This past Saturday, we decided it was a good day for a nice hike. It can be difficult sometimes to find a healthy physical and mental balance between the time I spend on photography and the time I spend on writing. There are days when I don’t want to sit in front of the computer screen editing photographs and typing away. I just want to get outdoors and play! There is nothing like a good hike to remedy this and to get your head clear and focused once again. Getting outdoors helps me find my bearings and it becomes a sort of a meditation. This was one of the many reasons we moved to the great state of Maine. The whole state is a playground. An added bonus in partaking in one of these hiking adventures is, of course, the opportunity to take more photographs!
Our go-to place for hiking is the wonderful trail system provided by the generous Maine Huts & Trails organization. Getting there entails driving up Route 27 through Kingfield and ending up in Carrabassett Valley. Driving on Route 27 is quite a scenic adventure within itself. It reminds us of Route 22 from when we lived in New York. We considered this our quick getaway, beginning from the town of Pawling and continuing north. From Route 22, we would usually end up on Route 7 in Connecticut, the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts and on occasion, Vermont. Here in Maine, Route 27 has now become our new Route 22. As an added bonus, everything we like about the area isn’t too far away.
The first place to visit on our agenda was the Carrabassett Coffee Company in Kingfield. We wanted to pick up a couple of pounds of coffee. The only problem of ours seems to be getting out of the house early enough to get to Kingfield before the coffee company closes. This may be due to our new bedtime of 2 in the morning! So much work to do and so little time. The coffee place closes at 12 pm on Saturday, so it was imperative we got going early in the morning. We managed to get ourselves together and out the door by 11. We had plenty of time, because it takes about a half an hour to get there. The store is usually pretty quiet on Saturdays, but not this past Saturday because of the holiday season being in full swing. We are usually greeted by a kind man named Charlie and on occasion, he will take us in the back and show us around where all of the coffee packing magic happens. This time, he was unable to do that because he was helping quite a few people. Maybe, next time, Charlie. After we got our bag of coffee, we decided to take a run into Scentsations.
Scentsations is also located on Route 27 in Kingfield. Scentsations is a gift shop, that specializes in beautiful bath and body products, clothing, accessories and home accents. In the past, we have always been greeted with a warm welcome, which is nice. Like the coffee place, this store was also a little busier than usual. During the colder months, visitors can expect to be greeted by the warmth of a comfy burning gas stove that really adds to the nice country ambience of the store. We visit for the wonderful selection of incense, bar soaps and the occasional cookbook. I really enjoy their selection of soaps and my favorites are the shea butter enriched soaps by PRÉ de PROVENCE. These bars last for quite some time and they don’t dry my sensitive skin out as most soaps do. That sure sounded like a line from a commercial, but it’s so true! I usually gravitate toward the lavender or vanilla scented soaps, but this time I thought I would be a little adventurous and go with spiced rum. It smells like autumn and the scent reminds me a little of the scent of Burt’s Bees Bay Rum Shaving Bar. I believe this Burt’s Bees soap is discontinued, but you can get it on eBay for quite a pretty penny. I have now found an excellent substitute. Now for the hiking!
We knew we would be hiking in the snow, so we made sure to wear our snow hiking boots. The snow ended up not being too deep, which was good. We lucked out with the weather because it ended up being about 35 degrees Fahrenheit and lightly cloudy. Perfect for hiking. The lighting was especially good for taking photographs. We started our hike on Carriage Road and then walked along Poplar Stream in Carrabassett. We then took a new trail and made our way back out to Carriage Road. There were moments during the hike that the lighting made things seem almost hauntingly familiar. I’m not sure I can articulate how incredible the lighting was from that day. It was almost nostalgic, like something from my childhood. This incredible lighting followed us the whole way home as well. This is just what I needed. There is nothing like a good hike to help me get myself in order. I recommend a good hike or even a walk to everyone; it works wonders on the mind, body and soul. The following photographs are from another nice day here in Maine and I hope you enjoy!
Scentsations in Kingfield, Maine.
The front of Scentsations.
Entering the Scentsations store.
The inside of the store.
A Jotul gas stove inside the store.
A display of soaps.
The upstairs of the store.
A variety of incense on display.
Jars of different incense sticks.
A variety of ornaments.
Now for the photographs from our great day of hiking:
Walking up Carriage Road.
Poplar Stream during the winter.
A snow-covered bridge on the trail.
The Maine Hut Trail sign.
Another view of Poplar Stream.
The trail along Poplar Stream.
The sun shining through the trees
Hiking uphill in the snow.
The cut Off Trail sign.
A broken snow trail.
The end of the cut off trail.
Trail bridge covered in snow
The Gauge Road Trailhead.
Leaving the trail.
Almost to the end of the hike.
Poplar Stream in partial light.
Back onto Carriage Road.
One of my favorite houses on Carriage Road.
A snow-covered Carriage Road.
The Carrabassett River filled with ice.
Another view of the Carrabassett River filled with ice and snow.