Sunday, June 29, 2008

Nine Rocks to One Corner of the World

Met PhatPat (Pat Leonard) right off 495 at the Shell Station precisely 7:30 (doesn’t that sound so official). After the obligatory photo op we headed for Augusta, ME. North Country Harley Davidson was our destination. Pat needs only 3 to complete the tour, I need 4. We slabbed it to Augusta

Off the slabs and onto the back roads for Acadia National Park, but not without stopping for Pink Floyd. Pink is a Tag You Are It Rally that OSJ started to replace his normal season long rally. Pat and I were too late on Pink; someone else has grabbed him and posted up Ben and Jerry’s in Vermont, which is definitely not on the way.

The obligatory entrance photo to Acadia

The are 9 stamps (these are not the rocks) in the Park at 7 different locations. I feel for the IBA NP Tour these should be counted as 7 different places, we shall see if they are in agreement. This is my second visit to Acadia and this place is one of those 1000 places you should see. Hey on page 20 in Patricia Schultz’s book she has this place listed. I am going to have to return here a third time to really see this place, but that’s ok.

Video of Acadia National Park 2:25 Minutes (enjoy) .
Click here to watch "Acadia-National-Park"

After spending 3 or so hours at Acadia we needed to make some tracks for Caribou, ME our next destination. According to Garmin on ETA was 10:30pm. To add some variety to trips sometimes the GPS thinks I am on an adventure bike. This road went from pavement, to choppy pavement (not atypical for Maine) to hard packed dirt got narrower then the hard packed dirt turned to ruts and fist size stones (not the greatest for 2 sport tourers) then narrowed so you couldn’t turn around. After about 7 miles, I just know this road is gonna take us no where and we are gonna have to turn around and do this POS road all over again. I hate when I am right and I hate when I forget to take pictures like in situations like this. Sigh

At this place we decide I95 is a good decision and we head out on the highway. Well of course it raining off and on, the bugs are having a Shindig of some sort, they were dressed to the Nines (nope this isn’t the rocks). In Houlton, ME we pulled into to a gas station to get GAS of all things. I got into a conversation with the woman at the counter and she warned me about the Bullwinkles that also liked to party on the roads we were headed on. We decided to find a place to stay. I would of figured DIRT under our wheels would be over, but Houlton town decided to rip up RT 2A. Wet mud is slippery. !!

We spent the night at the Scottish Inn. Apparently there was one heck of a storm that I slept thru. Well the morning was not bright and not particularly warm. At least it wasn’t snowing. We had a great breakfast here and of course I bought a mug for my diner collection.

=====Here Comes the Sun and 9 Rocks to Boot========

Right down the street on Route 1 is the Maine Visitor Center. We drove around the parking lot looking for the FIRST rock. I wasn’t about to give up and I went into the VC. Well Pluto is so small they moved it inside. The folks in several communities between Houlton and Presque Isle erected a largest scale model of our solar system in the world. Pluto is located exactly 33.2 miles from the Sun. ( )







Earth (3rd rock from the Sun)




You too can have a fulfilling career in Slow Stop Sign Administrator

Now the real purpose of our trip was to visit Plourdes in Caribou, ME for our stamps. With this one I have 2 to go and Pat has ONE !!!. That is going to cost me dessert at dinner some night.

With the major mission completed for this trip we were foot peg fancy and free. Pat wanted to find the beginnings of Route 1. Pat lived in Florida and has the end point in Key West and he wanted the begin point, so up Route 1 it is. We both wanted to visit Madawaska which is one of the corners for the Southern California Motorcycle Association tour. . This ride involves going to each of the furthest corners of the US (sans Alaska) in 21 days. One day I will do this ride. It is about 10,000 miles.

We stopped at this place which was very prominent from the distance on the way Madawaska

Pre Grand Opening of Madawaska Four Corner Monument

Route 1 Begin Point Fort Kent, ME

Pat and I headed down Route 11 for home. It is 1:30pm and miles to home is something like 500 miles. My ETA is 11:45pm. Pat is closer than I am, but not by much. Route 11 is supposedly a scenic route. While it does have some very scenic spots, it is also chock full of frost heaves which just rattles you teeth and brain.

Scenic Rest Stop along Route 11

Around 5:45pm we decide we would stop at the famous A-1 Diner in Gardiner, ME. This place was featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives on the Food Network. I had a Reuben with horseradish sauce. It was GREAT, pricey but GREAT. I call to make sure A> they are open and B> to make sure we can make it there on time. They close at 8:30pm; Garmin says we should arrive at 7:30pm. This pic was taken at 7:26pm.

After diner, we headed out on the highway to slab it home. I arrived home at around 12:30 because Garmin doesn’t know about the repaving of 496 from Westford south which has all shoved into 1 lane. Trip for me was 1,178 STEPENDOUS miles.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A trip I'll remember for a lifetime, Bill. Thanks for sharing the miles and planning the adventure.