August is wild blueberry season in Maine. This year, a stretch of great weather has bumped the blueberry season up a bit and the berries are in now. So Hannah and I took advantage of a quintessential summer afternoon and went in search of berries. We drove over to Petit Manan Wildlife Refuge which is about eight miles away. There is a section of blueberry barrens where the public is invited to pick berries by hand rather than with a rake as the blueberry harvesters do.
Picking wild low-bush blueberries is back breaking work. Hannah and I picked for an hour (well, I picked for an hour – Hannah enjoyed a bit of shade for a while) and ended up with about a quart of tiny, tasty, wild blueberries. We make this outing at least once a year and we’ve pledge to make another trip out soon. When you’re the only people out there picking you feel very alone. I always have it in the back of my mind that I really don’t want to meet a bear who has decided to pick berries too!
This is the first year that I can recall Hannah actually having plans for her berries – a yogurt, banana, and blueberry smoothie. Paul and I topped our vanilla ice cream with berries, but Hannah claimed that she didn’t want to “ruin the ice cream.” ?We clearly still have a ways to go with her.
It’s a whole lot easier to buy the fresh berries at the market, but it;s just not the same if you haven’t worked for them. Before the summer is out I will buy a 25 pound box of fresh berries for the freezer so we can enjoy them through the winter.
If picking berries wasn’t enough work we made a spur of the moment decision to stop and hike Pigeon Hill. It’s less than a mile to the summit, and it was worth the trip. Well, it’s worth the trip now that I look at the pictures in the comfort of my home with a cool breeze coming in through the windows. It was our second hike up the hill and we’re in no better shape for it than we were the first time! Click here for pics of our first outing.
The sky was so clear that we could see Petit Manan Lighthouse off in the far distance.
I’m tired all over again just thinking about it. I think I’ll put my feet up and enjoy my blueberries!