Archive for August 23rd, 2009

August 23, 2009

Best Biking in Bar Harbor: Tips for Managing Labor Day Crowds

The author near Aunty Betty Pond

The author near Aunty Betty Pond

No matter how hard I try, it seems I can never get out of the house as early as I want on vacation.  And what that means in Acadia National Park at the height of the summer season is that the parking lots near the most popular biking spots may be full. 

With the bikes on the racks and the kids all ready to go, you’re stuck with a big…now what? 

Here’s a solution you might want to consider.  

One of the favorite bike routes in Acadia is around Eagle Lake.  The carriage road encircles this beautiful lake for close to six miles, passing by its shoreline and through its surrounding forests.  However, the parking lots at the south shore near Bubble Pond and at the north on Route 233 fill early. 

An alternative is to park at the Hull’s Cove Visitor Center on Route 3.  This is a huge lot that facilitates visitors to its information center.  At the parking lot’s far side is an entrance to the carriage road to Witch Hole Pond.  

You can start your ride here –don’t get discouraged by the very steep, but short hill up to the carriage road.  In 2.9 miles you’ll be at the northern entrance to Eagle Lake.  En route you’ll enjoy views of both Witch Hole Pond and Breakneck Ponds. 

For more mileage, you can detour to Aunt Betty Pond.  This will add a challenging, but fulfilling stretch over Seven Bridges.  You can then connect with the carriage road around Eagle Lake at the southern end of the lake. 

A beautiful place to stop and view the lake is at the northern end. 

You can return as you came along Witch Hole Pond or make another loop near Duck Brook Road to get back to the Visitor Center parking lot. 

Starting at Hull’s Cove gives you lots of alternatives for your bike ride and helps avoid the risk of crowded parking lots. 

For more information on what to do when you visit Acadia National Park, visit OUR ACADIA.  From reviews of Bar Harbor restaurants to tips about rock-climbing and kayaking guides, it will provide you with information and a point-of-view on how to make the most out of your Maine vacation.