Sunday, October 05, 2008

A Jewel of an Island

For the last few weeks we have been talking about doing one last kayak camping trip this year. With the warm weather vanishing, our window was shrinking. At a dinner gathering last weekend, we decided that we would definitely go this weekend.

We decided to return to Winslow Park in Freeport, ME for a launching point. It has a nice ramp, plenty of over night parking, and access to a number of nice camping islands.
When the weekend finally arrived, I was on the fence about actually going. Work has been completely crazy for me lately and I was beginning to feel very overwhelmed with my merciless pile of to-dos. I needed to spend the weekend attempting to catch-up. I needed to spend the weekend decompressing. I didn't want to stop H from enjoying the weekend.....
I decided to go and told myself that I would ignore the shrill little voice keening in my head.
We arrived at the launch before lunch and took our time getting on the water. The weekend was about relaxing...

Once on the water we planned on paddling out to Jewel Island. It is the farthest northern island on the Maine Island Trail and an eight mile paddle from the launch. We planned our route out so that we could bail out and camp on Bangs Island if we wanted.

Fortunately, we committed to paddling out to Jewel Island. The camp sites were great. We found an excellent group site where we ad a fantastic fire. In the morning we took advantage of the pleasant hiking trails to explore the island. Jewel was the site of a WW2 camp and the remains can be seen all over the island. The two best attractions are the fire towers that jut out over the tree line and offer spectacular views of Casco Bay. We also found some neat tunnels to explore, but we couldn't go to far without the flashlights.

After exploring the island we leisurely broke camp and prepared to paddle back to the cars. The return voyage was pleasant.
We had dinner at a lobster shack along the river. The food was fantastic and the deserts were better.

I definitely made the right decision in going. The work pile will isn't going anywhere....

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