The itinerary for the last part of our trip to New England was to drive from Bangor, Maine to Montpelier, Vermont. We just finished seeing the areas of Acadia National Park and Bar Harbor on Mount Desert Island in Maine and decided it was time to move away from the coast as Hurricane Irene was expected to move in within the next 24 hours. The day was growing long with any remaining light fleeting. It was about an hours’ drive to Bangor where we decided to find a place to sleep and weather Irene. Forecasts called for the Hurricane to diminish by morning giving us hope that we could still travel. Before falling asleep the girls were a little nervous and scared of being in a hurricane as this was a new experience for all of us. I assured them that they would be alright because this hurricane was losing strength and we have been in storms with a lot of rain and wind before.
During the night we could hear the rain falling, heavily at times forcing the realization that this was it, Irene was here! I wondered on occasion if we would wake to find a lot of trees blown down or other storm related casualties. Once the morning light began entering our room we turned on the weather and began discussing what to do for the day. Hurricane Irene had been downgraded to a tropical storm with winds gusting to 65 miles per hour and periods of heavy rain. We have driven in these conditions before and what else was there to do if we stayed put? At the very least we wanted to get to a hotel that has a pool for the kids to swim in. Our decision was to head for Vermont. The drive time should be about 6 hours and then we could relax for the rest of the day in the hotel.
After breakfast we packed up and headed out. Driving was as expected with rainy conditions and the occasional compensation for wind gusts. There were occasional downpours which required traffic to slow down but all in all we made it to New Hampshire without any problems. After getting a ways into New Hampshire our first detour was encountered due to a tree which had fallen over power lines and onto the road. This was only a 10-15 minute delay in our overall trip and we were back on our way. This detour was actually quite a nice drive going onto gravel roads by a couple of small waterfalls and swerving for the occasional small tree in the road. It felt like we were going to a cabin on a lake -a very comfortable and serene feeling. Little did we know that this was going to be the easiest detour to take.
To Be Continued…