#106 NE Corner-Bucksport, Maine

September 3, 2007
300 miles

NE Corner Trip
Day 4

We start rolling before 8am in a cool 52 degrees, but the sun is making for a nice ride and it will only get better as the day goes. We pull out of downtown Worcester, MA and head northeast on I290 to connect to I495 for a loop around Boston. The loop joins into I95 north of Boston in Amesbury. It was hard to fly past the great little port towns north of Boston, but we want to be in Rockland, Maine in time for lunch...a late lunch that is.

Last year we followed US1 up the coast through Swampscott and Marblehead so we know what we're missing. But we also know that if we ride through there, it will be much longer than just the longer route on the map. I will get distracted and stop to get a better view of what the area has to offer and take photos . So I keep my blinders on and we stick to the Interstates thinking of the bigger prize at the end of the day...Bar Harbor, Maine.

We pull into Rockland, Maine at 2pm and go directly to the Visitor's Center. I'm hoping that Roxanne is in today. I met her when we stopped here last year when passing through the area. She was very helpful and took interest in my mode of traveling around the country. For the past year, she has been keeping up with the Fleeter Log and drops me a line once in awhile to let me know she's traveling along with me via the log. I was hoping to surprise her by stopping by to say hello. The surprise was on me when I was told that she was off today. DARN! But I took control of the surprise factor again when she just happened to call in while I was standing at the counter. The employee handed me the phone so I could say hello. Boy was she surprised to find me fleetering in her neighborhood again.

Rockland is not only home to the Maine Lobster Festival, but also home to The World's Largest Lobster.
Roxanne found time in her afternoon to meet us for a late lunch. She even wrangled her husband, Larry, into joining us. Turns out that they run a motorcycle training school and touring business. They are great people. Check out their site.
Maine Coast Motorcycle

We had a wonderful visit. And to think... if she hadn't called in to the office just when she did, it wouldn't have happened...this time. Don't tell me the Force doesn't help out with the timing! We were so pleased to meet and share stories with Roxanne and Larry, I completely forgot to get their picture before leaving! Darn! Next time...

At Roxanne's suggestion, we stopped this little gem, Angler's Restaurant, in Searsport and they caught up with us there.

...and the Bait's Motel for you Hitchcock fans out there.

What's in a name?
Named after David Sears of Boston who funded much of the town. So I guess nothing to do with Sears and Robuck... Searsport is known as "Home to the Famous Sea Captains" and the "Antique Capital of Maine."

Leaving Searsport and continuing up US1, we come across the new Penobscot Narrows Bridge that just opened May 19, 2007. It crosses over the Penobscot River and is home to the Penobscot Narrows Observatory. This is the tallest public bridge observatory IN THE WORLD at 420 feet. You can see it at the top of the tower on the left in the photo. http://www.maine.gov/doc/parks/parksinfo/observatory/

For only $5 you can ride the elevator to the top and take in the view of the Penobscot River and surrounding mountains, lakes and towns. But we didn't get to go up to see the sights. It was after 5pm when we rode through and the tower had already closed. Next time...

Last year we crossed the old bridge as we eyeballed the newer, higher bridge under construction. Sure does look small and dinky down there now. Almost scary that we actually trusted it to see us safely across to the other side of the Penobscot River.
What's in a name?
The town is named after Col. Jonathan Buck, Bucksport.
So I guess the origin of the name is more like Buck's Port, rather than Buck Sport... Sorry hunters.Bucksport is a typical small Maine town with lots of character and a great view of the new bridge.
Time to get on down the road if we want to make it to Bar Harbor before dark. It's 40 miles to the Mount Desert Island that is home to Bar Barbor and Acadia National Park.
Then we get distracted by a sporting goods store in Ellsworth -- Cadillac Mountain Sports.
There goes any hope of making it to Bar Harbor before dark.
Needless to say, it is well after dark when we pull up to the Wonder View Inn about 9:25pm.
Tomorrow: Cadillac Mountain, the highest point of the eastern seaboard.

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