Deer, Canadian geese, troves of wild blueberries and hammock relaxation greet us on day three of our canoe trip down the West Branch of the Penobscot River outside of Baxter Park. It's been over 80 hours since we last saw another human being. There are few places in this world that one can still say that. Even with a cabin in the woods, you often see a truck drive by. Complete relaxation and campfire cooking are good for the soul and right now my soul is doing great.
We get a decent start on the day once we feast on a big sausage/egg breakfast after reigniting the coals from last night's fire. Grey early morning clouds clear from the sky revealing what looks to be a beautiful day. After an hour of paddling, we round a bend in the river - which has had low water levels, we've gotten out twice to pull the canoe over rocks - to see a whitetail deer feeding on tall marsh grass. We're really close. He stares our way momentarily and decides to ignore our presence. It's astonishing the comfortableness that wildlife in these parts have with people. We watch him for a few minutes and say our goodbyes.
At noon we reach our next camping spot, posed high on a rocky bluff overlooking a large span of river. We setup camp and wander around the landscape a bit in search of signs of the logging past. We find old tote roads literally filled with blueberry bushes in their peak. We fill a medium-sized bowl in fifteen minutes of plump, juicy berries for morning pancakes. With today's work done (and as it's vacation and never really too early to drink) I grab a bottle of Jack from the cooler, hang a hammock between two sturdy pines and let the view take my mind and run.
With our trip nearly half way over, we still have no idea the turn of events that is to come. For now, tonight, we'll spark a campfire and share stories around the flickering flames and enjoy the silence and solitude that Maine is providing on this canoe trip. Stay tuned and enjoy the photos...