A few last pictures before leaving for Quebec.
In the last post I discussed the term Downeast Maine. Well, go as far downeast as you can and you reach the area where the Maine and New Brunswick coasts, along with Campobello Island, meet. This is where you will find Cobscook Bay. Cobscook Bay is an inland bay fed by the tides of Passamaquoddy Bay and the Bay of Fundy. Unlike Passamaquoddy Bay (20-30 foot tide range) and the Bay of Fundy (30-40 foot range) this bay has a more moderate average tide range of 24 feet.
From many of the sites in the state park you can launch a kayak at just about any tide, and even at low tide the bay is navigable except for some of the smaller inlets and channels. That’s why we are here. That, and the large populations of bald eagles, harbor and grey seals, and numerous birds.
The name Cobscook is the Passamaquoddy name for “Boiling Tide”. An apt name when you visit Reversing Falls. A short drive to near Eastport, reportedly the eastermost city in the U.S., and a short walk down a rocky trail, took us to the falls.
The falls are created when the incoming, or outgoing, tide passes over a band of rocks in a channel. The channel is several hundred feet across, with a gap on the far side that creates a series of rapids as the water rushes around the falls. The falls roar for hours as the bay either fills or empties, followed by a short period of eerie quiet at slack tide, then back to roaring in the other direction. Suffice it to say that it is hard to describe, but wonderful to watch, and you should go see it if you ever get the chance.
Reversing Falls are about 3 miles, by kayak, from the campground. We will look into the possibility of kayaking out there later in the week. Being able to launch at just about any tide level, gave us the opportunity for some early morning paddling while the fog was still sitting in the bay.
One of the marvelous things about kayaking on the ocean, or ocean bays, is that the sounds, light, and surface conditions change constantly and every day is a new adventure.
One of the campers at Cobscook, builds rock art sculptures and this sculpture, we dubbed “The Sea Nymph”, was still standing when we left after two weeks.
Each day’s paddle in Cobscook Bay brought new delights. I mean, really, how often does one get to watch eagles fishing.
The bay is relatively unihabited, (it’s mostly State owned land) so there are numerous places to land and explore this beautiful coast.
Just up the road a piece from the State Park there is a rail trail that runs from Dennysville to Machais, about 20 miles. The surface is a bit rough for biking (It is mainly used as a snowmobile corridor), but we figured it would be nice for a short ride. We rode about 10 miles, 20 round trip.
The trail meanders through woods and meadows, with numerous stream crossings and ponds, and some great old bridges.
There’s more to come from our two weeks at Cobscook Bay State Park.
Fields of Lupines bloom in June in the Franconia Notch Region of the Western White Mountain National Forest
The sand, which is better than beach sand for scuplting, comes from a quarry in NH. Each competitor gets 10 tons of sand. Look closely at the pictures and you may see some tiny wires sticking out of the top, those are to discourage birds from landing on the work.
The solo sculptors must work alone. They are allowed three 8 hour days to finish the work and all sculpting must be done by hand. No molds are allowed. A mixture of school glue and water is sprayed on the finished sculptures to protect them from wind erosion.
We visited on the second day of competition and most of the solo sculptures were not completely finished. The Sculptures will remain at the beach until July 6th and will be lighted at night. If we get a chance to revisit before the 6th we will post some pictures of the finished work.
We seem to have a tendency to find little gems in the middle of nowhere. City of Rocks certainly qualifies. We are in southwest New Mexico, a little south of the Gila National Forest, smack dab in the middle of a flat dry desert and here we find the “City of Rocks”.
Established in 1952 this tiny (less than a square mile) state park is a geological gem in the midst of miles of rather barren Chihuahuan desert. Driving the dusty road in from the highway gives no clue as to what awaits here. Only in the last quarter mile do you get a glimpse of the namesake volcanic tuff features that make up the City of Rocks.
The Emory Caldera erupted 35 million years ago in a massive years long eruption believed to be 1000 times great than the 1980 Mt. St. Helens eruption. The ash cloud, several hundred cubic miles of it, traveled over 100 miles from the caldera depositing a thick layer of hot ash and pumice.The great heat and pressure on the layers of ash converted it into a dense rock called tuff. This is quite similar to the process that formed the Chiricahua National Monument that we recently visited. What is different here is that there was no uplift to raise the solidified ash into mountains. As the layers cooled and contracted vertical cracks formed Gradual wind erosion, vegetative pressure and freeze-thaw cycles exposed the long buried tuff.
The myriad features in the park were formed by these erosive forces working in the cracks, breaking away rock and leaving these fantastic forms. It has been a blast wandering, as we do, around this fantastic little park.
The park is home to Cottontails and Jackrabbits, several species of Rattlesnake,coyotes, lizards, and many birds.
We especially appreciate that the designers of the park sited the campground in the middle of the “City” and we are surrounded by the whimsical figures.
In closing I would like to remind you all that one never knows what disasters may hover over our heads, so get out and see some of this great country while you still can.
art therapy in India
Sharing our love of America's Natural Wonders
Sharing our love of America's Natural Wonders