On the second day I drove an hour up to Acadia National Park, surely one of the most splendid on the East Coast. I'd decided to make this a day of relaxation, only choosing rambles that my guidebook rated as Easy or Moderate. This is Cadillac Mountain. You can drive to the top.


The view in the other direction. I walked a long way across these drifts of granite.


The guidebook had a single trail that was rated oddly. It said: Ladders. This sounded more than strenuous to me. But as I drove by the parking area, I could see people up on this rock cliff. I pulled in to look. Aw heck, it didn't look that hard. I grabbed my camera and started up the trail, taking brief notice of the large yellow CAUTION sign at the base warning of sheer drops, prior deaths, and the handiness (but not absolutely required) of mountaineering experience. Didn't take long to find out why.

This was part of the path, going straight up through this huge rock jumble.


I began to see why it was called the Precipice Trail.


Some parts were kinda scarey. I'm not particularly afraid of heights, but I didn't do too much looking downward. Which side of this rock would you climb?


The view from about halfway up.


By this time I was sweat-soaked, thirsty (no water bottle), had no idea if there was an easier trail going back down (no map), and the knees were shouting mutinous curses. And the top of the trail was still wayyyy up there. Knowing when I'd been bested, I turned around and went back down. Turns out it'd have been easier to keep going and then take another gentler trail back down. But I made it just fine. Some relaxing day...

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