Last summer, my sisters and I went on a camping and hiking adventure in Acadia National Park, Maine.
We hiked and canoed and looked at lighthouses and went tide-pooling and swam in lakes and roasted fresh clams over a campfire!
It was fabulous. Except this one thing…
So I may have mentioned a time or two that I’m the least experienced hiker of my siblings. I mean, two are accomplished 46ers, one is on her way to being a 46er, and the other is working through the Appalachian Trail.
Heck, if I don’t watch out, my siblings will probably end up turning my kids into more experienced hikers than I am!
But really, what I lack in experience and strength I make up for in enthusiasm and optimism!
Spoiler alert – this is where I ended up on the day in question:
Still smiling 😉
So it doesn’t phase me at all [it really should] when my sister tells me this trail she’s considering taking us on is a little scary. Maybe dangerous. (Definitely dangerous.)
And she’s so diplomatic about it, trying to feel me out and see how brave I’m feeling, when of course I’m already throwing caution to the wind and packing my camera into my bag.
“It’ll be fine!” I say… “I can handle it!”
The funniest part about this whole thing is that Bethany wasn’t worried about me slipping and falling and bruising my sternum as I smashed my whole upper body into a protruding piece of a giant slab of Acadia’s famous pink granite.
Nope. She was actually worried about me being afraid of heights.
Which is arguably still something we’d have to test someday since my actual hike of Precipice Trail was foggy and sans view. (And honestly for the particular day in question, one thing at a time was probably fine. The increasing bruising in my chest was enough without having to worry about psychological fortitude as well.)
The morning we chose to hike Precipice Trail started with a drive up to a foggy, but BEAUTIFUL sunrise from Cadillac Mountain, the highest peak on the Eastern Seaboard.
It was foggy but that was so “classic Maine” that I didn’t mind at all. I think the clouds look like cotton candy in these photos. Once we had our sunrise coffee we packed up and prepared to hike our dangerous adventure trail…
Okay so a lot of this trail looks like this… You are grabbing onto these iron railings that form a ladder or a handhold for the trickier parts of the trail.
(It really is a neat trail, despite my unfortunate experience! You get to feel like you’re climbing without needing any of the technical equipment of a true rock climb.)
The most embarrassing part is that my injury happened at the very beginning of Precipice Trail. Bethany thinks they do this on purpose… if they make the first “move” challenging, they hopefully cause us all to pause and really make sure we’re ready for what’s coming next.
I, however, wasn’t thinking about the morning dew after our sunrise experience. I was just excited and nervous and put my foot (see stick figure diagram) right up there on that second iron rung and OOPS!
Just as I had reached my hand up to the top rung (and thankfully had a good grip!) I put all my weight on the foot that was about to slip right along that wet rung and…
I bruised my sternum.
It was a little embarrassing for sure, but in my defense, I DID finish the hike!
And it really was a cool experience that I recommend. With caution 😉
I was definitely having a hard time breathing and my pain got worse throughout the hike. But we finished it up and I held out for another couple hours before we took our next adventure car ride to check out Mount Dessert Island’s Emergency Department!
This was our blurry selfie we sent Mom after the fact… sorry, Mom!
You don’t really realize it while hiking (climbing) how straight up this relatively short trail is until you get back to your car in the parking lot at the end…
Look at all those tiny little humans balancing on the edge of that cliff!
Anyways I have no regrets. I’m not even annoyed I didn’t have a summit view. Acadia is known for it’s heavy fog.
I also don’t regret the hospital trip and testing because it put both myself and my ICU/Trauma-nurse-sister at ease.
Really the only annoying thing was being with these two goobers because it hurt like the dickens to laugh and… yeah… just TRY not laughing around the two of them!
Like I said, zero regrets.
I still got to enjoy Acadia to the fullest.
And if anything it just gave me a happy excuse to punk out of rock climbing in the Adirondacks the following week. Cause you know, we can’t just do one adventure-cation… not when we can fit two in back to back! #myfamilyiscrazy
SO if you ever find yourself in Acadia National Park and you think you lack the fear of heights that might ruin your attempt at Precipice Trail, by all means GO FOR IT!
Just watch your step 😉
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