Sea Kayaking to the Ovens

Sea Kayaking to the Ovens

Acadia National Park, kayaking in the Mt Desert Narrows to The Ovens.

In the course of reading about things to do while in the Acadia National Park area, I came across an article on The Ovens.

The Ovens are made up of two different kinds of rock with vertical faults creating cave-like “ovens”.

The legend is that during low tide the Native Americans would tie their enemies in the ovens and high tide would finish the job. Charming, right?

Due to private land ownership and steep cliffs, the only way to see The Ovens was by water.

Kayaking 6 to 7 miles with the wind and the tide sounded like a challenge for us newbies.

We could always turn back if it got really rough, I think.

The Ovens
Mount Desert Narrows, Acadia National Park

The most popular route is to  launch from the north side of Mt Desert Narrows in the Lamoine State Beach area.

It’s a 2.6-3.0 mile round trip across open water.

A second option was to launch from Haley’s Point, travel along a shore line for 5-6 miles.

This being our first sea paddle and not knowing what the boat traffic was like, we choose the longer route.

We decided we wanted to be at the Ovens during low tide so we could get out and explore the area.

Paddling against the tide and the wind proved more daunting then I first thought.

It didn’t help that the day we decided to go was misty, foggy and cold. On a positive note, no worries about heat stroke.

There were a couple of dolphins playing in middle of the Narrows. If I pause to watch them, the tide and wind would push me further away from my goal.

To make the low tide there was little time to spare.

We arrived about 15 minutes before low tide. We were able bank our kayaks and walk around the caves.

Mount Desert Narrows
The Ovens, Acadia National Park
Mount Desert Narrows
The Ovens, Acadia National Park

 

The sun had popped out of the grey sky to heat up the stones making it perfect for a quick picnic lunch.

Cathedral Rock was an opening at the base of a large cliff.

In this picture below you can see me standing at the base.

Mount Desert Narrows
Cathedral Rock, The Ovens, Acadia National Park

We had the place to ourselves. It was so peaceful.

Mount Desert Narrows
Cathedral Rock, The Ovens, Acadia National Park

After exploring Cathedral Rock and the shore lines for about an hour, the tide was coming in. It was time we started back.

You must understand that when you paddle against the tide going one way, then the tide changes, you will be paddling against the tide on the return trip.

No free rides.

It’s a good thing the scenery was so beautiful. Without the time crunch, we took our time paddling back to Haley Point.

The gulls, lobster buoys, clear water and blue sky were perfect.

It was an exhausting trip. Later after a hot shower, a glass of wine (or two), and counting the blisters on my hands, I was really happy with our first sea kayaking trip.

Not to mention being able to see one of the hidden treasures of Acadia National Park.

 

Mount Desert Narrows
The Ovens, Acadia National Park

The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears or the sea.” ~ Isak Dinesen

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