top of Dorr Mountain (elevation 1270 feet) gave us a sweeping view of Bar Harbor, the many islands just off shore, and Cadillac Mountain.  (Cadillac is 260 feet taller than Dorr and the tallest mountain on the island.)   After soaking in the scenery and glorious breeze atop Dorr, we began our descent via the Dorr South Ridge Trail.  The exhaustion of climbing gave way to the knee jarring trek downward.  The hike finished with an easy stroll along Canon Brook Trail and Kane Path.  Monty was dutifully waiting for us at the end of the trail.

We cranked the air conditioning on the way back to camp.  Then relaxed a few minutes before making lunch and playing Cribbage (one monster hand gave Aaron the win).  Food was followed by several hours of nothingness.  It was wonderful!  A vacation from our vacation :)

We finally grew bored of resting and headed off to find a shower. Clean again, we moseyed into Bar Harbor to find dinner and locate where our ice cream would come from later in the day.  It was only 5pm after we ate, so we strolled along the Shore Trail and then decided to drive to the western side of the island for the sunset.  It was a pleasant way to spend the evening.

We stopped to play mini golf on the way back to Bar Harbor (we tied) and ate some splendiferous ice cream for dessert. It wasn’t quite Cow’s, but we may have been spoiled by that wonderful delicacy from Prince Edward Island.

The trip isn’t over yet, but it is feeling that way. The next few days will be filled with driving as we make our way to Pittsburgh for a Pirate’s game, and then to Detroit on Labor Day.
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