A Quiet but Nice Easter: On the Rail Trail in Augusta

Clif and I had hope to host an Easter brunch for our family, but for various reasons this didn’t happen. Therefore, we were on our own. We had planned to go to the ocean if the weather was warm enough, but, alas, it wasn’t. When the temperature is a brisk 39 degrees in central Maine, there is no telling what it will be like on the beach, where the wind can blow hard and cold. As it is a three-hour round trip to the ocean and back, we just didn’t dare risk it.

Time to move on to Plan C—a walk on the Rail Trail in Augusta, a fifteen-minute drive from where we live. Although the day was brisk, it was sunny. Because of the cold weather we’ve had this winter and spring, the ice still isn’t out on the Kennebec River.

IMG_8122As we walked on the Rail Trail, we met many other walkers who were enjoying this fine, chilly day by the river.  I grew up by the Kennebec, in Waterville, when the river was dark and dirty and used primarily for dumping. In the I960s, nobody would have thought to walk by the river on Easter Day. But the Clean Water Act, passed in 1972, changed all that, and slowly, slowly the Kennebec came back to life. Now there are eagles and ducks and fish. And walkers.

“This just shows how the right kind of regulation can be a very good thing,” I said to Clif as we caught glimmers of the Kennebec on the Rail Trail. He agreed. He, too, is old enough to remember how dirty and polluted rivers were in Maine.

A glimpse of the blue Kennebec
A glimpse of the blue Kennebec

Liam loves walking on the Rail Trail. So many things to sniff and explore.

Liam on the trail
Liam on the trail

It is not a lovely time of year, but there were some visually interesting things to notice.

A bench in need of repair.

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A rusty bridge.

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A purple fence through the trees.

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After our walk, we treated ourselves to ice cream at the Dairy Queen, just down the road from the Rail Trail. As we seldom go out for ice cream, it truly was a treat for us. (We had hoped to go to Fielder’s Choice in Manchester, but they were closed for Easter.)

That night for supper, Clif made pancakes, and I cooked home fries. We might not have been able to host brunch, but we could still enjoy Clif’s delicious pancakes.

Have I ever mentioned that Clif’s pancakes are the best? I think I have.

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