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Pictures of the Day

Around the Hatchery
May 20, 2013
Bernie was called away on business the end of last week. I was OK being left alone because I figured I would hike in Acadia National Park with Sully every day. It was not to be, thanks to Sequestration, the park was closed. We did take a nice 2 mile walk along the old Shore Path in Bar Harbor instead.










Google Places and Platypie

Fiddleheads, Fish and Vodka

May 16, 2013

We shopped our way from Boston to Maine, stocking up at big box discount stores: 50 pounds of dog food at PetCo, 50 rolls of TP at Costco along with enough charcoal to grill 50 steaks. Oh yeah, and six liters of cheap vodka. (To fully immerse  yourself in the Kirkland Vodka controversy just Google Costco Vodka.) Bernie also bought two ten pound bags of carrots. “Look, honey, only $4 a bag.” After paying, we realized that we would no longer be feeding horses. Carrot cakes anyone? Or maybe fish like carrots?

By the time we pulled in at the Fish Hatchery Offices, we had been boondocking since West Virginia, and the entire living area of the camper was packed to the gunnels with our idea of the staples we would need the next several months while living in the woods.

Of course, the staff wanted to come out and meet the dog. What a fabulous and sophisticated first impression we must have made. Seeing our stock of “essentials,” there was some mumbling about who might drop by after work for a pick-me-up.

I’d like to report that we are really roughing it out here in the Maine woods, but the truth is, we have electricity, water, sewer, hi-speed internet, and HD satellite TV on our campsite. An empty house (for an intern the government may not be funding this year) across our little road has a full laundry. (Joy for that!)

We are, however, alone. Actually, the spring warblers are coming through so that makes for quite a noisy crowd. I can never see them, but I am learning their songs. Chee, chee, tu wee, zzzzzzt... and so forth.

Every day, we will be walking a fairly rugged trail through the woods to get to work. At least it’s mostly downhill, so we won’t be humiliating ourselves by arriving each morning panting and sweating. We feel pumped up just thinking about how healthy we are going to be.

Sully needs to wear a safety vest for the first few weeks as it is turkey season. He’s “game” for it.

The fauna in the woods is quite enticing. Does anybody know a good recipe for fiddleheads?

Finally, we meet some fish. The fry nursery - here the water is heated  to 55° and the fry are fed enriched food to get two years growth in one year. Each tank holds thousands of the little guys and, yes, they call 55° warm.

We tried a moving still photograph of the large brood mares...errr....fish swimming vigorously in their tanks. No answer when we asked if they liked carrots.

A transmitter is being surgically implanted into the belly of this young Atlantic Salmon in order to track its movements.

Scientists from NOAA and their interns are studying the activities of the Atlantic Salmon as part of  an attempt to recover this endangered species.

By June, this little guy will be feeding off the coast of Greenland. You go, girl or guy! Your sex will remain unknown until you return home to your river either full of eggs or "milt."

It sounds like you are going to like raising fish.  I understand that Jon and Ryan may join you.  Have fun.  I will be thinking about you.


Yes, boring isn't it ? Tires are no longer made to last more than six years. The old ones were good until the tread was gone but the industry has managed to fix that :>( I had a five year old loose it's tread in NC a few years ago. Now I check the DOT dates on them to make sure I am getting fresh ones and then plan to replace them in six years. Just another way that big business screws the public :>(


Have to admit that I have never been to the Maine woods, although I have driven along the coast all the way to Canada. I think fiddleheads will turn into ferns. I had a whole bunch in my garden in previous times.

Are "fry" the salmon babies they hope will eventually come back as adults and make it possible for me to make Gravlax? I do like Atlantic salmon.

I realize that the trek in the morning is all downhill, but will you ever make it back?

(PS: The vodka. No comment.)


Thank you so much for sharing your trip with us internet land. I love you stories, I could read them all day long.


This looks like a fun way to spend the summer! I'm a little envious of the cool weather you are having (101 the other day in Burbank).


So glad you made it! Can't wait to google kirkland vodka - I know nothing about this controversy and am now curious. Yes, I think you two will be very popular with all that vodka - of course, you two are popular even without it.


Hi -- I enjoyed the blog post and photos about the fish hatchery, the fiddleheads, etc.

But you said you hike downhill to "work" each day. What work? At the hatchery? I'm intrigued...


Google "asparagus carrot recipe"; you'll get a bunch of good ones! Just substitute fiddleheads for asparagus in all of them. Not kidding.


Love your witty comments and your really clever photos illustrating the blog--thanks!

Keep em coming!


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