Monday, July 20, 2009

Maine, Part 2: Flora & Fauna

Did you know that the Maine State Parks are a major source of revenue for the state? Boy, that sets them apart from Texas then. Anyway, that's an indication of the tremendous natural beauty of Maine. Let's have a look-see, shall we?

Camden Falls in Camden, ME:

Here's an interesting zoological fact: Two out of three ducks in Maine have no head.

An unusually sized picture, but I wanted to get all the different kinds of waterfowl in here. The one with its wings spread out on the rock is a cormorant. Know the phrase "water off a duck's back"? They don't have that magical power, so they have to dry themselves out in the sun.

Here are some shots of Acadia National Park from our nature boat cruise (way more fun than the puffin trip from three years ago).

Still on the boat tour--an island covered in harbor seals. Turns out only walruses can walk on their tails, so apparently they look like slugs flopping on the rocks when they're out of the water.

Sea birds flocking to the most unusual lighthouse in Maine.

Very hard to see--that bird in the top left corner is a bald eagle. We spotted quite a few!

The boat tour was another good example of how spastic Maine weather can be. Suddenly, the sun's back out and the water is beautiful! Love that color.

A lobster trap buoy. Did you know that lobsters slip the traps 95% of the time? As our guide said, we eat the stupid and/or lazy ones. Natural selection in action.

A natural bridge most likely formed by a waterfall.

Look closely into the open tree up top--that's a bald eagle's nest with several baby eagles in it. Apparently they're getting to the point where they'll learn to fly soon!

I love this seagull. He sat outside the restaurant waiting patiently for someone to come out and feed him. Chris went out to take his picture and inadvertently attracted another seagull, which this big guy ran off.

I'll do Maine towns next!

Maine, Part 1: Maine the Mercurial

By coming to Maine in July, we bypassed an apparently miserable June that featured constant rain and highs in the 50s. Chris said that sounded like his idea of a good time, but the notion of being trapped in a hotel because it's too awful to go out doesn't really appeal to me. Nonetheless, the weather was absolute perfection some of the time and held off the rest of the time. We were also blessed to have a room with a view, so the view of Lincolnville Beach from our rental across the street is a good jumping-off point to show you how wacky the weather could be.

The bay could be beautiful and sunny ...

... or slightly cloudy ...

... or quite cloudy ...

... or kinda scary ...

... or you could've sworn there was a beach there yesterday ...

... but it was never not beautiful.

Need further proof it was beautiful? Chris and I spent an evening walking along the beach after the crowds had departed.

And here's a shot of the Lobster Pound (which has some killer lobster stew--lobster, milk, and nothing more) during a rainstorm at night.

More later!