1 Mount Desert Island has an extraordinary mountainous profile - big peaks, deep valleys, a real fjord, lakes, forests, moss, and many safe harbors.
2 The sunsets can be utterly spectacular on the island which, by the way, is the third largest island off the east coast of the United States, following Long Island, in New York State and Martha's Vineyard, off of Massachusetts.
3 We took a wonderful boat ride in my classic Hinckley Picnic boat, stopping at Thurston's for lobsters and clams with the babies.
4 After dinner we were treated to a clear and brilliant sunset. This is a view over Southwest Harbor.
5 Approaching the eastern side of the island, the more mountainous region, the land starts to rise up.
6 Here one can see the higher peaks - Champlain, Pemetic, Penobscot, and Cadillac.
7 Kerry Asmussen, a family friend, was an early guest for the birthday weekend. He came from Los Angeles, CA.
8 Kerry wrangled with Truman in the stern of the boat.
9 On August 1st, I joined a large group of sailors and conservationists on a trip by boat to Brooklin, Maine for an immersion into the workings of the Maine Coast Heritage Trust (MCHT). Several Hinckleys and other beautiful pleasure craft took us to Brooklin.
10 Richard Rockefeller wore his favorite Maine shirt, with illustrations of Mount Desert. MCHT manages more than 50 preserves along Maine's coast.
11 The trip was terrific - partly foggy, partly clear, we went from Bartlett's Landing on Mount Desert past many islands into Blue Hill Bay and up to Brooklin. MCHT preserves are special places managed to protect ecological diversity, scenic beauty, low impact recreation, and other community benefits.
12 I loved this view of an island with a lone pine tree growing upon it. MCHT's intent is to have these preserves retain their natural character, with little human influence.
13 Brooklin Harbor had some very lovely sailboats anchored in the water. It is a summertime sailing town. In these preserves, where trails exist they tend to be footpaths; campsites are rustic; and human amenities are generally non-existent.
14 I love the varied sailing vessels one sees in the waters of coastal Maine. Working closely with private landowners, partner organizations, and government agencies, MCHT has conserved more than 138,000 acres in Maine, including hundreds of miles of shoreline and more than 300 entire coastal islands.
15 We docked at low tide on this pier and trekked up a ways to a lovely summer cottage owned by the Emory family.
16 My boat, Skylands II, was anchored off shore while I had lunch.
17 The meadows leading up to the residence of the Emory’s is typically Maine.
18 Lunch was delicious - local salmon, Israeli couscous, and sliced local tomatoes with basil and mozzarella - all garnished with edible flower petals.
19 For dessert a local baker had created some wonderful cakes with vivid frosting pictures of the Maine countryside.
20 Another cake with a water view
21 And another
22 As I motored off towards Seal Harbor, a bank of fog suddenly appeared, again.
23 There is a plethora of lobsters this year and they are being trapped in massive numbers closer to the shores of Mount Desert.
24 This is another quiet, uninhabited island - one of the properties gifted to MCHT.
25 A foggy, hazy outline of the mountains of Mount Desert Island. It's very comforting to know that MCHT has protected so much of this gorgeous coastline for all the future generations.
26 Seal Harbor Beach is a very popular spot all day long, and especially at low tide when the beach is very wide and the water a bit warmer for swimming.
27 This day was so lovely - warm, no cold wind, and beautiful skies.
28 On another day, five hearty souls, including me, got up early - 6:30 - to hike the Beehive. This is a view of Sand Beach and Great Head from halfway up a steep and somewhat challenging Beehive trail.
29 Patsy Pollack braved the challenge and was actually a very good climber.
30 David Maupin was impressive as a climber. He had arrived late the night before, but got up early and climbed well.
31 Then, an afternoon boat ride took us to Bunker's Ledge in the mouth of Seal Harbor where we came upon, guess what? Seals! Lots and lots of seals!
32 These seals have beautiful fur coats and are multi-hued.
33 They find warm rocky shores to rest on during low tide.
34 The clouds on this day were most amazing. I really do not recall such skies and cloud formations practically every day in Maine.
35 This is a photo of Hunter's Beach from the boat. We decided to see the seals and then go on a tour of the stately homes on the way east to Bar Harbor.
36 The craggy cliffs of the island are home to bald eagles, ravens, and many other glorious birds.
37 G.K. always loves a boat ride!
38 There was a good view of the Beehive as we rounded a bend towards Sand Beach.