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Main Forum => Adventure Anywhere => Topic started by: BuffaloRose on May 05, 2014, 10:48:57 pm

Title: Acadia national park
Post by: BuffaloRose on May 05, 2014, 10:48:57 pm
Just made a reservation for Blackwoods Campground in Acadia NP for October 13-15th.  We will be in our 2350 and are not towing.  Any suggestions or thoughts about greeting around would be appreciated.  Should we rent a car or will we be able to get around in the PC and see the area.  Anyone ever stayed in this campground? Let us know what to expect...Hope we picked a good time.  Probably too crowded because of fall colors, but what about the temps?  We are from SC so it stays very warm here through October. Opinions and suggestions welcome!

Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: gradygal on May 06, 2014, 07:03:43 am
We have reservations at Blackwoods in July. We have never stayed there--we have always stayed at private campgrounds. I figure that it is like most National Park Campgrounds meaning no electricity, water but they do have a dump. $10 a night with the Senior Pass is a bargain. Actually, we may leave Blackwoods and go to Bar Harbor Campground if there is room. Bar Harbor Campground is no reservations but it does have amenities We have been to Acadia a few times but always in the summer when the shuttle buses, sponsored by L. L Bean, are running. I believe that they haved stopped for the season when you will be there. That being said, if you want to cruise around the area, I would sugges that you might want to rent a car.

Cadillac Mountain is beautiful as the sun rises; check out Jordan Pond and the restaurant there. Bar Harbor can be very busy (at least in the summer) but it may not be so busy when you are there. Also, check out the west side--Tremont, Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse, Somesville. In summer, it is the quiet side. There is a good seafood restaurant in Tremont--can't remember the name but Tremont is so small it might be the only one. All I remember that it is a yellow building.


Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: BuffaloRose on May 06, 2014, 08:02:14 am
Thanks Judi.   Do you recall if the roads through the park are conducive to our small PC?  We may take your advice and rent a car for a day. 

Enjoy your trip. It will be here before you know it.  Be sure to past pics and info for all of us!

Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: gradygal on May 06, 2014, 09:08:49 am
There are some tunnels that you might not be able to get through. George says that he saw a C at the top of Cadillac Mountain but I don't remember that. We had a B (Airstream Interstate Sprinter) which we drove to the top.

I would check their website so see. We will be towing our Honda Fit so we will be good.

There a great book called "Photograhers Guide to Acadia National Park" which Santa gave to George in his stocking. I (Santa) got it from Amazon for 1 cent and 3.99 shipping. It was used but you would never know it.

Where else are you going??
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: RKS on May 06, 2014, 02:11:43 pm
Visiting Acadia in October is a great time.  You will miss the crowds, but as that is Columbus day weekend you might experience some significant traffic jams on the way up.  Our weather at that time is totally unpredictable, so come prepared for just about anything, so much to do even foul weather can't spoil it.
What route are you taking through Maine?  If you take the normal Route 1 trip there will be lots to see on the way, some require a little detour but will be worth it.
Freeport is probably the first stop for many if you want to shop and visit LL Bean.  Rockland is the next stop you might want to make with lots of art galleries and a great museum, Camden is just up the road with lots of nice shops, parking can be an issue, however,  Camden Hills State Park is there and a good place to spend the night.  Further up route 1 is Searsport with a another great museum.  Side trips after Searsport would involve going down the various peninsulas to Blue Hill, Castine, Brooklyn, all relatively short trips off the main drag.   I think as previously said the national park bus, Island Explore, stops running on Columbus day which is too bad as it is a great way of getting around.
My rant doesn't even include Acadia.  if I we can provide any other information- please ask.
 Bob and Michele
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: BuffaloRose on May 06, 2014, 03:05:27 pm
We haven't set our route yet, just made our Acadia reservation to ensure a spot.  I will check out the book Judi, maybe there is a kindle edition!  We generally use Microsoft Streets and Trips software to route our trips via my laptop. Then start figuring out what to see and where to stay along the way or near our destination point. I am sure there is much to see and do.  We rarely travel longer than a month since we have a kitty and sweet dog that we leave behind and miss too much.  We may need to plan at least two days or so beyond the three at Acadia.  Maybe a night at Camden Hills State Park, thanks for that Bob & Michelle.  Please chime in if  there are any "not to be missed" sights more than a day or two beyond Acadia. Right now, that is our "destination point" after which we will begin ambling back toward SC.  I want to drive through Shenandoah NPs up or back.  Hubby wants it to be part of a DC trip.  Soooo much to see and do and so little time  :) Glad we are retired!
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: gradygal on May 06, 2014, 04:33:12 pm
We always take 81 to 84 on our way up to New England. We have no intention of going around Washington or through NJ/NY. Plus, being the frugal New Englander that I am, I would rather cross the Hudson at Beacon/Fishkill. Tolls are cheaper than either the TappanZee or George Washington Bridges and it keeps us off 95 (No tolls). We also make Promised Land State Park in PA. That will be our last stop 'til we hit MA and the sister's driveway for a few weeks.

Another nice place to stay in the Wild Duck campground in Scarborough ME. It's an Adult Campground; no kids. Very quiet. We are spending a week there prior to Blackwoods.

Then off to Orr's Island for the month of August. After that NH and Vermont. Planning to be back in FL mid to end Sept.

Any questions, PM us,

Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: Barry-Sue on May 07, 2014, 08:43:00 am
We went to Arcadia NP two years ago and had a great time.  We did have a tow vehicle with us but we also saw folks get arouond without one.  The bridge clearances are as follows:

Bridge clearances:

•Stanley Brook Entrance: 10 feet 4 inches (3.1 m)
•Sieur de Monts: 12 feet 2 inches (3.7 m)
•Fabbri Picnic Area: 11 feet 6 inches (3.5 m)
•Blackwoods Campground: 11 feet 8 inches (3.5 m)
•Wildwood Stables: 13 feet (3.9 m)

If you go to  you can use this map for planning purposes and it does show you all the low bridges so you can plan your route ahead of time. They also have these maps at the Hull Cove visitor center.   The Stanley Brook entrance would be out and all the bridges in the park are marked.

We did see a couple of PCs in Bar Harbor driving around.  A great town.  Enjoy!!!

Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: Bob Mahon on May 07, 2014, 09:23:43 am
Check out Oli's Trolley in Bar Harbor. They run from May through October.
We were very happy with the tours.
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: Jim Triplett on May 07, 2014, 08:04:43 pm
I would suggest renting a car.  Besides the underpasses being to low to go under, there are places you will want to go without the rig.  I got stuck at one underpass and had to unhook and turn around in the middle of the road.  Stupid on my part.

Blackwoods is a nice campground.  Typical National Forest.

Jim and Bev Triplett
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: Bob Mahon on May 07, 2014, 09:11:28 pm
I'd go with the Triplett's suggestion. Too many tight places to use the Cruiser unless you use the L.L. Bean or Oli's Trolley transport. Even then you'll not get to all the neat places.
Also, do the Bar Harbor Whale Watch and Puffin cruises.

Good luck, safe travels and God bless.
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: BuffaloRose on May 07, 2014, 10:41:47 pm
We are thrilled at the great suggestions and are so appreciative of the warm support of the folks on this forum.  So glad we bought our PC. It has given us the opportunity to make new friends!  Thank you for all the information.  We will definitely have a rental.  May even rethink towing since we have that ability.  With the 2350, we are nearly 10 feet shorter.  Glad we asked for advice early in our planning stages.  Gives us time to research and consider a lot of good information.
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: BGolden on May 09, 2014, 07:46:26 am
If you have time try and visit Jonesport Maine.
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: 2 Frazzled on July 12, 2014, 07:31:55 am
We roll into Acadia tomorrow for two weeks of boondocking in the National Park campgrounds (one week in each). There are flush toilets but no showers at camp (pay showers outside the park). We plan to "bathe" at least once or twice a week at Echo Lake if the water is warm enough (swim then wash up in a bucket back at camp). We've backpacked so bucket washing is nothing new. The campgrounds do have a dish washing station so that will help us some on the grey water and we have a solar shower water bag that we plan to use for outdoor washing up at the site. We'll have 4 people for 4 1/2 days and 3 people the rest of the time. Since we are driving from one campground to the next between the weeks, we hope to recharge batteries that way and avoid using the generator and disrupting the solitude of the forest if we can. This is our biggest boondocking test so far. John and I can easily do ten days or more with just the two of us but we'll have two untrained visitors so we have to work with them. We've already scheduled off work since all we've read says NO cell signal at either campground. I also checked the Verizon map and it shows dead zones on that side of the island so our cell phone booster won't help this time. It will be nice to be unplugged. We have our Subaru with us so driving around won't be an issue.

We plan to hit the Whale and Puffin tours, drive to the top of Cadillac Mountain, do the Tidal Pool Ranger program and probably tons more. Will report back after we rejoin the electronic world.
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: BuffaloRose on July 12, 2014, 08:56:11 am
 Can't wait to hear your recap.  Take good notes for us. We will only boondocking three nights when we get there in October! Be safe and have a blast! heartshower
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: NHWanderlust on July 14, 2014, 12:27:32 pm
Dont miss the popovers at the Jordon Pond house.
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: 2 Frazzled on August 02, 2014, 07:40:57 am
Buffalo Rose,
Here is the report on Acadia. I’ll start with – we loved it! We did not want to leave and could easily have spent a month and still not done all we’d like to do. We are the outdoorsy kind so our activities tended toward nature rather than retail but we did wander a good many stores during our time there. After being there, I strongly recommend you have a car as stated by those before me.

Park Pass: You have to have the park pass to travel through Acadia. I recommend calling to see if you can get that at the campground in case you want to go there first. We went to the visitor center to get ours and the line was long. The Federal Senior Pass covers you so you don’t have to pay the $20 weekly pass fee but you will have to hang your pass in your vehicle during your stay. They give you a card holder that hooks on the mirror.

Campsite: Blackwoods Campground check in is at NOON. If you get there ten minutes before that, they’ll have you turn around and leave. You can park along the side of Rte 3 on the way in. They assign the sites, you have no choice (though I did see someone asking to switch sites and it looked like they were going to be allowed to do it.) Our site was a pull through that was sloped a bit so we were never fully level but with the 2350 you should be able to angle to get reasonably level. We have the 2552 and a 12x12 screen house that we fit on the site as well as our Subaru Forester. I recommend you tell them that you don’t mind a back in site. SOME of these looked totally level. The sites are large, shaded and beautiful. You buy firewood along the road on the way in. The park does not sell it. Note that some sites have a pretty decent walk to the rest rooms if there are no empty sites to cut through. If you need to be close to the rest rooms, tell them that when you check in.

Water spigots are near the rest rooms and a few other spots but not all over. It was a distance for us. We used collapsible water jugs and either lugged it around to camp or drove to the spigot, filled up and drove it back. Dishwashing dump station is also outside the rest rooms. There is no place to wash dishes there. You do that at camp then carry the water to dump.

Dump station is convenient. Things to note: There is ONE dump station for a huge campground. We didn’t encounter a line but I’m sure it can happen. It is closed during daily check in times due to the location. Any line at the dump station would block access to the camp loops.

Showers: The town of Otter Creek is just up the road and you’ll drive through it on your way in to camp. There are pay showers there that were never full. It is $2.00 in quarters for 4 minutes and/or 10 gallons of hot water. You can turn the water off and back on so you don’t exceed the 10 gallons, but it will still shut off at 4 minutes. Note that there is a little general store in Otter Creek if you forgot anything or if you want REALLY GOOD blueberry muffins. Proprietor is a very nice man.

Boondocking for three days with no hook ups means you can easily use your rig for all water requirements and dump as needed. We took ours out to dump once during our week there and easily set it back in the mostly level section of our site. We had four people on board so tanks filled faster.

Bar Harbor has RV parking along the edge of a park on Rte 3. It is on the outbound side of the road. It isn’t a lot of space but we never saw it filled. Most parking in Bar Harbor is free 2-Hour parking until 6 pm. There are two free all day parking areas. One on Rte 3 near the RV parking and the other is out a ways along the road that parallels the harbor. There are a few free parking lots a block off the main road through town. We usually parked on Cottage Street and always found a spot.

Activities: Check the park website for Ranger program schedules. A few items to note – the sandbar that you can walk out on to Bar Island in Bar Harbor is exposed two hours on each side of low tide. Thunder Hole is best 2-3 hours before high tide (and more so after a storm). The best tide pooling is on the west side at Ship Harbor and Wonderland. The Wild Gardens of Acadia at the Nature Center are very cool if you like plants or are curious about what plants grow in what areas. Two popovers and a beverage at Jordon Pond House now cost $10.00. They are excellent, but still. If you are over near Seawall early in the day, there is the “Common Good Café” that works on a donation basis. Money earned is used to finance their winter soup kitchen and meals on wheels type of activities. Not the spiff Jordan Pond surroundings but nice view of the ocean, free wifi and good food. They sell (also excellent) hot popovers with jam and several butters as well as oatmeal and coffee and juice between 7 and 11:30 each day. You serve yourself and drop your donation in a box. We ate both places and enjoyed both.

The park visitor center (or campground) gives you the National Park brochure/map and other items as requested. We got the carriage road map and ranger program schedule. However, the most useful item was a free weekly Acadia booklet that they had at Blackwoods and also on a table at the Harbor (indoor hallway in front of the Whale Watch store). They are probably also at the information center in Bar Harbor but we never went in there.

I hope this helps. Let me know if there is something in particular you are interested in. We might have seen it or done it and have info on it. I also have a Guide to the National Parks e-book with some good information that can be loaned out. Send me a personal email with your personal email address and I’ll lend it to you. Amazon lets you keep it a maximum of 14 days then it goes away on your device and I can access it again. You should be able to read it on Amazon’s Cloud Reader even if you don’t have a Kindle.
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: 2 Frazzled on August 02, 2014, 07:48:17 am
Forgot something important - The College of the Atlantic. They are on Rte 3 and house the Dorr Museum (suggested donation for admission, no more than $3/person). It is a small museum but has a touch tank so you can see and hold all the things you couldn't find in the tide pools. They also have mounts/displays of the wildlife in the area. The college has gardens and a gallery that are open to the public but we didn't go into them. The Dive In Theater with Diver Ed leaves from their dock. I highly recommend that trip for anyone with kids along.
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: BuffaloRose on August 03, 2014, 04:15:42 pm
I did send you a personal reply, but wanted to thank you again for the great information.  It is truly appreciated.  What a great group of folks on this forum.... :)
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: SweetWaterSurprise on October 02, 2015, 09:51:53 am
I know this is an old thread, but we are planning a trip next week to Maine leaving from NJ.  Any tips n the best route to take.  I'd obviously prefer to dodge traffic and those pesky low bridges. 
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: RKS on October 02, 2015, 04:36:10 pm
Not knowing where your starting from this may or may not help.  We make the trip from southern points to our home in Maine a number of times per year we avoid I95 like the plaque.  We take I 84 to Newburg NY, pick up I 87 to Mass Pike, when we're in the Phoenix, in the car we will stay on 84 to the Mass Pike.  Driving though southern Conn.  and Hartford, can be miserable, with lots of traffic and numerous lane changes. The Mass Pike route is more expensive with tolls and an extra 100 miles or so but in our estimation well worth it.  From our experience there are also better camping locations with this route, although I am sure there are good spots to be found. If you take the Mass pike all of our GPS' try to exit us in Worcester, which can again put you into heavy traffic. Stay on for another 10 miles or so and exit on I 495 ( try to avoid 495 during the commuting hours) This is where you would end up if you went (and survived taking 95). From this point on its 95, NH and Maine turn pikes.  Here you have a choice of getting off on route 1 in Brunswick or going on and picking up route 3 around Agusta. As we live in the Camden Rockland area so we always get off at one of the Brunswick exits. Route 1 to route 3 in Bucksport which takes you to Ellsworth and follow the signs from there. 
We just got back from Virginia taking the Hartfofd route this week and encounted no problems. We were also at Acadia a few weeks ago.  Sites are nice, although ours required a bit of leveling, as do a number of them. Their saying our foliage is running late by at lesat a week, so not telling just how colorful it will be here. In addition to all the great things in the Park the Canadian Maritimes are a relatively short drive away We always enjoy  Campobello and Roosevelts home, if interested remember a passport is necessary.  Hope this helps, and feel free to ask for more information.
Enjoy your trip
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: SweetWaterSurprise on October 03, 2015, 06:36:50 pm
Thank you, lots of info to take in
Title: Re: Acadia national park
Post by: SweetWaterSurprise on October 21, 2015, 09:47:03 pm
Arcadia was fun, thanks for the help everyone