A couple of weeks ago, some of our closests friends/mentors/heroes came up to visit us in New England, and embark on a kayak trip in the Deer Isles area of Maine. Clyde Carter was my professor at Brevard College and I have been close to him and his wife for almost 9 (!) years. While we were doing our “other” kayak trip ( www.dbkayak.comÂ ) Wendy was a constant voice or encouragement to me the.entire.way. which was a long long time. To say how much they mean to us is honestly not possible other than just to say we love them, dearly.
We started by heading up to Stonington, ME and parking our car at the Old Quarry Campground. From there we launched and paddled to Little Sheep Island. Our original plan was to head to Sheep Island, but all the sites were already taken so we changed course and went to Little Sheep. This turned out to be a blessing since I personally LOVED Little Sheep. It was barren and had only a small area for camping but the views were lovely and it was a superb place to begin our trip.
The next day it POURED down rain but only after we were packed up and in our boats. That is my kind of rain for sure. Who cares if it’s raining it you are in a kayak and wearing your rain gear, and all your belongings are safe in dry bags in your kayak hatches? We battled the rain being blown into our faces and a small headwind all the way to Wheat Island, where we had our lunch of tuna salad and gouda on bagels, and coffee. (Dan and I caved from our caffeine fast once we got cold and were on a deserted island. Who can blame us?) After lunch we explored Burnt Island before heading to Kimball Island, directly across the waterway from Isle au Haut. We set up camp while Wendy and Clyde paddled over to the general store and bought guacamole supplies and two cold beers to split. We dined over our chart and made plans for the next day.
Rise and shine, and again (!) the rain didn’t show up until we were done packing. I love how cooperative it was almost the whole trip. We made a pit stop just across the water on Isle Au Haut and went to the Maine Lobster Lady‘s trailer. She was not ready for serving since it was 9:30am but she made an exception for two ladies in cold wet neoprene on a foggy morning. They were… unbelievable. Stop what you are doing and go there. Now. We brought them back to the guys for breakfast and I think we stole their hearts all over again. After that, we paddled to the GEM that is Harbor Island. We all fell immediately in love with this one. There was a Narnia-esque forest with white moss and magical mist. There were two campsites. We all choose the two tent site in the wind with the phenomenal view. We sat and ate some lunch and two guys, Jeremy and Joe came out of the woods and restored our faith in first-time kayakers forever more. I love meeting people in places like this. It’s as if you are all there with the same mindset so you can already assume the other is awesome. Jeremy and Joe told me that they don’t have any photos of themselves together so we HAD to remedy that one! Call us up guys!! We want to remedy that in a big way. Dan, Wendy and Clyde went for another little paddle while I went to the tent and read Harry Potter. Around 3:00 the rain started, and I kid you not, it rained until the next morning. We spent 10 hours in the tents in an INSANE rain and windstorm. I texted Wendy but due to no signal it didn’t get there until we got back to civilization later on the next day. Camping joys.
We woke up the next morning VERY well rested and the rain had passed. There was a perfect amount of fog so that Clyde and Wendy could get a taste of the Maine fog goodness, and then it burnt off just in time to paddle back to our car. This was the first day of the trip that the sun was out and we didn’t need to layer up entirely in Neoprene to keep from freezing. #bestever
After we got to the car, we piled in and headed even MORE north to Bar Harbor and Acadia. Clyde and Dan went paddling in a tidal race while we looked on from the shore. I met a really nice veteran from Delaware and had a new friend while Wendy caught up with her children and sweet little grandkids. Â We enjoyed one more night of camping, after pizza from our secret spot, and sunrise on Cadillac Mountain. It was the perfect finale to our trip in Maine. On the way home we headed to Portland for even more Lobster, obviously.
The following day, Wendy and I got pedicures while Clyde went paddling yet again. What do you expect from a professor of Wilderness Leadership and Experiential Education?
So when is the next trip guys???
* We knew where we could camp legally thanks to the Maine Island Trail Association. Look it up! It is SUCH an amazing resource and steward for paddling in Maine.
**Disclaimer: None of these photos are edited other than a few on the phone. Most are taken from either my or Wendy’s iPhones with LifeProofÂ cases. (so awesome) Also… that means we didnt take all of these either. Wendy and Clyde also brought thier waterproof point and shoot camera so basically this a smorgasbord of non-dslr, non-edited, snapshots from our trip. ie: Judgement-free zone ok?