I was in Maine for 16 days in June, spending two days in Portland before driving the scenic route along the coast to Tremont on Mount Desert Island (MDI). In Tremont, I rented a quiet cottage (Seaside Cottages) on the Atlantic Ocean for two weeks, which served as my home base as I explored the MDI, Acadia National Park on MDI, and other nearby locations such as Deer Isle, Schoodic Peninsula and the Cranberry Isles. Below is an example of a sunset from the shoreline behind the cottage.
As you can see from the above images, Maine is incredibly picturesque with stunning landscape, seascape and mountain views. A friend, who is also a photographer, recently reminded me of a quote I had heard before that is so true and applicable to Maine, “if you want to take great photographs, stand in front of great locations.”
Maine is a photographer’s paradise with 3,478 miles of coastline, which is more than California (3,427 miles). The rugged coastline, thousands of islands, numerous harbors with quaint fishing villages, mountains, dense hardwood and pine forests, lush marshes and wetlands, and unusual wildlife (for someone from Virginia) provide endless photography opportunities. While in Maine, I explored, hiked, boated to islands, witnessed gorgeous sunrises and sunsets, and shot many photographs. Included in this blog article are but a few of those images. I uploaded many more images to my website. This link http://stabone.com/p1023193572 takes you to the gallery I created solely for my Maine landscapes and seascapes. When you visit that gallery, I highly recommend using the slideshow capability by clicking on the Slideshow button in the upper right corner of the gallery.
Since returning to Virginia, I have been concentrating on the landscape images I took in Maine, but I also processed some of the images of Maine’s wildlife (e.g., seals, loons, puffins, razorbills, mergansers) and wildflowers (e.g., Lupines, Oxeye Daisies, Pink Ladyslippers). They will be the subjects of other blog articles. Lupines and other spring wildflowers were still in bloom in late June. Below is an image of some Lupines, which were beautiful, all over, and should be (in my opinion) the Maine State flower, instead of the pinecone, which is not a flower.
Lupines grow in large patches in unused fields, near water and along side roads all across Maine. They are bi-annuals, and the seeds from this year’s plants sprout in the late summer making sturdy plants by fall. Those seedlings bloom the following June. Lupines flower in shades of purple, blue, pink and occasionally white.
I will not bore you with all of the details of where I went and what I did while in Maine, but instead, below are some of the highlights.
- Explored and photographed much of Acadia National Park by hiking, boating, ferrying, and driving, and did it before the park is overwhelmed by other visitors that arrive in July and August. It is one the top ten most visited national parks.
- Drove to and explored nearby Deer Isle and the lobstering village of Stonington, which dates back to the 1700s and produces more lobster than any other location in the country.
- Drove to and explored Schoodic Peninsula where an unspoiled part of Acadia National Park is located. Both Schoodic Peninsula and Deer Isle are the home to many artists and potters. Both locations are very sparsely populated and scattered with very small towns.
- Chartered a boat from Milbridge to Petit Manan, a small island over 10 miles offshore that serves as the breeding home of over 140 pairs of Puffins, other seabirds and a lighthouse built in 1855. Below is one of the Puffin images, a pelagic seabird.
- Photographed several sunrises from Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park, none of which were ideal due to fog or rain, but still beautiful. One of the challenges to photographing sunrises on MDI is that the sun rises at 4:30 AM, which meant getting up at 3:30 AM.
- Photographed, as millions before me, some of Maine’s many lighthouses and/or “head lights,” as they are called in Maine. Although I generally focus my photography on nature, I just had to do it, because they are located in very picturesque locations and make great photography subjects. The same goes for some of Maine’s fishing villages and harbors.
- Early one morning, photographing a couple of MDI locations, that I probably would not have found, with Steve Bart, a professional photographer with a gallery in Bar Harbor. Steve’s website: http://www.katahdinphotogallery.com/
- Enjoying cool, perfect weather with evenings in the 50s and days in the 60s and 70s, while back in Virginia the temperatures soared above 100.
- Eating about more than one man’s share of lobster at many lobster pounds and restaurants. The lobster and other seafood were excellent, thanks to the many restaurant recommendations from the friendly Maine locals.
The list could go on and on, but the above is what immediately comes to mind. I am planning to return in January or February with a couple of other photographers to photograph some of the same sites, but in the winter. As you will see in the images in my Maine Landscape gallery: http://stabone.com/p1023193572, the greens of the trees and other vegetation is bright and fresh with new growth, but that will not be the case in the winter, when hopefully everything will be covered in a light snow. How’s that for wishful thinking?
The below final image was taken at sunrise on a rock covered beach at Mitchell Marsh Preserve at low tide, which was just a short walk from the cottage. The tides fluctuated 10 feet on MDI, making for some interesting shoreline images
Now sit back, go to my Maine Landscape gallery (http://stabone.com/p1023193572), use the Slideshow, and enjoy a little bit of Maine.