Today I decided to hike some of the “quiet side” trails in Acadia National Park. I had not really covered any of the trails on the southern side of Long Pond last year and thought I should make up for that this summer.
Yesterday on my day off, I hung out by my Airstream trailer to get some much needed maintenance done on my site – weeding around the trailer, cleaning up inside and out. I also have been nursing a sore right ankle and wanted to ice it and wrap it and generally take it easy to see if I could help it along with the healing process. Confident that I could hike the 7-mile loop up and over Bernard Mountain today with my ankle taped up, I set off on the trail about 8:30am.
I picked up the Long Pond Trail near the pump house on the lower end of the lake and hiked along the shoreline for about 2 miles. It was an easy, level path with great views of the lake. The trail then turns inward and upward towards Great Notch. It was a good day to choose a mostly shaded walk through forested trails! The temperature was rising and the humidity increasing as I climbed.
From Great Notch, the trail ascends steeply for a short distance. At this point, I had to stash my hiking poles in the day pack so I could rock scramble using both hands! After two steep rock climbs, I came to the Bernard Mountain Overlook. Unlike the peaks on the eastern side of the island, the mountains here are more forested and offer fewer distance views. It was a pleasant walk however through the forest, and unlike many of the trails, was less rocky and softly padded with coniferous needles. My sore ankle was thanking me immensely for choosing this particular trek today!! 🙂
The other observation worth noting is that I literally did not pass anyone along the trail for most of the hike. One couple was hiking along the Long Pond Trail as I was setting off and at the end of my 7 mile hike, I passed a couple of bikers walking their bikes along the Cold Brook Trail. Talk about solitude!!