Monthly Archives: August 2014

newfoundland – day 12

day 12 – july 12:

awoke bloody early! looked out the window – blue hour was here already… i was out just before 5am and i made my way back to route 80 northbound for shag rock at whiteway once again.

disappointment. it was raining and as the light filtered through the clouds and fog, it was apparent that not much had changed since last night. 🙁 i pressed on in the hopes that the fog would eventually give way…

the fog was taking its sweet time lifting, so i ventured out to some of the surrounding communities.

back in whiteway…

it was fully six hours before i made it back to the motel. i had just enough time for a quick shower before checking out. st. john’s, here i come…

i first hit the airport to file my paperwork with the car rental agency then stopped at the tourist bureau. the agent was kind enough to direct me to quidi vidi, formerly a historic fishing village within the city of st. john’s. today, it is a quaint and charming village with restaurants, residences and is home to the quidi vidi brewing company.

continuing my drive around the village, i ended up entering the cuckold cove trail off of cuckholds cove road east to experience something rather special and unique, as it turns out… as i was gathering my gear for the hike, a gentleman (with his young son) asked me if i was going to go see the bald eagles. i had no knowledge of them, so he directed me to where i would be able to view them… i hiked up the well-maintained trail and took in some gorgeous sights along the way until i got to a good vantage point to witness the eagles.

all told, i was on the trail for about 5 hours, roasting in the sun. the scenery, the spectacle of the bald eagles and the warm sun all made for a peaceful afternoon. i still had the rest of the evening to go, so i headed towards downtown to visit…

i wasn’t going to book a room for the night, opting instead to stay at the airport to await my early morning flight… ciao newfoundland! see you again soon, i hope… 😉

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newfoundland – day 11

day 11 – july 11:

bright and early indeed, i left corner brook thoroughly impressed with this little jewel of an urban oasis in that sea of rugged and scenic landscapes. not wanting to have another long drive, i thought i would stay the night somewhere near the midpoint to st. john’s, say the city of gander.

well, it was a thought anyway… about an hour or so before reaching gander i decided to pull off at a visitor centre i had visited the week before. the gentleman there had been quite knowledgeable and had pointed out a few things for me to look out for. if he was there, i would tell him about the great time i had had and that all his suggestions were spot on!

peter b. was there and recognized me straight away… he asked about my trip and i told him about my adventures. i had left one of my business cards with him the week prior and he proceeded to tell me how impressed he was with my work. i thanked him for taking the time to look at my website. he then made a suggestion to me about another place to visit on my way to the east coast: shag rock just outside the town of whitbourne about an hour or so outside of  st. john’s… he showed me a picture from a website and i was immediately taken – i had to photograph it!

well, so much for taking it easy! i blew past gander, gambo, glovertown, terra nova national park and clarenville, all along the tch before arriving at whitbourne.

the weather had started to turn and i was getting anxious that i would not be able to see and photograph shag rock properly because of the weather. i found a room, unloaded my bags and started on the half-hour or so trip to shag rock north along route 80. hindsight being 20/20, i would have been much better off finding accommodations in whiteway, but it’s no use crying over spilled milk. 😉

it was fogging over…

i would have another attempt in the morning before continuing on to st. john’s…

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newfoundland – day 10

day 10 – july 10:

i got to the parking lot to get on with my day and my heart sank when i saw the car… what?!? another flat tire? haven’t i seen this before? i put the doughnut on again – this time it was a nail in the tire. proceeded to the gm dealership again – this time in corner brook, of course. a phone call to the rental company to report the incident and a couple of hours later i was on my way again.

i had wanted to do the north shore drive this morning but after checking with the visitor centre on the conditions of the roads, i became gun-shy – they were apparently in rough shape and i certainly did not want to tempt fate again… the sky was blue with scarcely any clouds and it had gotten too late for ‘good light’ – that cemented it – no north shore drive.

in spite of the harsh light, i visited the corner brook gorge – a relatively easy hike from crockers road to a lookout, then to a bridge and back.

before breaking for the afternoon, i headed to marble mountain – a local ski resort just 7 kilometres east of corner brook in steady brook – to do some scouting for photo ops. as i was looking around i saw a sign pointing to steady brook falls. i followed the signs to a dirt road and parked the car when i saw a set of wooden stairs with the same sign pointing in the falls’ direction. i made my way up the stairs to a hiking trail that led to a viewing platform. it was an impressive sight, indeed, but the light was not cooperating… i decided i would come back in the late afternoon and hopefully get some decent shots then.

i had also been made aware of another attraction with potential scenic appeal: captain james cook national historic site. i would do the falls in the late afternoon, grab some dinner and head over to the historic site after that…

as luck would have it, even in the late afternoon, the sun was still blazing directly on the falls. so i did some hiking in the general area until the light got better.

  • after getting some take out for dinner, i headed to captain james cook national historic site and worked my way around the pathways until i came upon a beautiful spot to catch the sun going down and to enjoy my meal.

    with the end of this day, i realized that my photo tour of newfoundland was coming to an end. tomorrow, i would leave bright and early and drive towards st. john’s – probably stop about halfway there, get a room and continue on the day following so as not to have another marathon driving session…

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newfoundland – day 9

day 9 – july 9:

we got on the road at about 6am and proceeded on our scheduled itinerary. at some point before reaching main brook, i did have a moose cross the road in front of me. unfortunately, it sprinted off into the woods – i never did get a single opportunity to photograph one in its environment 🙁

it was a similar day to yesterday – foggy and overcast, but it made for peaceful and calm scenery as we arrived into main brook, a small fishing and lumbering community on the southwest shore of hare bay:

roddickton:

englee:

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bide arm:

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everything happens for a reason, as the saying goes… were it not for a malfunctioning internet connection, i would not have met robin and i certainly would have missed these towns that exemplify living in newfoundland’s hinterland. robin, it was a pleasure meeting you and thank you for the great tour – we shall meet up again one day! (for now it will have to be through facebook… ;-))

i left bide arm at around noon, after robin and i had some homemade ice cream at the local hardware store, randell james & sons. this store is the ‘goto’ place for virtually all necessities in bide arm: hardware, building materials, tools, garden supply, groceries, sears catalogue etc… gotta love small-town life! 😉

robin had suggested that i stop in at port au choix when i reached the west coast. i got as far as the parks canada visitor reception centre, had a quick bite and watched as the fog, clouds and rain rolled in. i did not get a chance to visit the pointe riche lighthouse either 🙁

back on the road, the 430 southbound to corner brook, it was still largely overcast until i got to deer lake. by the time i reached corner brook in the mid afternoon, it was a splendid, hot summer’s day again. the locals complained about the 30+ degree heat that they are largely unaccustomed to… i stopped in at the visitor centre to get my bearings then proceeded to the memorial university (corner brook) campus to check in at the residences.

i took it easy and rested up after the long drive from st. anthony. i headed out again in the early evening for the gorgeous south shore drive, heading west to the coast from corner brook.

 

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newfoundland – day 8

day 8 – july 8:

took it easy this morning on account of not only the grey skies, but also to get the car over to the dealership to deal with the wheel. as a matter of fact, took it easy today, in general…

back on the road, i hit the st. anthony harbour – everything was rather calm and quiet.

i ventured into the surrounding communities: st. anthony bight, saint carols and great brehat (pronounced bra). it was indeed a cloudy and foggy day, but there were still some icebergs about in the coves and inlets:

sometime in the early evening robin and i finalized our plans for leaving st. anthony. we’d hit the road at around 5:30am and make our way through a few small communities on the eastern side of the great northern peninsula along routes 432 and 433: main brook, roddickton, bide arm and englee. I would then retrace my steps back to the 432 and head back to the west coast and continue south towards corner brook…

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newfoundland – day 7

day 7- july 7:

an interesting day to say the least… was out of my room at the crack of dawn. last night’s fog was not evident this morning. i headed to fox point (aka fishing point) at the end of west street (on the coast) in st. anthony.

 

another presumed highlight of the trip was the forthcoming visit to l’anse-aux-meadows, the famous archaeological site offering proof of norse or viking settlement in north america (outside greenland).

so my interesting day begins… the roads in this part of the province are very spotty. apparently winter of 2013-14 has not been kind here either 😉 as i make my way to l’anse-aux meadows along Route 436, i find myself dodging potholes rather frequently. alas, one gets me and blows out my right front tire by damaging the aluminium rim! without cellphone service and no means of contacting roadside assistance, i proceed to change the tire using the spare doughnut in the trunk. fun, fun, fun!

 

about an hour later, i am back on the road and roll into the parking area at l’anse-aux-meadows. i borrow their phone to make a couple of phone calls to the car rental agency and the insurance company to report the incident. i decide that i will visit the attraction and then head back to st. anthony to have the wheel serviced at the gm dealership.

this morning, before the incident with the flat tire i had stopped in at the visitor centre serving the st. anthony area and booked myself into an iceberg/whale watching boat tour. it was scheduled for 4pm but i had no idea what i was in for at the dealership nor how long it would take, so i cancelled this boat tour and planned on doing it the following day. i drove back to st. anthony and stopped in at the gm dealership: bad news. the rim was not repairable (aluminium rims rarely are) and a replacement was not available in short order. thankfully, the service person i was dealing with – jordan m. – was able to help and figured a way to make the car roadworthy again. I could not very well make the 1100km drive back to st. john’s (via corner brook) on a spare doughnut! with the car rental company on board with his solution, i was to return in the morning for the repair.

it was now 3:45pm and i thought i would try to make the boat trip after all – made it by the skin of my teeth, as it were…

as you can see, the light is a bit harsh – but yet again, this was the last tour of the day… early evening upon us, i headed back to my room with a bit of dinner and decided to call it a day.

back at the room, my internet connection gave up. after a few consultations with the front desk, i gave up – they could not fix the issue. heading back up to my room, i met a fella named alex in the hallway. he was carrying his laptop, so i asked him if he was having problems with his connection also? his was fixed, he said, and proceeded to introduce me to his friend. robin – a computer whiz – had me up and running in no time and we chatted for what seemed like a couple of hours…

robin works for a private contractor monitoring fishing vessels for the fisheries ministry. has a number of university degrees and is knowledgeable about just about everything. what impressed me most about him was his deep love for his province and his knowledge of virtually every corner of it. he lives in a very small community on the east side of the great northern peninsula and offered to give me a tour of a few locales when i was ready to leave the day after tomorrow (on day 9).

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newfoundland – day 6

day 6 – july 6:

left rocky harbour and started on my drive up to st. anthony. planned a bunch of stops so i knew that what the map said would be a 5hr drive would end up taking a bit longer… lol! first stop: broom point, just north of western brook pond.

situated on the gulf of st. lawrence, broom point is where the mudge brothers spent their summers with their families fishing from 1941 – 1975. the land was purchased by the gros morne national park and in 1990 the original family cabin and fish store were restored. today, interpreters tell the story of the family and its fishing activities (primarily of the 1960’s era)…

somewhere between broom point and the town of st. pauls lies the fishing village of hickey’s cove. so far as i can tell, it does not appear on any maps and there are no road signs indicating it. unlike yesterday’s gull marsh, hickey’s cove has inhabitants during the summer and is substantially larger – there must have been about 20 or so cabins there as opposed to the fishing shacks in the former.

beyond hickey’s cove, i passed through cow head, shallow bay and parson’s pond before hitting another anticipated highlight of the trip: arches provincial park.

a natural rock archway created by tidal action is the centrepiece at arches provincial park. a wonderful place to just chill out and take in the beautiful scenery. i was once again blessed with beautiful skies and cloud formations during my visit…

continuing north along route 430 – the viking trail…

another one of those  unmarked fishing villages – this time josephine’s cove:

i had read about the old lighthouse at flower’s cove and sought to capture it from a couple of different vantage points…

arrived at st. anthony in the late afternoon after driving for about 9 hours or so… the fog was rolling in for the evening. i got a little dinner and went out to explore the town before calling it a day. 😉

arrived at

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