With 68 Maine lighthouses, if you want to collect, capture, experience them all, some pretty easy to GPS.
Lots are low hanging fruit simple, others require a boat ride quite a ways out into the Atlantic Ocean to get up close and personal. After showing the house dubbed “The Castle”, a Brookton Maine home last Saturday, I was already in Washington County so why not go a little deeper. The quest to explore for more lighthouses in Maine resumes.
Many Maine lighthouses have paved parking lots, are part of state parks with facilities. Sometimes part of a fort. Not just a light to warn of rocks for sea going ships to protect from wrecks or sinkings. Some with fortifications nearby for defense during time of war. Which our history shows we have been in and out of a quite a few skirmishes.
Some Maine lighthouses are little guys, spark plug variety I call them. Lacking the fort, the state park with bathrooms, picnic areas. Missing the walking tours with lots of signage showing the images, historic information at various stations along the path ways around them fanfare. Maine’s Spring Point Ledge Lighthouse is another spark plug, pint size, junior model, runt of the litter example. The light is all there is, without the other fan fare. So is Lubec Channel lighthouse in Maine.
So back to Whitlocks Mill Lighthouse, it is an easier one to catch on digital because she’s right off US Rt 1.
Parked on the river bank of the St Croix 3 miles east of Calais. Not jutted out on a point surrounded by water and rocks like some Maine lighthouses.
Whitlocks Mill lighthouse in Maine is near the St Croix River View Rest Area. Established in 1892, built in 1910, automated in 1969, with a tower that’s 25 feet high. The inside lined in ceramic tile. Three seconds of green alternating light with three more of darkness is the heart beat rhythm, the pulse of this Maine lighthouse. Maine lighthouse preservation is popular and done by some pretty dedicated people. After snapping some images of Whitlocks Mill lighthouse I thought maybe I had enough daylight to get a glimpse of the St Croix River lighthouse.
Found the island the St Croix River Lighthouse was parked on, before destroyed by fire in 1976. Bummer.
And there is nothing like a three for three Maine lighthouse collecting day so next on the list was a trip to Cutler Harbor Maine. One day I was lucky enough to bag four but those are the easier, low hanging fruit drive a little, walk a little Maine lighthouses.
So rolled into Cutler Maine, saw the communication towers, but dusk was approaching. Which can be a magic time on a sunny day to add sparkle, back lighting drama to a shot. But it was foggy, the day before a Maine snow storm and that’s okay too.
Because lighthouse in Maine life was not all sunshine, rosy easy warm weather.
It was sometimes bleak, cold gusty winds, salt air sea damp, a tad dreary. And that comes across with the right weather conditions, season, time of day in a shot. Which is a true reflection of what it was like to actually live at one. Before they one by one became automated. To work, live at a Maine lighthouse year round. Pretty solitary, lonely life but some had farms associated with them. So lots of gardening, stable chores for the critters kept a mind occupied. Plus lamp maintenance, storm repairs were on the job jar to do list as well.
The target, mission for the tail end of the day was to try to capture a glimpse, see if I could get close enough to Little River Lighthouse in Cutler Maine. Remember I said some Maine lighthouses are easy pickings for sightings, image collecting? Struck out on Little River lighthouse. Need to charter a boat ride, or paddle a sea kayak out to accomplish this mission as she is on the seaward side of the island at the mouth of Cutler Harbor. A jogger provided me with the boat charter skipper I can call too. All in all not a bad day of collecting images on my Washington County day visit to Cutler Maine, other places along the way.
Went on down US Rt 1 for some fresh Maine seafood.
Being this close to Machias, Washington County’s seat or Shiretown to sample a platter of Maine clams at Helen’s Restaurant. Saving room for a slab of juicy, warmed up local blueberry pie with some ice cold vanilla ice cream drizzling down over the top. That hit the spot for the ride to get ahead of the snowstorm that was just starting. That made the drive north up US Rt 1 a little more interesting listening to Garrison Keillor on Prairie Home Companion on the way back to Houlton Maine.