Leaving New Castle

The Route 1B causeway back to Portsmouth is a long, scenic drive, where you see the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard to one side, and the back channel area with its little islands to the other. Sometimes you will see fleets of little sailboats coasting on those sheltered waters under the sunny skies. In any case, like all of Route 1B, you want to take it slow and easy to enjoy the ride – and be on the lookout for pedestrians, since the road is narrow and without any real sidewalk.

You will see a sign on the first island that simply states “KPYC” – or “Kittery Point Yacht Club” – which Trixie thinks is odd because Kittery is on the other side of the river from where we are driving.

There are two proper bridges connecting the causeway and islands; you will see fishermen trying their luck off of them in the summertime. The first one is the Joseph G Sawtelle Memorial Bridge. You can pull over right before it and take in the view. To the right, you will see the old South End shoreline of Portsmouth, with the North Church steeple riding up from the old homes. To the left you will see the islands of the back channels, and a large yellow house that was once the Governor Benning Wentworth Mansion hiding in the trees. If you look hard back the way you came, you can glimpse the roof of the Wentworth by the Sea hotel in New Castle’s western shoreline.

Parking or pulling off from this point on is almost impossible because the road is narrow, so Pops always drives slowly along here, before we get off the short scenic Route 1B, and head home to rest up for the next big adventure.

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