Here comes the Sun

Here comes the sun

Sunday I woke at 5:30! Something bright was in my eyes. I hadn’t noticed the skylight when I came in last night! I’ll have to remember to close the bedroom door if I don’t want the early morning sun waking me up. I  had some work to wrap up before I’d be truly free to enjoy the week and I wanted to spend some time revisiting what I’d passed on my way here yesterday. I wanted to figure out where I was  and where I’d need to go if I was going to look for moose and other wildlife.  Thankfully they gave me a map when I checked in.

misty mountain morning in Maine

Lets get our bearings, shall we?

By 10 am the clouds had given way and the overcast skies of the morning were a thing of the past. Sun was shining and it was bright and clear. I’d finished my work and felt the tension in my  shoulders melt-away with that task done. Time to grab the camera and explore. I stopped at the overlook to take some pictures of the beautiful lake.

Rangeley Lake in the sun from the Overlook

Now that the sun was behind me I was able to get better exposure.

Return to the Appalachian TrailAppalachia Trail sign

Then it was back to the Appalachian Trail head. When I was younger I wanted to hike the whole trail. I couldn’t afford to take the time off so it never happened. That will be regret for sure. Now with my bum hip it’s definitely out of the question. But I wandered a little way

brook near the Appalachia Traildown the trail and got some pictures of the brook that bubbled nearby. I was surprised that even that little bit gave me a thrill.

The Suds & Sizzle

I found the little laundry where I’d stopped the day before. In the bright daylight it lost some of its charm. This went on my list for an afternoon return for pictures.

Hunter Cove Wildlife Sanctuary

This is high on my to-do list so I wanted to be sure to locate it. Turns out it isn’t too far out on the other side of town. I pulled in briefly to check out the parking and the trails. They look manageable. There’s lots of trees so lots of bugs. Good thing I have extra strength bug spray along.

Afternoon plans get canceled

It was almost lunchtime so I returned to the cabin to make a sandwich and plan the afternoon. Suddenly I was very, very tired. A “power nap” seemed like a great idea. As I don’t usually sleep during the day I didn’t think I needed to set an alarm. Big Mistake! By the time I woke up it was 6:30 pm and the shadows were getting long. I really had no idea I was that tired. But that’s what vacations are for, right? Recharging.

downstairs bedroom with rocking chair


Here Moosey, Moosey, Moose

Here Moosey, Moosey, Moose

Moose warning signMoose are active morning and late afternoon and according to the locals from noon to 2 pm as well. I set my camera ISO to 800, lowered my F stop and reduced my shutter speed to compensate for the low light. With a feeling of expectation I headed out to drive route 17, a so called Moose hot spot.

It should be so easy

The handout about the roads and moose warned that Moose like to use the highway to travel. Moose crossing the roadThey seem to think it’s their own private way. I was surprised that the speed limit most of the way was 50 miles per hour. No wonder this is a “High Hit Area”. Who can stop fast at that speed? I trundled along at about 35-40 miles per hour pulling over to let the locals pass when I saw them barreling down on me. If you come for a visit do not expect the locals to obey the speed limits. They pass on double lines, drive 75-80 in a 50 mph zone and tail gate. Scary stuff.

Trees, woods and overlooks

The drive is a two lane road for the most part. Occasionally it splits to 4 lanes but it also shrinks going over bridges. I saw two beautiful overlooks that I will need to return to for pictures. When I stopped the sun was right in my eyes. When I came back it was just past sunset so I missed that too.

Coos CanyonCoos Canyon waterfall

The trip from Rangeley to Rumford is 36 miles. I didn’t have that much daylight left but I was determined to make the full drive before I turned back. Along the way I spotted a rest area with a picnic table and a chain link fence. Curious I stopped to take a look. A lovely cascade spilled down between high rock walls. The fence was there to keep silly people from getting too close to the edge. Having left my hat in the car I had to beat back the black flies while trying to photograph the gorge.


Mexico Maine

sombrero with mustascheI didn’t get to Rumford. When I reached Mexico, Maine I was two miles away but it was too dark for moose then, at least for my purposes. I thought of my sister as she kept talking about Mexico, Maine while I was planning this visit. Well Sis, found it. Wish you were here.  In the end I made the drive and got nothing for it, not a moose, not a deer, not even a mouse. Tomorrow is another day.

Rangeley Resort, My Home away from Home

Rangeley Resort, My Home away from Home

Well I finally got here. Rangeley Resort, my home away from home for the next 7 days. I must admit that the drive has me second guessing my decision to go to Boston on Thursday for class. But I can’t change plans now because I told my pet sitter I’d be home Friday morning to take care of Rocky. Good thing I like to drive.

sign post, cabin address, home away from home

Roaming, Roaming, Roaming!

I thought cell phones did away with roaming charges years ago? I guess not. T Mobile just sent me a text that I was using up my roaming limits. They are about to shut me off if I don’t upgrade. Guess I can live without cell service if I have to.

My little Cabin in the woods.

I’m impressed by my little home away from home. If I could build my own little place this would be perfect. There’s a lovely front porch with 2 Adirondack chairs. They are much more comfortable as an adult than when I was a kid. There’s also a picnic table for eating outside. The decorative touches are wonderful from moose coat hangers to a vintage rotary phone.

There’s even a Lincoln Log set. Talk about a trip down memory lane!

The First Floor

The first floor is where I live.

Living room, dining table and kitchen

There’s full kitchen with a dining room table. I love the dish rack

I wish I’d thought of that when I did over my kitchen at home. The kitchen dining room and living room are on an open floor plan. The living room has lots of comfy seating, a fireplace and a TV that actually works!Fireplace in living room



The washer & dryer are in a closet in the hall. A full bathroom and two bedrooms round out the first floor.

bedroom on main floor

The upper floorUpstairs bedroom in cabin

The upstairs boasts another bedroom with a TV and a bath and shower. Its so cozy. I could really fall in love with this cabin.  Although the bedroom is under the eves, the room is built so the slanted ceiling isn’t a problem. It kind of reminded me of my bedroom growing up with its slanted ceilings.

Private but not isolated.

Log Cabin at Rangeley Lake ResortMy cabin is set back into a little bit of woods. It’s private but not isolated. There are other cabins nearby.

The Main lodge has a swimming pool, sauna and hot tubs as well as a seating area and fireplace.

There is a separate fitness center located on Dallas Hill. There’s a beautiful view of Rangeley Lake from the parking lot.

If you drive (or walk) down toward the lake, there’s an “old fashioned” swimming hole. How’s that for ambiance?

In search of Rangeley Lake Resort

First Stop Appalachian Trail

Not having much choice I continued on Route 4 looking for someone or someplace  to ask directions to the resort. I blame myself because I didn’t take the time to map out the route first and use OnStar as back-up. I hadn’t gone too far when I saw a sign for the Appalachian Trail.Appalachian Trail sign Pulling into the lot I found a text had come in from my sister. Seeing that reminded me that when on vacation you don’t get lost, you sight see.

My respects to Geraldine Largay

I was still without a cell signal so I checked out my location. On the right side of the road was a trail shelter for hikers. Slowly it dawned on me that this must be the section of the trail where Hiker Geraldine Largay got lost. The search for her and the eventual recovery of her remains were the subject of a couple of episodes of North Woods Law. Her story is very tragic. It especially hit me because she was hiking alone, something I often find myself doing as well.

As I sat thinking about that I remembered one of the things that hindered the search was that there was no cell service. Geraldine couldn’t call for help and the wardens couldn’t “ping” her phone. No sense waiting here then, it’s back on the road..

The Suds and Sizzle

My next stop was at a little laundry and tanning place. The sign said open but no one was around. I must say, it looked far cleaner and well maintained than the laundromats in my area. We could take a lesson. I didn’t linger. I could see the afternoon shadows getting longer.

Dallas Hill

A mile or so after leaving the Suds and Sizzle I spotted an scenic overlook. Up until now there were only glimpses of the lake through the trees. At the overlook was a gorgeous view of Lake Rangeley.rangeley overlook

It reminded me of looking out over Lake George, where I grew up. I also could get a cell signal so immediately called the resort.

Maggie answered and told me to fear not, I was almost there. Continue on the way I was going, I would pass the IGA grocery store and then the Main lodge would be on my left. IGA grocery storeSure enough. It was right there!

I have arrived

Maggie had me checked in in no time. There are so many amenities they will take up another post.

I have a lovely 3 bedroom cabin all my own for the next 7 days.I have a pile of maps and even a list of moose watching locations. This is going to be great!




On the Road to Maine

We gotta get out of this place

I am so ready for my Maine Vacation. Unfortunately life has a way of throwing a curve ball. Sweet Rocky had to go to the vet for another B 12 shot then the only time I could get an oil change for the car was Saturday morning. After that I forgot to run the dishwasher before I left for the auto mechanic so I had to do that when I got back. I turned it on and started loading the car but by the time I finished and I could retrieve Rocky’s clean dishes it was 1 pm. Sometimes I think leaving on a plane is easier than a drive vacation.

 On the road to Maine

Finally on my way I topped off the gas tank and made a stop at the bank. As I left the bank I punched in OnStar. I had no idea where I was going so I was pretty sure using their directions was the best way to go. I didn’t research it ahead of time. As expected, they routed me through Boston. They just love to do that! The traffic was so so. There was a bad accident on the southbound expressway but I was going north so traffic only slowed down so everyone could gawk, then moved on.

OnStar Strikes again

The desk at the resort told me to gas up in Lewiston Maine. I thought that meant I’d be on back roads when I got to Lewiston. But Noooo, not the OnStar way. I was on the highway and watched exit after exit to Lewiston and Rangeley pass by. I even saw one exit marked Bar Harbor. I had no idea Rangeley Lakes was so far north!

Rangeley Lake Maine


Eventually I got the alert to leave the highway. That began a scenic ride through various quaint little towns. I was getting restless now. I was ready to find my home away from home for the next 7 days.

You are arriving at your destination, On Left

Finally I began to see signs for Rangley Lakes region. I was starting to think OnStar had me lost. The navigation system beeped to take a left on Chandler Rd but Chandler Rd was not a through street and besides, it had a big locked gate across it. Alternate directions later I was cruising down Maine’s Route 4.

wooded road

I thought for sure I was getting close but when the Navigation said, in 1/2 mile you will reach your destination, on left. I wasn’t so sure anymore. I was in the middle of nowhere.

Sure enough when it beeped that I had arrived, the only thing on my left was a big dirt bank. I tried calling OnStar again but couldn’t  get a connection. I tried to call the resort but there was no cell service. I was truly on my own.