Blog Entry #3 Tuesday September 2 to Wednesday September 3, 2014 – Ticonderoga to Bar Harbor


It might be hard to believe, but it is 9-3-14 and here we are in Bar Harbor, Maine adjacent to Acadia National Park. We arrived midafternoon after spending last evening in the town of Bethel in western Maine. The prior day, 9-2-14, we traveled from Ticonderoga, NY, through Vermont and New Hampshire to Bethel. That leg was generally uneventful with a good serving of two-lane country driving. It did get a little exciting when our backcountry route took us up and over the 3,600 ft Stark Mountain in the Green Mountains in western Vermont. You would think that after navigating 11,000 ft Wolf Creek Pass on our western trek, a mere 3,600 ft hill would not represent a challenge. Two factors are more important than the gross elevation when determining the severity of a hill traverse; the starting elevation and the rate of change of elevation. Several of the western passes start out at several thousand feet above sea level and owing to the immensity of the mountain ranges; the approaches to the summits are long, but reasonably gradual.

9-1-14 Driving thru the Adirondack Mts

Driving Through the Adirondack Mountains

Route 17 up Stark Mountain, on the other hand, starts out at near sea level and mounts the summit in a very short distance. So, it went something like this; start out in overdrive in 3rd gear at 55mph, then as the grade steepened, straight 3rd gear down to 35mph, then second gear down to 15mph, and yup down to 5mph in first gear for the last ¼ mile. A bit tense since 1st gear is as low as we have and any hiccup in the engine would probably stop forward progress altogether. Oh, and I didn’t mention that the Jeep’s brakes are woefully inadequate when traveling backwards. Anyway, we have had to climb steep hills several times in the past and so far so good.

Blog Entry #2 Monday September 1, 2014 - Ticonderoga
Blog Entry #4 Thursday September 4 to Saturday September 6, 2014 - Adventures in Bar Harbor