Road Trip 2010: It is one of the 10 most visited U.S. national parks, and a trip there shows why: stunning coastline, rugged mountains, and more.
Panamera high above Acadia National Park
ACADIA NATIONAL PARK, Maine--It is said that during certain parts of the year, if you were to stand atop Cadillac Mountain here, you could be the first person in the United States to see the sun rise.
Cadillac Mountain is the highest point on the Atlantic seaboard, but it is just one of the many highlights at this fascinating national park, adjacent to Bar Harbor, Maine. Founded in 1919 as Lafayette National Park, and renamed in 1929, the park has 47,000 protected acres of stunning shoreline, gorgeous forests, gorgeous lakes and ponds, and hundreds of miles of carriage roads open only to pedestrians, horse-drawn carriages, and bicycles.
Here, though, is the Porsche Panamera 4S that CNET reporter Daniel Terdiman is road-testing as part of Road Trip 2010, and it is parked near the top of Cadillac Mountain, overlooking the park and the water below.
While there are many crystal-clear days at Acadia National Park, it is also frequently covered in fog. During CNET reporter Daniel Terdiman's Road Trip 2010 visit to the park, a thick layer of fog hovered overhead most of the day, only to partially lift toward the end of the afternoon. Still, the top of Cadillac Mountain never came out of the mist.
Throughout the park, there are many stone bridges, some carrying carriage roads, some carrying the park's 27-mile-long loop road for cars. Here, the Porsche Panamera 4S that CNET reporter Daniel Terdiman is road-testing on Road Trip 2010 is parked in front of one of the bridges carrying a horses-, pedestrians-, and bicycles-only carriage path.
Four Eastern Phoebe chicks rest in a nest--only three are visible in this photo--near the Wild Gardens of Acadia, at Acadia National Park. This is the mother's second set of chicks this year, and the birds are no more than two or three weeks old.
This is Jordan Pond Gate Lodge, in Acadia National Park. Completed in 1932, this building, along with the Brown Mountain Gate Lodge near Northeast Harbor--a town close to the park--"ornament the [park's] carriage road system," according to the National Park Service. "The gates serve as symbolic barriers to automobiles, and welcome the traveler into a motor-free system of carriage roads in the heart of" the park.
"The design of the gate lodges was inspired by the rustic architecture found in France near the home of explorer Sieur de Monts, who once held land claims on Mount Desert Island," where Acadia National Park is located. "Like the bridges, and the carriage roads themselves, the gate lodges were designed to blend harmoniously with their surroundings."
One of the best parts of Acadia National Park is that it has an incredibly wide range of environments, from mountains to rugged coastline to forests to lakes and ponds to, as seen here, marshy dunes. These are just adjacent to Sand Beach on the park's southeastern corner.