Wednesday, June 24
This morning I got up very early to do a photo walk around the little town of Belfast. It was still misty outside, but that seems to be typical for this area. I figured I could still get some good shots of the historic buildings and waterfront area. I had a general goal, but wasn’t sure if i would have the time or energy to get to everything.
My first stop was the village green. This large open area has great views of the entire Belfast Bay. There are a few walking paths and benches, and looks like a great place to just hang out and watch ships pass.
From the green I walked on down to the waterfront. It’s typical of most of the small Maine waterfront towns. There are a fair number of recreational boats, but many more lobster boats. Lobster floats can be seen throughout the bay. I had wondered aloud to Laura, “At what point do lobster floats cease to be scenic?” There were also a couple of restaurants and pubs along the waterfront that we may have to explore further.
Belfast has a unique “Museum in the Streets” program. These are small signs with historical information placed all around the town, usually with a historic photograph of that location. I enjoyed stopping to read these as I walked along.
One of the things I really wanted to do was to cross the footbridge that goes across the main waterway, then return along the much higher US 1 bridge. I wasn’t sure if there was an easy way to do this, but I would explore.
My route to the footbridge took me past an old industrial area. One of the buildings now houses the Belfast Mask Players, and local theatre group. However, most along this stretch appear to be abandoned.
The footbridge itself was once the only way to cross the Passamassawakeag River. It was opened as a single lane traffic bridge in 1921, and dedicated to the memory of those that had died in the Great War. The bridge was refurbished in the 1980’s, and turned into a walking bridge.
The bay was at low tide, so large patches of river bottom were exposed. Most of these were covered with clam shells. There were quite a few seagulls out, but not much else.
The walk up the hill from the footpath to US 1 wasn’t too bad. I reached the highway and turned back toward town. The higher bridge afforded longer views, despite the clouds and fog. I could see large houses up the river, and could look far out into the bay. I took quite a few shots, some of which I hope to turn into tilt-shift images when I get back.
The first street past the bridge is Church Street, which runs one block from our B&B. Along the way I passed other inns that look out over the river. There were also several grand old houses that needed lots of restoration and TLC.
Church Street intersects with Main and High Streets in an unusual five-point junction in the middle of town. The historic town hall, post office, and opera house are on points of this star. As the name implies, along Church Street one can find several large old churches.
Finally I made it back to the Jeweled Turret. I had covered about three miles in my walk, and had taken quite a few shots. I wanted to come back and explore some of these areas when the stores are open. Belfast looks like an interesting place.