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 > Recommendations for a Fall trip to Maine

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NCMike

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Posted: 08/02/22 12:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We are planning to camp at Acadia National Park for 2-3 nights during the first week of October. After that we have 7-10 days to explore the rest of Maine. We prefer National Forest type campgrounds or dispersed camping as often as possible. Every 3-4 nights we like to use a full service type campground (like a state park) to empty the tanks, fill up with water, etc. We will be traveling in our Ram 3500 with a Lance hard-sided camper.

I‘ve been researching White Mountain National Forest already and I‘ve come across Maine Public Lands, which seem to me to be very similar to National Forests.

Does anyone have any recommendations they‘d be willing to share?

We will make reservations for Acadia as soon as the 60-day window opens, but for those that have travelled in Maine in October, do you recommend getting reservations where available? it doesn’t look like you can reserve spots at the Public Lands. Should we expect them to be full and look for mom and pop style campgrounds? We prefer to be as spontaneous as possible.

Our goals for this trip are to see some beautiful Fall colors and as few other people as possible (after Acadia).

Mike

Matt_Colie

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Posted: 08/02/22 02:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Mike,

Be really sure to make plans...

I grew up in that area and a lot of the camp grounds lock up after Labor Day (05 Sept). I know that some stay open just for the Leaf Peepers, but they often shut off the water and close the dump.

Enjoy the excursion.

Matt


Matt & Mary Colie
A sailor, his bride and their black dogs (one dear dog is waiting for us at the bridge) going to see some dry places that have Geocaches in a coach made the year we married.


fwed

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Posted: 08/02/22 05:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Make reservations -- the sooner the better. By early October, we're ready to shut down for the winter. Many CGs here will close by October 15. Acadia is wonderful. Our favorite CG on the island is the Narrows (careful, there are two -- one on the island and one on the mainland). Also, take a look at Schoodic Point which is a part of the National Park. It's a good ways away from Bar Harbor, but from all we've heard it's great. We'll be checking it out on our next trip up there. Be sure to go to the Jordan Pond House in the Park for pop-overs. Try Helen's in Ellsworth for a good, non-fancy, family meal. An absolute must is MoMo's Cheesecake in Ellsworth -- honor system and the best cheesecake around. There's a great auto museum in Southwest Harbor that's worth the trip.

The Farnsworth Museum in Rockland has a huge collection of Wyeth paintings -- 3 generations. The State Prison Store in Rockland always good to find good wooden crafts. Nearby is Doug's Seafood, well worth a visit. Freeport is good for shopping and allows overnight parking in the parking lot for RVs. Lots of outlets plus the home of L. L. Bean. Personally, I'd stay away from Old Orchard Beach and Ogunquit. Both are terribly crowded and uninteresting. Ogunquit, especially, is so crowded I hate to go through there in a four-wheeler, let alone an RV.

Depends on what you like. Maine Maritime Museum in Bath; the Longfellow House in Portland are both great. What do you like? Let us know and I'll try to refine my response.

Enjoy Maine!

fred.

NCMike

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Posted: 08/02/22 07:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thank you Matt and Fred, this is very helpful. I’ll get busy making some reservations this week.

Fred, you hit on a lot of our likes already. We really just enjoy interesting places we haven’t seen before and taking our time to explore. We also enjoy seeing waterfalls and lighthouses and it looks like Maine has plenty of both.

Based on some reading, we were planning to spend at least one night at Schoodic point. I think we’ll be going throughFreeport, Bath and Rockland on Hwy 1 headed north so thanks for those tips. We enjoy maritime museums and there is have a really nice maritime museum in NC in Morehead City, near one of our favorite places to camp, Cape Lookout.

Any suggestions for dispersed camping areas would be appreciated.

Mike

* This post was edited 08/02/22 07:21pm by NCMike *

Crowe

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Posted: 08/03/22 06:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our goals for this trip are to see some beautiful Fall colors and as few other people as possible (after Acadia).

There's no guarantee on either. There are averages but foliage season has a mind of it's own. I'd recommend one of the foliage tracking sites online to get an idea of how the season is progressing. Maine has been ranging from unusually dry to moderate drought, which may have an affect on the colors. To avoid crowds I'd take secondary highways and back roads, look for old barns, fields, swamps and cemeteries (yes, cemeteries!) to find what fall in New England really looks like. The issue you may find with this, as we do, as there isn't always a place to park to take a picture.


I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be Douglas Adams

RV-less for now but our spirits are still on the open road.

TenOC

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Posted: 08/03/22 07:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We will be at Schoodic Wood Campground 9/30 to 10/3 Site B03 then to Fundy NP Headquarts CG at site #01 in NB Canada for 7 more days. Stop by and say hi.

For boondocking on the coast check out McClellan Park Millbridge ME and Henry Point CG City Park. They were our "plan B" if we could not get reservations.

Check out Wildwood CG at White Mountain National Forest VT, they take reservation our overnight stay after visiting Niagara Falls.

* This post was edited 08/03/22 07:49am by TenOC *


Please give me enough troubles, uncertainty, problems, obstacles and STRESS so that I do not become arrogant, proud, and smug in my own abilities, and enough blessings and good times that I realize that someone else is in charge of my life.

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fwed

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Posted: 08/03/22 03:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Some possibilities for you: Penobscot Marine Museum in Searsport is small but good. Maine Maritime Museum in Bath (as mentioned before) is wonderful and just down river from Bath Iron Works which has been building ships there since 1884, currently the best frigates for our Navy. Pemaquid Point in Bristol has a great lighthouse on one of the most trecherous spots in that part of the coast. One of my 11X Great Grandfathers was shipwrecked there in 1635 on the Angel Gabriel. He and one son came to the new world to get things set up before sending for his wife and other children. As a result of the shipwreck, both John and his wife were so traumatized neither would ever set foot on a ship again, and never saw each other. Google "John Bailey Angel Gabriel" for a good discussion.

South of Thomaston is Port Clyde with the Marshall Point Light showing the way to harbor. Well worth a visit. In South Thomaston we stay at the Lobster Buoy Campground, which is (shall we say) rustic, at best, but nice, quiet and right on the ocean. In Kennebunkport you might consider Sandy Pines Campground which is relatively new, great shower arrangements, and glamping. You're better off approaching from the Biddeford side rather than the Kennebunkport side as getting through K'port with a rig would be a task.

Wassamki Springs Camp Grouond in Scarborough might be a good place to explore Portland. I've not camped there (nearly in our back yard), but visited many many (40+) years ago and thought it nice. Portland is well worth a visit.

If I think of anything else of value, I'll post again.

fred.

NCMike

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Posted: 08/04/22 08:34am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks so much!

I am especially grateful for the specific recommendations that have been given to me. I was able to get a campsite at Schoodic Woods this morning, and tomorrow at 10 am when the purchase option opens I am going to try and get a site at Blackwoods for two nights. After that we can begin to fill in the travel before and after Acadia. I think we will have 1-2 nights in coastal Maine before Acadia, so thanks for those recommendations Fred.

Mike

* This post was edited 08/04/22 11:46am by NCMike *

mkc

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Posted: 08/06/22 07:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

fwed wrote:

Make reservations -- the sooner the better. By early October, we're ready to shut down for the winter. Many CGs here will close by October 15.


Actually, almost all campgrounds and parks in Maine are closed as of Columbus/Indigenous Peoples' Day. Many close earlier. The season for Maine campgrounds sharply declines after Labor Day.

The parks we've worked at closed October 1st. Most of the state parks closed after Labor Day weekend. Note that the state parks do not have any utilities at the sites.


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fwed

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Posted: 08/08/22 12:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just back home from Acadia. Went to Schoodic on Saturday. Camp sites appeared to be nice and level with plenty of privacy. Be sure to take your food with you as you probably can't get much more than a bottle of milk at the little shops in Winter Harbor. Heavy fog just off the shore. There could have been an entire fleet a hundred yards out and we wouldn't have seen it. Went to Thunder Hole on Mount Desert yesterday. Brutally hot here, but probably what you'd call a nice warm summer's day. Spent two years in Fayetteville courtesy of the Army -- never been so hot or so cold in all my life. I don't know how I ever got my skinny Yankee butt through Basic Training down there in that heat.

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