Kennebunkport Fun and Exploring

Today we explored the area on Kennebunkport and Wells. We found a cool place called the Well’s Estuarine Research Reserve. Sadly, the labs were closed but we checked out the cool library with all books on coastal ecology. ¬†We hiked a trail and both start to fuss. Mom said it would be worth it. Apparently she does her research!

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End of the trail. Wait? BEACH?

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B and I were off like rockets to explore the rocks and tide pools.

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I was very careful to keep my shoes dry. I hopped rocks until I got to the center of the big tide pool and was playing with snails, seaweed and some other critters.

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Eventually we gave up and got out feet wet. Don’t worry, Mom cleaned the shoes when we got back and set them out to dry.

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I found lots of these critters swimming about. We are going to look them up. B things they are some sort of baby nudibranch but we are not completely sure. They certainly looked like sea slugs to me.

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We had lobster-pa-looza rounds 2 tonight. I loved helping to crack everything open but didn’t want to eat any of it. After dinner we went for a walk in downtown Kennebunkport and Dock Square. We saw this funny sign.

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We drove by this area earlier and all the boats were in mud. I am starting to see the tides are much different here than back home! Not to mention the sun rises at 4:58am! It sets around 8:10.

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Our final stop for the evening was a buzz down Ocean Ave to catch a glimpse of the Bush compound. It is called Walker Point.

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The Flume, Swimming and LOBSTA

Today we hiked at an area called the Flume. B and I hiked a while with Dad after Mom’s knee had too much. She was sore from the mountain hike yesterday.

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She did hike the Flume and then took the shortcut back.

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This was amazing to see. The crack formed ages ago and then filled in with volcanic material and eventually washed away leaving this giant flume.

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The water was coming off the higher rocks so fast it was creating a giant cloud of mist.

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After Mom departed towards the visitors center we continued on. We crossed a covered bridge.

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Then we found the Wolf’s Den. It was very scary at first but once we climbed through we were eager to go a second time.

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When we got back we had lobster for dinner. I tried it and I still don’t exactly like it. After I had my bite I asked if I could help everyone crack everything open. I really loved that job! Mom said I can eat lobster anytime I want as long as I am willing to be such a big helper!

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After lobster we went to the beach and swam in the 52F water. Well, it wasn’t really swimming. I was a popsicle in 10 seconds flat.

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We came back and took warm showers and called it a night. We will be saying goodbye to New Hampshire in the morning.

 

Cannon Mountain Hiking

We took the tram back up to the top of the mountain and opted to hike down the Kinsman Ridge Trail. The sign said it was 1.7 miles down. Someone told us it should take about 2.5 hours and we laughed thinking they were kind of crazy. Today we were celebrating Mom’s birthday so said what the heck and hiked down. We had ample water and snacks.

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It was perfect weather. The road on the left is the ultimate goal.

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YAY! Happy and smiles at the start of the decent.

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Soon the trail changed and we were following blue blazes down rock scree in the washouts. Some rocks were large and some were gravel size.

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I slipped a few times and got scraped up and didn’t want to hike anymore. But Mom convinced me to keep going that I would enjoy it. I did enjoy it. Soon it was a game but the rocks kept trying to beat me.

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As we got lower the rocks were wet. We found patches of ice between rocks! The ice was melting making the rocks slippery.

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Mommy being silly. Sadly, she fell right after this photo and did a butt slide down a rock.

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The trees on the side became our friends as we navigated slippery slopes and water.

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This is Echo Lake. We are staying to the paved lot of the far side of the lake on the left. This is about 1/2 of the way down the mountain.

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Another rock attacked me. This time I thought I was done for real! I had blood all over. Mom said it wasn’t much and put medicine on the bloodiest spots with some bandages.

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We made it down with no further injuries. No one was immune for the slipping and sliding. Even Dad slid of the pea gravel rocks and wet stones. Sometimes you just had to sit on your butt and slide!

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Cannon Mountain is about 3250′ high! It was a super fun hike. At least I will say that now that it is over. During the hike, not so much!

 

Mt. Washington Auto Road and Observatory

We started the morning with a bumpy back road to Mt. Washington Auto Road. The Auto Road just opened this week for the season. We were int he front of the line when the road opened for the day. One guy went whipping around us on the way up. It was also Alton Weagle Day and people were making attempts to hike the mountain in funny ways. One man and his dog were dressed at the Grinch and Max. Another guy was wearing a hotdog costume. A larger group were wearing animal costumes. It was just weird!

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As we went up the view got hazier and then we were soon in the clouds above tree line.

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When we finally reached the top it was all cold chilly clouds.

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The wind was blowing really hard (turns out it was only 20 mph and the highest ever wind was 231!).

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We had an early morning observatory tour and learned about how they track the weather in such an extreme place.

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We saw some cool instruments for measuring aspects of weather.

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We got to go out on the observation deck and look up at the equipment they use. This tower is where the webcam is located. So if you go online you can see the views from the safety of your home.

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We got to climb up a twisty staircase so see higher up.

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Then they let us climb to the tipped top where the instruments were mounted. In some wether the red bars and instruments get ice all over them and they have to whack it with a hammer to get it off. The weather wind monitor is actually heated so ice doesn’t form as often.

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The stairs up and down were super fun!

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The weather cleared a little right as the COG railway was coming up.

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We checked out the cogs and how they worked.

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We even saw a reconstructed building. The original blew away in strong winds so now this one is chained to the mountain!

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Down down down we go. You have to make sure you down burn out your breaks with the 7 miles down. There are lots of places to stop and cool breaks or add water to radiators!

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At the bottom there was a little museum with some of the first coaches that horses pulled up the mountain.

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Franconia Notch State Park in New Hampshire

We arrived at Franconia Notch State Park around lunch. We quickly set up the campsite and headed out to explore the area. We found a nice viewing area on an old bridge. You could see for miles!

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Then we headed to Cannon Mountain to the Tramway and took it up and down the mountain. They said at capacity they are taking 80 people up at a time! This is the first passenger ski lift in the world. Well, the cars and cables were replaced in the 1980s but it was this location.

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The ride up was a lot of fun. The wind was really blowing and the window was open. We loved sticking our heads out and looking for bears. Apparently there are black bears in the slopes sometimes that like to eat dandelions.

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We were shocked to see snow on the ground still.

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At the top we hiked the Rim trail and climbed up the observation tower.

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The view at the tippy top was amazing!

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B and I were fighting all day and drove Mom and Dad bonkers! We finally allowed one nice picture but them B was testing me again.

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The campground had a cool hill behind the site and we had a good time running up and down and playing adventure games.

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There are only 7 campsites off a larger parking lot. The staff as super nice. If you are ever in the area look into staying at Cannon Mountain RV Park at Franconia Notch State Park.

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We had a nice campfire in the cool wind and called it a night.

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