Day 29 - Jun 13, 2019
How do you know you’re in Maine?
The Lupines along the road bringing memories of reading Miss Rumphius?
A large lobster on the roof?
Our favorite bakery in Camden was missing this morning. Last time we were here Haley stole Mark’s pain au chocolate from the dashboard. We’re still enchanted by the town. We drove south to Portland and explored some of the area and found the climbing gym owned by a Hotchklss classmate of Andrea’s. On to a campsite at Winslow Memorial Park in Freeport on the ocean - in the rain - for a “homemade” dinner of mashed potatoes with hot dogs, mushrooms and corn - a bit of comfort food on this damp night. Looking forward to clearing skies and a beautiful view in the am
Day 28 - June 12, 2019
Driving through the point of entry always brings a smile and sends a shiver down my spine. We had such a wonderful time in Canada and can’t wait to plan another trip. We drove the coast of New Brunswick today and stopped at Dipper Harbor to see the tide move out to the Bay of Fundy.
Seafood beckoned for lunch and we couldn’t resists Ossie’s for our last Canadian meal.
Stuffed, we continued to tonight’s campground in Camden Maine where we finished the map on Baby Beluga. Celebrate!!!
Day 27 - June 11, 2019
We were up at 4:30am to see the sunrise over the water. The sky became pink and then orange as the sun crept toward the horizon. There was nothing to see but water and no one else awake. Such a special experience. We walked the beach and saw the nesting swallows with small dens in the cliff just below the turf.
The drive from PEI to New Brunswick took us over the Confederation Bridge but not before we spotted Cow’s - the best ice cream in the world. We HAD to stop. I had a scoop of cookie dough and Mark had a scoop of blueberry and one of chocolate (of course.). Verdict — not as good as Steve’s in Kent or Baldacio’s in Danbury, but much better than Baskin Robbins (no REAL ice cream) in Reno.
Over the bridge we headed to Fundy National Park to see the tides that can change by 46 feet. As we drove we noticed deep trenches and fields on the side of the road and realized that the tide was out and these beds were temporarily empty.
On a whim we stopped at Hopewell Rocks and took Bono down to the beach. We joined a tour where Pierre told us stories of the rocks as we passed them by. With low tide, we could see the rocks balanced on narrowed stems. Each formation had a name - elephant, lover’s rock, pig, whale - and the ones on thin bases were dubbed flower pots.
The best part of the tour was seeing the peregrine falcon. First he was pointed out as sitting high up on a birch tree near the top of the rocks. We could hear him calling to his mate. Suddenly he soared overhead. Soooo magnificent.
It’s raining tonight but we had such a lovely day. Once again we’re tucked tight inside our metal tent and staying dry until we dash to the bathrooms.
Day 26 - June 11, 2019
There was an air of excitement this morning as we packed up the van to drive the Camp Breton Highlands. The winding roads and scenic pullouts displayed beautiful views of the Bay
A special treat awaited us as we entered the town of Cheticamp - a boulangerie (bakery). The aroma when we entered was heavenly — breads, croissants, muffins, scones — and we bought a few of each for breakfast!
The excitement of the day continued to build as we drove south and then west to the very that would bring us to our final prize - Prince Edwards Island.
The trip over was delightful and we burst into smiles when drove off the ferry. You see, we set a goal four years ago to take Baby Beluga to all the drivable states in the United States along with all the drivable provinces and territories in Canada. The pleasure of this day was amplified when we found ourselves at the Cavendish Campground in the PEI National Park. We celebrated with the absolutely best meal ever at the Blue Mussel Café in North Rustico The ending to a perfect day was the sunset over the ocean water that we can see from our campsite.
Day 25, June 9, 2019
It’s a seven hour ferry from Newfoundland to Nova Scotia. Because it was daytime we chose to not get a cabin but instead enjoyed the comfy seats and fun conversations with other travelers. The chatter was mostly about icebergs seen during their visit.
Once we rescued Bono from the van - no dogs allowed on deck - we began the drive to Cape Breton Highlands National Park. Oops, another road ended so we took a short ferry over to the peninsula that houses the park. Hooray, the campground near Ingonish Beach is open and there’s a site for us!
Day 24 - June 8, 2019
Forty-five years ago we formed our new family and were busy packing a van to drop things in Cambridge before heading out for a 3 week honeymoon on our bikes. The tent we (actually Mark) carried fit just the two of us and is far away from the luscious (and dry) accommodations of Baby Beluga. But, on those cold nights during this trip we used the green sleeping bag from that trip to add a bit of extra warmth.
Today we celebrated by driving the west coast of Newfoundland. So many old memories during the drive along with some new ones. Everything is so green and the table mountains are a stark relief agains the rolling hills. Seafood for dinner with berry pie and pudding for dessert. Then a walk on the beach near the Cheeseman Provincial Park Campground. Am I not the luckiest person to have found someone to share my life and build our family? And, after so many years, he still wants to spend all day in Baby Beluga with me (and Bono of course.)
Off to catch another ferry in the morning
Day 23 - Jun 7, 2019
Where does the fog stop and the sea begin? I couldn’t tell as the ferry moved between Labrador and Newfoundland. Up at 4:00am we drove to the ferry dock with hopes of catching the morning ferry instead of the evening one for which we had reservations. Success! We gained another day to see the western coast of Newfoundland. The ferry is large and modern with people having breakfast at tables or sleeping in seats bring back strong memories of the Alaska ferries. Perhaps it’s time to return there again.
Iceberg chasing once again we drove north to the community of St. Anthony. Stopping at the visitor center we discovered the Iceberg Festival was beginning. Local lore and quilts were a delight. We had a delicious lunch at the Lighthouse Cafe and a spectacular look at an iceberg as we continued south.
The Allstays app helped us find a campground in Gros Morne National Park - even without signal. Nestled in the trees we fell asleep to the sound of rain staying nice and dry inside Baby Beluga
Day 22, June 6, 2019
Today’s goal was to complete our drive through Labrador. The Labrador Coastal Highway put us onto gravel roads for most of the trip. The ruts in the road deliver a ride much like bouncing on a washboard. Both Bono and I suffered a bit with upset stomachs. Ewwww. We did have our trusty satellite phone in case of emergency.
The drive was dreary until we hit the coast and saw our first harbor followed by icebergs. Yes, Nico, another sign of global warming. Still, they are magnificent. We’ll catch the ferry to Newfoundland tomorrow - hopefully in the morning. An old favorite — bacon, eggs and toast — for dinner followed by a SHOWER topped off the day.
Day 21, June 5, 2019
AT 10:30 pm last night the sun was still setting giving us a view of a band of pink out the back window as we drifted off to sleep, The temperature got down to 29 during the night but we were snuggled warm inside the van with hats and extra sleeping bags.
It was a longer than expected drive across the TransLabrador Highway. Trees lined the road and the raised highway was bordered by deep puddles, swamps and rushing rivers. A rather inhospitable environment. Sometimes things opened up where the remnants of forrest fires were broken up only by the plethora of high tension wires again. Because of the permafrost and water, telephone poles were often surrounded by rocks that were boxed in. There was a sense of accomplishment knowing that few Americans take this journey…or maybe they are the smart ones?
After dinner in Goose Bay we drove to the real end of the road in Northwest River. Looking out across Lake Melville were snow capped mountains while the shore housed snow/bergs. Spending the night boon-docking at the Natural Resources building lot as the only campground is under new management and hasn’t yet opened. - now they tell us.
Day 20- June 4, 2019
We were up early this morning since we knew it was going to be a long day if we were to make it to Labrador City before dark. The road north is paved, then gravel around the meteorite created lake, then paved a bit more until it degrades to sludge 50 miles from Labrador City.
We’d read that that the biggest iron mine in North America was near Labrador City. As we got to Fremont - the last city in Quebec - we started noticing cliffs of vibrant colors in the distance. The drive took us back onto the gravel road and we crossed the train track 12 times. All roads, and tracks, lead to the processing center. I have to say that the color of the water made me quite sad. I don’t know that I’ve every seen pink/red water but the water near the plant was clearly polluted with runoff from the plant.
As dinner time approached we crossed over into Labrador! We picked up our free satellite phone at the Warbus Hotel and grabbed a quick dinner at McDonalds. With advice from the incredibly helpful clerk at the hotel, who called the campground owners for us, we headed east another 45 km to the campground. Bumping down another dirt road that dead ended at Lac Grande Hermine. The owners greeted us with smiles and welcome. They had recently purchased the campground and were still renovating but offered to let us stay the night There was still lots of snow and the water isn’t on yet but the lake view at sunset was definitely worth it.