Lonnie and Sue - Traveling North America

2007 - August 13 to September 1 Travels in Newfoundland

 My campground rating system is on a scale of 5/5 with the first number being the levelness of the site and the second being the appearance.  A 3/3 would be an average site.

 I have left the prices in for comparison and to give a general idea of what to expect.  Depending on when you read this, factor in inflation.

You can read it through or select specific locations below.

Travel Log - August 13 to September 1, 2007     
[Tab Newfound'd 5]

08-13-2007      Mon     Day 134          Trip Meter:  59.5 

Fuel:   The jeep at Irving in Mount Pearl, NL.  $1.118 = $4.017  

Driving Directions:   Headed west on TC 1.  Got off at exit 30 and took 70 north to the campground.  The map indicated pavement but first half of the road was rock – really rough rock.  

Days Activities:   Had an appointment to get the oil changed in the coach at Canada Eastern Cummins at 8 AM.  Departed campground at 7:30 AM.  Got there at 7:55 AM but they didn’t get started on it until 2:00 PM.  Departed Cummins at 4:00 PM.  Oil change and lube cost $272.46.

Sue went shopping and to the post office while we were waiting for them to start on the coach.  Our mail was in – was received in St. John's on July 25th.  Looks like post office people screw up everywhere.  Since our mail had arrived we headed for Clarke’s Beach instead of returning to the campground in St. John’s. 

  • Campsite:   Mountainview RV Park, Clarke’s Beach, NL – 7 nights - site # 51 - grass pad - pull thru - 30 amp, water, sewer.  Rating 4/2.  Got setup at 6:00 PM.  Cost $100.00 for the week. 
Our campsite at Mountainview RV Park, Clarke’s Beach, NL.

Additional info:  Have a table, fire ring, and large grassy area at the front door.  Campground is on 2 levels.  We are in the older upper level and it is primarily seasonal units.  The lower level looks like it was put in during the past 2 years.  They are still working on it.  The sites are crushed rock with no grass or trees but is next to a small pond.  It appears the owner is trying to attract cravens.  We had only planned to stay 4 days but extended it to a week.

It took us 2 hours to go 49 miles because of a traffic jam on TC 1 and the bad section of the 70. 

08-14-2007     Tue     Day 135 

Days Activities:   Left home at 10:35 AM to start touring the Baccalieu Trail today.  Will be traveling north along the coastline.  The Baccalieu Trail covers the northwest portion of the Avalon Peninsula.  Head to the west side and started the tour at South Dildo.  Stopped at the Whaling & Sealing Museum but it doesn’t open until 1:30 PM so just continued on our drive.  

Stopped in Whiteway for lunch at Brown’s Restaurant.  It has been named the top restaurant on the Baccalieu Trail for the past 3 years and one of the top Canadian restaurants.  We each had a bowl of seafood chowder, which was really good, and Crab auGrautin, which was delicious.  It was cooked and served in the crab shell.  For desert we shared a deep fried brownie with ice cream that was simply fantastic.   

Stopped at a library and it was open.  The hours were 1:30 to 4:30 Tue-Thur.  Talk about luck – we haven’t had much where libraries have been concerned.  Sent Karen the postal code for North Sidney.   

In Heart’s Content we stopped at the Heart’s Content Cable Station, a Provincial Historic Site.  This is the point where the 1866 trans-Atlantic cable landed.  It only took two weeks to lay the 2,500 miles of cable.  A telegraph site was established and operated until it was closed due to newer technology in 1965.  At one time, during WW I, there were 300 telegraph workers employed here.  The first cable that was scheduled for this site in 1865 broke during installation about 600 miles from Newfoundland.  After the successful completion in 1866 the ship went back to sea, used grappling hooks to retrieve the broken cable, spliced it, and completed the connection giving the telegraph company two cables in the same year.  Cost $3.00 each. 

In a prior entry I had made mention of where the 1858 cable landed in Middle Cove.  An exhibit here indicated it landed in Bull Arm, known now as Sunnyside. ???? 

Drove out to the Heart’s Content Aid to Navigation tower.  Looks like a lighthouse to me.  The light is powered by a solar panel.  Sue took pictures of the lighthouse and of the town from the point.

Stopped at Victoria.  There is a power station museum that is a historic site, an old paddle wheel power saw mill, and a Newfoundland pony farm listed in the guide book but when we got to them all three were closed, as in out of business. 

Got home at 5:35 PM.  Tour today was 114 miles.  We didn’t take many pictures during the drive today.  Even though it was a scenic drive it was not that picaresque.     

Heart’s Content Aid to Navigation tower.
View of Heart’s Content,

08-15-2007     Wed     Day 136 

Fuel:   The jeep at Irving in Clarke’s Beach, NL.  $1.118 = $4.016 

Days Activities:   Departed home at 9:45 AM.  Returned to Heart’s Content to continue the tour along the north coastline.  

We passed a man alongside the highway that has stopped his car, gotten out, put his inline skates on, and was skating in the breakdown lane.   

At Winterton stopped at the Winterton Boat Building & Community Museum.  It depicts the history of boat building in Winterton – a major industry in the community at one time.  On display was a Newfoundland fishing boat that was build by 4 teenagers in 2003 - under the supervision of a master boat builder.   Also had a display depicting the hardships of the fishing families during the 1800 and 1900’s.  It was a great little museum.  Sue took pictures.  Cost $4.00 each.  

While in the museum found out why we have not been seeing any Newfoundland Ponies.  In the 1980’s the most of them were sent to the slaughterhouse.  By 1990 there were only about 120 left out of several thousand.  An effort was made to save the breed and today there are about 500 on the island – we haven’t seen any. 

Stopped at Hant’s Harbour and took pictures of the lighthouse across the harbour. Tried to drive to it but there was no available road so the long shot is all she could get.  Also took pictures of an old fishing stage and flakes that were built in 1905.  It is under ownership of the local historical society and they are in the process of restoring it.   

Drove through the harbour at Old Perlican.  There is a large harbour and there were a lot of large fishing boasts and pleasure boats in anchor.  Took pictures of one being moved to dry dock.   

Took highway 80-40 from Daniel’s Cove to Grates Cove.  There is a sign posted at the start of the highway that said it was not maintained, and it wasn’t.  I stopped and took several pictures to show how narrow it was.  We were only able to travel about 10 mph on most of it.   

By the time we got to Grates Cove the fog was so heavy visibility was less than 200 yards.  We stumbled onto the “Rock Wall Historical Site”.  Nearly missed it because of the fog.  It is the location of an early 1800 settlement.  Rock was dug out of garden areas and used to build walls to fence in the gardens and separate property lines.  The walls have deteriorated over the years but are still very visible, in so far as we could see in the fog.  We climbed out on the mountainside but visibility was still less than 200 yards.  Approximately 150 acres of fence is still identifiable.   

In Grates Cove we stopped for lunch at a place called “Beyond Baccalieu”, a craft store and café.  They had an excellent looking menu with reasonable prices.  We had the Shepherd Pie – it wasn’t very good.  The place has only been open 8 weeks and will be closing for the season in 3 days.  A couple from Ontario have a summer place here and they opened this place because they plan on retiring here in a few years.   

The café was setting on a point overlooking the harbour.  It is only about 75 feet above the harbour and the fog never cleared enough for us to see the water.   

When we left Grates Cove we turned back south.  As soon as we left the village the fog cleared.  About 5 miles later we turned back north towards Red Head Cove and we could see the fog bank hugging the coastline.  When we got to Red Head Cove it was completely fogged in.   

From Red Head Cove headed back south and stopped at Bay de Verde.  The village of Bay de Verde is located on a bay in a horseshoe shape.  We stopped at an overlook above the harbour and took pictures of the harbour and the houses that make up the village.  The houses were perched on the side of the hill surrounded the bay.  There was just enough flat land in the horseshoe to have a road.   

Headed back home because of the fog.  Drove through two more villages but visibility was about 100 yards.  Visibility was good out on the highway.  Got home at 5:00 PM.  Tour today was 152 miles.

Winterton Boat Building & Community Museum in Winterton.
Hant’s Harbour lighthouse in the far distance.
Old fishing stage in Hant’s Harbour that is being reconstructed. 
Highway 80-40 from Daniel’s Cove to Grates Cove.  Not maintained.
Red Head Cove.
Boat harbor in Red Head Cove.

08-16-2007     Thur     Day 137 

Days Activities:   Left home at 10:05 AM.  Going south on the east coast and tour a few villages then will head north.   

Stopped at the harbour in Cupids.  They were unloading a shrimp boat.  The shrimp were all in bags the size of 25 pounds potato bags so don’t have any idea how much shrimp they hold.  I talked to the owner.  He said he could continue shrimping until October but may have his quota by September.  He is on his second shrimping quota of 140,000 pounds this year.  When he goes out he can only stay for 120 hours but is only allowed to fish for 72 hours.  He had a crab quota of 120,000 pounds this year and he got all of it in only 3 trips.   

Each boat is required to have a “black box”.  That allows the fishery department to track the boats.  He said there was no place left to hide.  I took pictures of the boat and of a fish processing plant across the bay.   

Cupid is reported to be the oldest authorized settlement in Newfoundland.  This is at least the sixth village we have been in that claim to be the oldest in Newfoundland.  

It was settled in 1610 by John Guy with the aide of 39 settlers.  He built his plantation on a 60’ by 120’ plot.  Bear in mind the definition of a “plantation” given several weeks ago.  In 1995 archeologist located the site of the plantation and started excavating.  To date over 120,000 artifacts have been found.  We did a tour of the digs.  The tour guide was an old man of at least 75 and was a real “hoot”.  Sue took pictures.  Cost $3.00 each.   

The price of the digs included admission to the museum, so we went to the museum.  It wasn’t much but the archeology lab was extremely interesting.  We found out how they cleaned, numbered, dated, and cataloged the pieces.  Left an additional $5.00 donation.  We spent about 2½ hrs in this village. 

Continued on south to Brigus and had a lunch that wasn’t worth mentioning.  Brigus is a wonderful little village of about 1,000 people.  The houses look like pictures of an old English village.  The streets are narrow with the houses setting right on the edge of them.  There are several natural small craft harbours.  We took some pictures.  Sue took pictures of some of the houses. 

In one of the harbours a Captain Abraham Bartlett build a wharf on the other side of a long rock.  The only way to get to the wharf was by boat so in 1860 a tunnel was blasted through the rock – took 4 months.  The tunnel was about 60 feet long. 

In my opinion this is the prettiest village we have been in so far.  We saw 2 ladies out in the street sweeping with regular house brooms and wearing the orange safety vest.   

Headed back north and drove out to Port de Grave.  The guide book said it is one of the best deep-water harbours in Newfoundland.  I counted 12 of the large shrimp draggers in the harbour.  Those are the half million dollar plus boats.  I took a picture of one with a double reel.  All of the others were single reel.  The sun was in the wrong place for a full harbour picture.   

From the harbour authority office overlooking the harbour we saw a deep-water oil-drilling platform off the south point of Belle Island.  I asked one of the men in the office about it and he said he thought it was being moved in for repairs because it had been moving all day. 

Drove out to Hibbs Cove and went to the Fisherman’s Museum.  It consisted of 3 buildings.  One was an old building full of junk – not very interesting.  Another was the Porter House which was a house a fisherman named Porter built in 1905.  It was a 2-story house with 8 rooms, very very small rooms.  The third was an old schoolhouse that was built in 1853.  It was the most interesting.  It was an extremely large building for its time with windows on most of the seaward side.  There was a finished ceiling with decorative woodwork and fine woodwork on the walls.  The teacher’s area was a raised platform.  I asked the guide if there was a church in the village when the school was built and he said not.  I believe the building was a multipurpose building for school, church, and community activities.  Cost $2.00 each. 

There was a 2-K hiking trail leading to a lighthouse but was washed out by the tropical storm 2 weeks ago.   

Got home at 4:00 PM.  Tour today was 48 miles.  We didn’t get to all of the villages on the east coast part of the peninsula but that is the end of our touring for this section.  Tomorrow we will be going south to the southwest portion of the Avalon Peninsula.

Fishing boat in Cupids Harbour.  Unloading shrimp.
In Cupids stopped at the archeological dig at the John Guy plantation.  This was our guide.
In Brigus the fishing docks were on the other side if this rock.  The tunnel was cut in order to get to the docks. 
Sue in Brigus.
The harbor at Port de Grave.
Don't remember where this was but it was the centerpiece of a village we drove through.


08-17-2007     Fri     Day 138 

Days Activities:   Departed home at 9:10 AM/  going south and do the “Cape Shore” drive.  Took TC 1 west, got off at exit 27 and went south. 

From 7 miles east of Placentia we had driven next to what I thought was a beautiful lake.  It turned out to be an arm of Placentia Bay.  Stopped at an overlook about 2 miles from the village of Placentia and Sue took pictures of the arm of water and the lift bridge that crosses it.  Placentia was considered the “French Capitol” of Newfoundland.   

We stopped at the Castle Hill National Historic Site, the original site of Fort Royal.   The French built the fort in the late 1600’s to protect Placentia from pirates.  The fort set over 300 feet above the bay.  Its height insured ships cannons could not be elevated enough for shot to reach it but the cannon from the fort could bombard anything that entered the bay.   

The walls of the fort were double construction meaning an outer wall, an inner wall, and the area between filled with dirt and rock.  The outer walls were over 10 feet thick at the base, about 4 feet at the top, and 15 feet tall.  The inner walls were narrower and were primarily to retain the dirt.  There was 14 feet between the walls that allowed the cannon to be placed on the area between the walls.  The dirt was floored with planking to make it easier to work on. 

I stepped off the area inside the fort and it was 35’ by 59’.  That is not much space for the 4 buildings that were inside the walls.  Bear in mind that the walls of the buildings were of rock and over a foot thick.  Did not see any record of the number of men stationed here but there were 14 cannon on the walls.   

When the war ended in 1713 the British acquired all of Newfoundland from the French and took possession of the fort.  The French moved all of their people to Cape Breton.  Over the years the fort was allowed to deteriorate.  Then when the French occupied St. John's in 1762 the British governor fled to Placentia.  He ordered immediate repairs be made to the fort and renamed it Castle Hill.  It has since fallen into serious disrepair.  Sue took pictures.  We had headsets for an audio tour.  Cost $3.10 each SR and AAA discount. 

While at the fort it started to rain and we got a little wet.  The wind was blowing at least 30 mph with gust at 40 or more with white caps on the bay.  It was extremely difficult to stand at times – but the view of the village and bay was well worth stopping.   

Fort Lewis was located at the foot of the hill below Fort Royal.  They have been digging this site since the early 1970’s.  We stopped and got an abbreviated tour because it started raining again.  The diggers were also the lab technicians and tour guides.  This was the main fort in the area and supported several other outposts including Fort Royal.  The digs covered an area about the size of a football field and had expanding into the backyard of a house adjacent to the dig.  We were told this is considered the most productive dig in Canada and there are numerous diagrams and maps of the construction of the fort.  Sue took pictures. 

The village of Dunville is about 5 miles to the northeast of Placentia (we drove through it to get to Placentia).  There was a lot of damage to the streets and highways in and around both villages by the tropical storm that went through 2 weeks ago.  There was a lot of flooding reported on the news at the time, with video of the flooding, but we didn’t have a point of reference to know where it was.  Now we know.  In fact it extended to sections of road all the way to the south end of the peninsula.  A news report 2 days ago indicated the flooding caused 6.5 million dollars in damages. 

The beach in Placentia is at least 1½ miles long.  There is a combination natural and manmade barrier between the beach and road.  The entire barrier is covered with a 5 foot wide boardwalk.   

We continued south to Cape St. Mary’s Provincial Seabird Ecological Reserve and the southwestern most tip of the peninsula.  It was a mile hike out to “Bird Rock”.  The rock is visible from the viewing deck of the interpretive centre but all that could be seen was white spots.  There was a light rain and the wind was blowing but we are tough – we took the hike.  The wind wasn’t very bad on the trail but when we walked up next to the cliff it was gusting at over 50 mph.  I don’t believe anyone could have jumped off – the wind would have blown them back onto land. 

The rain felt and sounded like BB’s hitting our coats.  I rented a rain coat and rain pants for $6.84 but Sue just wore her blue coat.   

The trail was moderate up and down until we got to the last quarter mile then it was mostly down.  The rocks on the trail were not bad but the sheep poo created a problem for Sue.  She stepped in some as soon as we left the center and had problems dodging it all the way out and back.  That was the first thing she complained to the staff about when we got back.  Oh, we had to walk out the one mile also and it sprinkled all the way out and back.   

At Bird Rock we took pictures and movies.  The rock and surrounding area is home for six different type birds and number about 180,000.  It was great.  Wish we had taken a lunch and stayed an hour or so.   

There was a slight bit of fog when we left on the hike but the center was completely fogged in when we returned.  There is a lighthouse about a quarter mile from the center.  No entry is allowed to it and it didn’t look like much, so Sue didn’t take a picture.  Only the light was visible when we got back.  In talking to the staff we were informed the fog is not unusual, in fact there were 27 days of fog in July.   

There was no charge for the center or hike.  We spent 1½ hours there.  Had 100 miles on the tripmeter.  Departed the center and headed home at 4:00 PM.  Continued the drive route and returned home by way of the east coast of the peninsula.  Entered TC 1 at exit 28.  Got home at 6:25 PM.  Tour today was 195 miles.

We are at Cape St. Mary’s Provincial Seabird Ecological Reserve walking out to "Bird Rock", in the rain.  I rented a rain suit.
Castle Hill National Historic Site, the original site of Fort Royal.  Looking down on Placentia.
That's me getting ready to go down to "Bird Rock".
The little building in upper left is where we started, in the rain.
There are a lot of birds here, and a lot of bird "stuff".  Very loud.
Walking back, in the rain.  Boy, did we have fun or what?

08-18-2007     Sat     Day 139  

Days Activities:   It rained all-night, a slow drizzleStayed in today and rested.  We deserve it.

 08-19-2007     Sun     Day 140 

Fuel:   The jeep at an Irving in Clarke’s Beach, NL.  $1.1087 = $3.905 

Days Activities:   It rained all night again but let up around noon.  It was windy all day.  Finally let up some in the evening but not enough for a fire so I had to get the grill out to cook steaks.  Fueled the jeep and got money from the ATM.  Otherwise just took it easy all day. 

08-20-2007      Mon     Day 141          Trip Meter:  369.8 

Fuel:   The coach at Irving in Bishop’s Falls, NL.  $1.122 = $4.031 

Driving Directions:   Went back to TC 1 and took it west.  Got off at exit 16 to the campground.   

Days Activities:   Departed campground at 9:00 AM.  Gas went down 4 days ago but diesel didn’t.  Today is the first time we have paid more for diesel than gas since arriving in Canada.  Just traveling today.  Broke camp in a sprinkle and drove in a light to moderate sprinkle off and on all day.   

  • Campsite:   Gateway to the North RV Park, Deer Lake, NL - overnight - site # 33 - gravel pad - pull thru - 50 amp, water, sewer, WiFi (FREE).  Cost $30.00 per night.  Rating 4/3.  Got setup at 4:45 PM.   

Additional info:  Has a table and fire ring at each site.  This campground just opened this year and is not in any of the camping books.  There Are 56 sites with 27 of them being 50 amp.  It is just off exit 16 on 430 going to the northwest peninsula. 

Did not unhook the jeep.  The weather was nice all evening. 

Our campsite at Gateway to the North RV Park, Deer Lake, NL.
A lot of open space at this campground.

08-21-2007     Tue     Day 142          Trip Meter:  256.3 

Driving Directions:   Got back on 430 north all the way to the campground. 

Days Activities:   It was raining when we got up this morning but had stopped by the time we broke camp.  Departed campground at 9:00 AM.  It started raining again about 30 minutes out and rained off and on the rest of the trip with really heavy rain during the last 30 miles.  Had to set up camp in the rain and got soaked.   

430 is the start of the “Viking Trail”.  From about the point of the village of “River of Ponds” on north we started seeing small gardens on the side of the road.  Most but not all of them are fenced.  It seems it is permissible to just farm in the highway right-a-way.  Sue saw a moose standing next to one of the gardens. 

Stopped at St. Barbe and got a copy of the Labrador Ferry schedule.  Also made a reservation for Saturday at the RV park across from the ticket office.  We will leave the coach there and just take the jeep to Labrador.   

  • Campsite:   Triple Falls RV Park, St. Anthony, NL – 4 nights - site # 15 - gravel pad - back in - 20 amp, water.  Cost $26.81 per night.  Rating 2/4.  Got setup at 3:30 PM.   
Our campsite after we moved in Triple Falls RV Park, St. Anthony, NL.  This is not the beautiful site mentioned.  Failed to get a picture of it before we moved.

Additional info:  This is a beautiful site with a table and grill.  It is a huge site with a thick stand of trees on both aside and the back with trees directly in front across the road.  Had to hook up the transformer because of low voltage and the power still dropped enough to shut off the EMS.  Will move tomorrow to a site with 30 amp – after a caravan moves out – suppose to be out by 10 AM. 

It stopped raining about 30 minutes after we got setup and the remainder of the night was really nice. 

Went to dinner at “Lightkeepers” located on Fishing Point.  Saw a huge iceberg drifting by.  The restaurant also is the Home of the Great Viking Feast that is located in the “Leifsburdir” located behind the restaurant.  It is a sod structure with a roof covered with grass.  Made reservations for Friday at 7 PM.  More about it after we go.

08-22-2007     Wed     Day 143

Days Activities:   It did not rain last night.  We waited around until 9:30 AM and the caravan had not started moving so we went into town to the library to check on places to stay in Labrador.  Took the laptop because the library doesn’t open until 1:00 PM.  Wireless is available from the parking lot.   

Found three places to call.  Returned to camp and used the payphone at the office.  Called our first choice and was able to get in for Saturday night.  The “Lighthouse Cove B & B” in L’Anse Amour, Labrador, 3 rooms, $40.00 a night for a double. 

At least half of the caravan was still in the campground so we went driving. 

Drove out 430-80.  At St. Carols I took a picture of an old machine used to travel in the snow.  Took 430.76 to Great Brehat.  We saw the best natural harbour area we have seen anywhere but because of the terrain could not get a good picture.  Returned to 430 and took it to St. Anthony and drove around to the west side of the bay.  I took a picture of Fishing Point across the bay.  Then we continued on 430 that ended at Goose Cove East.  I took pictures of an old fishing stage and green boat.  On the way out of the village we saw a moose and took pictures.  We saw a lot of gardens on the drive today.    

Got back to the campground at 2:00 PM.  The last of the caravan didn’t get out until 2:30 PM but we moved at 2:15 PM anyway.  Moved to site #62.  It is an ugly gravel parking lot with 30 amp and water.  There is one fire pit and all of the tables were around it.  The fire pit was in site #61.  Give it a 3/1.  

Spent a pleasant evening in the coach.  The high during our touring today was 50 degrees.  It is now 6:20 PM and it has warmed up to 56 degrees.  It this a great August or what?

This appears to be some type of vehicle for snow travel.  Looks abandoned.
Didn't get the lighthouse name but think it is a good scenic shot.

08-23-2007     Thur     Day 144 

Days Activities:   Departed home at 10:15 AM.  Drove out 436 and stopped at the “Dark Tickle Shoppe” in Griquet.  Bought a CD and an 8 oz bottle of blueberry sauce.  Watched a lady bottling 4 oz bottles of the blueberry sauce.  She opened boxes of bottles, rinsed them out, dumped the sauce from a large cooking kettle into a pitcher, and then using a small funnel filled the bottles.  Didn’t look very sanitary to me but probably more sanitary than the way homemade jam is canned.  The homemade stuff is sold all along the road.   

In the same village stopped and took a picture of a small boat parked in front of a house.  The owner was there and he said there was another one behind his house.  I took a picture of it also.  He said that he works on them during the winter months – more than one winter.  The boat in the front yard is remote controlled, has a lawnmower motor in it, and can do between 4 and 4½ knots. 

Same village saw 2 kids setting on the side of the road selling lemonade.  It was 57 degrees.  They had on their coats with hoods.  It was really not a lemonade day but very enterprising children.   

In Gunners Cove took a picture of a stand that sells homemade jams.   

Turned off on 436-11.  Drove by the Viking RV Park.  It is not a very large park but looked like an acceptable place to stay.   

Stopped at L’Anse aux Meadows National Historical Site at L’Anse aux Meadows.  Visited the museum, watched a video, then took a self-guided tour.  There was a guided tour available but we would have had to wait another 30 minutes to take it.  This is the internationally recognized site of the first Viking settlement in North America.  Sites of 7 building have been identified and it is believed the settlement had about 75 occupants.  Very few artifacts were found in over 10 years of digging.  It appears when the Vikings left they took all of their belongings with them.  Canada Parks has constructed 4 buildings the way they believe the Vikings would have constructed them in 1000 AD, the time of occupation.  It is believed the settlement only lasted 3 years.  Cost $8.10 each SR and AAA discount.  Sue took a lot of pictures. 

Took 437 and stopped at Pistolet Provincial Park.  Toured the campground – small sites and no services.  However, the park service does provide a guided tour of the Burnt Cape Provincial Ecological Reserve every day at 9:30 AM and 2:00 PM.  We will return tomorrow and take the 2:00 PM tour.  A free self guided tour is available but we want someone to tell us what we are looking at.   

Stopped at Ship Cove, walked out to a small mini village that has been built on a rock, and Sue took pictures.  Nearly every little village we have been to have their “claim to fame” and that little mini village is theirs.  It was built entirely with donated material from the village with the exception of the miniature doorknobs.  The light in the lighthouse was turning. 

At the northern most point at Ship Cove I took pictures of the northern most cemetery in Newfoundland.  In the cemetery are the gravesite of the 2 people buried the furthest north.  From the same spot I took a picture of 2 houses, one red and the other a white B & B, that were located across the way at Cape Onion.  These are the northern most houses in Newfoundland.  Just a worthless point of interest, to me anyway. 

In Raleigh took a picture of a really long dock and fishing stage.  Got home at 4:45 PM.  

Located in Griquet.  This man built it, is remote controlled, and can do 4 knots.
L’Anse aux Meadows National Historical Site at L’Anse aux Meadows.  A reconstructed Viking village with people in period dress giving demonstrations.
Part of the reconstructed Viking village.
Part of the reconstructed Viking village.
Mini village at Ship Cove.

08-24-2007     Fri     Day 145 

Fuel:   The jeep at Decker’s Clover Farm  in Cook’s Harbour - $1.156 = $4.116 

Days Activities:   Left home at 10:30 AM.  Drove out today on 435.  Saw a man loading firewood into his pickup from a woodpile along side the road so I stopped and talked to him.  He said he is entitled to cut 6 cords of wood a year.  Even though he is entitled to that amount he has to get a permit to cut.  I believe I mentioned in a previous post that a permit number must be attached to each pile.  He said he could stack it anywhere along the road he wants to as long as it is not on the right-a-way.  I suppose that means on government land, not private land.  He said the logs that are stacked with the firewood will be milled for lumber – said a man can always use an extra piece of lumber. 

Starting about 125 miles south of here and on all of the roads we have traveled in this area we have seen thousands of cords of firewood on the side of the road.  Have also seen thousands of logs stacked with the firewood.  The firewood ranges in length of 12” to 24”. 

In Cook’s Harbour took a picture of an old fishing stage and a house with the back to the cove.  Took more pictures of old stages and an old church that has been abandon.  Stopped next to a house to take pictures of the wharf across the cove.  It so happened it was the house of the man that I talked to about the firewood.  He told me how to get out to the point so that I could get a better picture.  The people are sure friendly in Newfoundland.  

Drove out to the Cape Norman Lighthouse and took pictures.  It is a working lighthouse but not open to the public.  This is the most barren looking place we have ever been.  I took pictures of the rock but don’t think they will really show just how barren and desolate looking this point really is.   If they wanted to make a movie of the surface of the moon this would probably be the location to shot it.  No makeup required.  From the lighthouse had a good view of Labrador.  Big ship passing through going southwest.  

This whole point, covering several square miles, is just solid rock in places and mounds of gravel in other with very limited vegetation.  You can see where a front-end loader has been used to just scoop gravel out of the side of the mounds. 

At Boat Harbour, which is at the end of the road, I took pictures of 2 old docks.  It was 5 miles from the lighthouse turnoff to Boat Harbour and the terrain all looked the same.  It fact I estimate that at least 50 square miles of this section of Newfoundland all looks pretty much the same, barren and desolate.   

One thing I haven’t mentioned before is that in the majority of the villages we have driven through has had a community playground.  They are usually fenced in, well maintained, with swings, slides, seesaws, and picnic tables.   

Went to Pistolet Bay Provincial Park and registered for the Burnt Cape Ecological Reserve tour that departs at 2:00 PM.  Cost $5.00 each.  We had purchased cold sandwiches so set in the day use area and had lunch and waited for the tour to start. 

The park service furnished the tour guide and the vehicle.  There was one other couple from Toronto on the tour.  The vehicle will only hold 6 passengers.  We departed the park and drove to Burnt Cape.  Had to go through Raleigh to get there.  Saw 2 young bull moose in Raleigh munching on the leaves of a shrub in someone’s front yard.  Sue took pictures.   

Got to the Reserve and made 3 stops and the guide talked about plant life.  Nothing grows very big on the cape.  The tallest plant was about 12 inches high. The cape is actually the starting point for the terrain that I mentioned earlier.   

On the way back saw 2 more moose on the side of the road but didn’t get any pictures.  Got back to the park at 3:45 PM.  We drove back into Raleigh and went to Taylor’s Carving shop and looked at some extremely expensive carvings.   

Got home at 4:20 PM.   

At 6:40 PM we left for the Great Viking Feast that in the “Leifsburdir”.  Dinner was buffet style, all you could eat – salad, jigg dinner (corn beef, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and cabbage), roast beef, baked cod, and baked salmon.  For desert there was a pancake with syrup and whipped cream.  Dinner, drinks, tax, and tip came to $112.89 for two.  Entertainment was a “Viking” style court with the audience acting as judges.  It was different, loud, and entertaining.  We set at a table with two couples - one from London, Ontario and the other from Ottawa, Ontario.  Got back home at 10:05 PM.   

We drove the jeep 323 in and around St. Anthony.

Cook's Harbour.
Cook's Harbour.
Cape Norman Lighthouse.
The area around Cape Norman Lighthouse.
Home of the Great Viking Feast in the “Leifsburdir” Restaurant.
Dinner at the Great Viking Feast. 

08-25-2007      Sat     Day 146          Trip Meter:  72.5 

Driving Directions:   Took 430 south then 430-50 to the ferry. 

Days Activities:  Had 3 beautiful days for sightseeing but had to break camp in the rain this morning.  Departed campground at 8:40 AM.   

A note about the gardens we have seen along side the road.  I talked to one lady about them and she said they are allowed to have a garden spot anywhere along the road they want to put one, as long it is government property.  They are not restricted to a specific size.  The majority of the ones we have seen probably don’t cover more than 500 sq feet.  She said that was because that was all the person wanted or needed to farm.  We saw very few gardens that had anything other than just potatoes in them.  It appears they can plant the potatoes and not have to tend them very often because most of these gardens are over 3 miles from villages and many further than that. 

Drove all the way to the ferry on the rain and fog.  

  • Campsite:   St. Barbe RV Park, St. Barbe, NL - overnight – NO site # - gravel parking area for storage of RV’s - back in – no services.   Cost $15.00 per night.  

Additional info:  There are 4 spaces available for electric – 2 with 30 amp and 2 with extension cords run through the office window for 15 amp.  Water is available but we were informed by another traveler that it was really bad water.  This is primarily a storage area for RV’s when people take their vehicle across the ferry to Labrador. 

We got parked at 10:20 AM and went to breakfast at the restaurant located in the ferry terminal building.  The terminal is located in the same building as a motel.  At 11:00 AM purchased a ticket for the ferry – cost  $23.25 SR.  Got SR for Sue but age for seniors is 65.  Regular rate for a vehicle and 2 adults is $30.25. 

The  ferry is the “Apollo”.  Departed at 1:00 PM and docket at 2:45 PM.  There was fog and rain all the way.  Visibility after we got off the ferry was less than a 100 yards.   

The ferry lands in Quebec.  Drove north on the highway – there is only one and it changes number at the Labrador border.  Got to the Lighthouse Cove Bed & Breakfast at L’Asne Amour, NL at 3:30 PM.  Told them we were in town and checked to see if there was a room available for tomorrow night – and there was.  Our plan is to stay over another night if the fog lifts tomorrow.  We can’t do any sightseeing in this soup.  We not only can’t see, it is dangerous to drive.    

We had passed a museum on the way in so decided to go tour it.  Got there and it was closed – was suppose to be open.  On the way back to the B & B we drove on past it and went out the point to the lighthouse.  It was too foggy to take the tour – the lighthouse has 122 steps to the top and the tour cost $3.00.  This is the tallest lighthouse in Atlantic Canada.  Sue took a picture.  On the way back I took a movie of the surf.  

Got back to the B & B at 4:15 PM, checked in, and was assigned to room #2.  Our host, Rita Davis, told us where a restaurant was for dinner.  She left a 5:00 PM to go and help a church group prepare for some kind of dinner tomorrow night.  She said the door was always open and to just make ourselves at home.  We read until time to go to dinner in L’Anse au Loup, about 3 miles north of the turnoff.  

We got back about 7:00 PM and no one was home.  A bit later another couple arrive that had been there a couple of nights earlier.  They were Roger and Suzanne from Montreal, QB.  They are on their way home by way of Cartwright.   They are getting on a freighter there and going to Goose Bay then driving home on the trans-Labrador highway.  They are behind schedule because the freighter they were suppose to get on ran aground and sprung a leak and they had to wait for another one.  It will be departing Cartwright Monday at 7:00 PM.  It is a trip Roger has been wanting to make and since he has “cancer of the blood” (we take that to be leukemia) Suzanne has agreed to it.  She told me she wasn’t pleased with the trip because Roger has been feeling really weak but she didn’t want to tell him no considering his health problem. They were both a real social couple.   

Rita returned home about 8:30 PM.  Shortly thereafter a third couple arrived.  They were Ken and Betty from Memphis, Tennessee, were here last night, and will be leaving tomorrow.   

We watched a video that was made last year about L’Asne Amour (means the Cove of Love) by “Land & Sea” and aired on CBC in 2006.  A doctor who stayed at the B & B in 2005 told a producer that worked for “Land & Sea” about the place and she filmed the segment.  

The Davis families have lived in L’Asne Amour for over a 100 years.  The current population is 7 people and even in the earlier days there was only 5 to 7 Davis families living on the cove.  Cecil and Rita Davis own and operate the B & B.  Rita started it in 1993 after the 1992 moratorium on cod fishing.    

Now the story.  In 1922 Cecil’s grandmother saw the British warship the HMS Raleigh run aground about 2 miles off the point.  She got all of her family together and they went out and helped rescue the crew.  Out of over 700 crewmembers only 14 were lost.   

They housed and fed the survivors for several days and some for several weeks.  The ship did not breakup immediately and food and suppliers i.e. tents, cots, etc were salvaged to help with their survival.  Some of the furniture was also removed and Rita had a piano and 6 dining room chairs that came off the ship.  Each of the crew had donated $1.00 each to purchase the piano for the ship and they gave it to Cecil’s grandmother.   

The chairs were given to her because some of the crew had gotten a little rowdy in the kitchen and broken several of her chairs so they replaced them with chairs from the officers mess dining room.  They are magnificent chairs and are still in great condition. Suzanne has a music degree and played the piano.  Rita had 3 children and none of them ever played.  She said the piano had not been tuned since it was removed from the ship.  It still sounded pretty good. 

Now for the rest of the story.  For the Davis family assistance the British Admiralty gave the cove to the Davis’.  I asked Rita how much land went with it and she pointed out behind her house and said, “it goes over the back of that hill”.   

We had a great visit with Rita, Cecil, and the other boarders.  Cecil still has a nephew that fishes the cove.  There was a herring trap set out in the cove that we could see from the living room window.  Rita said they took over 300,000 lbs of herring last year.  The Davis’ all made their living out of the cove but the nephew is the last one that will be doing it. 

Lighthouse Cove Bed & Breakfast at L’Asne Amour.
The lighthouse at L’Asne Amour.

08-26-2007     Sun     Day 147          Trip Meter:  57.1 

Driving Directions:   Back south to Quebec and the ferry.  In Newfoundland back to 430 south.  At 430-28 took it to Port au Choix and the campground. 

Days Activities:   Got up and had a continental breakfast of homemade bread and homemade jams.  At about 8:15 AM the electricity started blinking then went out.  It was still out when we left.  The fog was so bad we couldn’t even see the herring trap in the cove so decided to return to Newfoundland this morning.  Paid $40.00 for the room and left a $5.00 tip.  Departed at 8:55 AM.  

On the way to the ferry we saw linemen trying to remove a huge bird next from the top of a power pole so we stopped.  I took pictures and asked about the power outrage.  It was some material in the nest that had caused the outage.  Found that the nest belong to an Osprey, a bird that fishes.    

Drove 59 miles in Labrador. 

The ferry fee to return was $24.75 because I told them Sue was not a senior.  Departed at 10:30 AM and arrived in Newfoundland at 12:05 PM.  Hooked up and departed RV storage at 12:35 PM. 

I have mentioned firewood and gardens before.  Going north on 430 after the highway leaves Eddie Cove it cuts east across the peninsula.  The firewood starts showing up after you pass Eddie Cove.   We did not see any firewood piled along side the road south of Eddie Cove.  The gardens started showing up after you cross the peninsula and pass the intersection of 432. 

Between Eddie Cove and Green Island Cove we saw several thousand lobster traps stacked along side the road.  There was rain and fog all the way in.   

  • Campsite:   Oceanside RV Park, United Town Lions Club, Port au Choix, NL – 2 nights - site # 11 - gravel pad - back in - 30 amp, water.  Cost $20.00 per night.  Rating 5/5.  Got setup at 2:00 PM. 

Additional info:  Has 26 serviced sites and some tent sites.  There are several tables scattered around the campground.  Each site has a fire ring but it is across the drive in front of the site overlooking the ocean.  This is the best ocean view we have ever had.

I took a movie of the ocean from in front of the coach then walked across the drive and took it again without the fire rings and tables in it.   

We stayed in the remainder of the day except for a quick drive to town for groceries but all of the stores were closed.

Clearing out the bird next that caused our power failure at the B & B.
Our campsite at Oceanside RV Park, United Town Lions Club, Port au Choix.
The ocean view from in front of our campsite.
The ocean view from in front of our campsite.

08-27-2007     Mon     Day 148 

Fuel:   The jeep at Irving in Port au Choix, NL.  $1.125 = $4.006 

Days Activities:   Still overcast and looking like rain in the morning.  Real windy.  The coach rocked all night.  Started clearing in the afternoon so we went out about 1:15 PM for some sightseeing. 

Went to the Torrent River Salmon Interpretive Center.  Saw a video and read info about salmon.  The salmon had disappeared in this river because of logging activities but a 34 step ladder and Interpretive Center has been built at the 10 meter falls and the salmon reintroduced to the river.  It is gradually coming back to life and salmon fishing has been allowed the past several years after a long ban fishing this river.  The Interpretive Center was constructed to allow viewing of the salmon as they go through the last ladder above the falls.  The ladder entrance into the river is only about 12 inches wide and a video is taken of all fish that go through it.  They are counted and measured.  It was very interesting.  Cost $7.00 each SR.  Sue took pictures of the falls and ladder construction.    

On the way back from to camp we took a gravel road.  In a one mile section we saw more than 15 saw mills.  These were just large circular saw, about 30” blades, with a cutting slide and rollers.  Only two of them were under cover, the rest of them were exposed to the weather.  Six were serviceable and the others were in different stages of deterioration.  Two men were working at one of them when we went by.  One man was shoveling sawdust away from the saw and the other was sharpening the blade.   

In Port Saunders we drove out a gravel road to an area overlooking Keppel Island and the Keppel Island Lighthouse.  The lighthouse was constructed in 1901 and had a lighthouse keeper until 1989.  It was fully automated in 1992.  Sue took pictures.   

Went to the Port au Choix National Historic Site.  Saw a video and read about the history of three archeological digs in Port au Choix.  They cover 3 different time periods covering the period from about 5,000 years ago to 1,500 years ago.  Got AAA discounts for each of us and SR for me.  Sue cost $6.45 and for me $5.30.   

Drove out to the Pointe Riche Lighthouse.  It was not open to the public.  It is in real bad need of a coat of paint.  There was not anything there to tell us about the lighthouse.  The light was rotating but was not lit up.  Sue took pictures.  There is an old concrete foundation that appears to have been for a light keepers house. 

Went to Wu Restaurant.  Was advertised as Chinese food but I have my doubts.

The falls at Torrent River Salmon Interpretive Center.
The salmon run is under the grates.

08-28-2007      Tue     Day 149          Trip Meter:  106.3 

Driving Directions:   Went back to 430 and took it south.   

Days Activities:   Departed campground at 9:15 AM.  Stopped at the Arches Provincial Park.  All of the trees are dead.  Took a picture of the trees and arches.   

We have seen 4 caravans on this part of the peninsula – 2 at St. Anthony’s, part of one driving around Port au Choix yesterday, and one headed north today.  We have been told that about 50 a year visit Newfoundland.  The host at Port au Choix said he had 6 in this year. 

  • Campsite:   Gros Morne/Norris Point KOA Campground, Rocky Harbour, NL – 3 nights - site # 75 - gravel pad - back in - 30 amp, water, sewer, WiFi ($3 per night or $5 for 3 nights).  Cost $25.36 per night.  KOA discount so saved $8.89.  Rating 3/3.  Got setup at 11.25 AM.   

Additional info:  Have a table but no fire allowed in full service sites.  Normal KOA amenities plus a beach and fishing pond. 

Signed up for 3 days of WiFi for $5.70.  Sue signed on but when she signed off and I tried to sign on it wouldn’t work.  I checked with the office and found that the password is computer specific so had to get a 3 day password for my computer.  Was told WiFi will be free next year.  This is their first year for WiFi so will have it paid for after this season.  Don’t help us today though.   

Made reservations for the 1:00 PM Western Brook Pond boat tour for tomorrow.  Will cost $39.00 each plus the daily park admission fee of about $16.00.  Will pay at the boat dock. 

Took a drive and found that there is a charge to go out on each walking trail and for each attraction in the park.  That includes the boat ride we want to take out on Western Brook Pond tomorrow.  The admission is a one time daily fee.  So we went to the Visitor’s Center and purchased an annual National Park pass.  It will get us in all of the Canada parks until the end of August next year.  Cost $123.80.   

Went out to Lobster Cove Head Lighthouse.  It is not open for touring but the light keepers house has been converted to a museum.  We toured the museum and Sue took pictures of the lighthouse.  The lighthouse was constructed in 1898 and automated in 1970.  Then we took one of the hiking trails.  At the cliff we took stairs to be bottom.  I walked around the base of the cliff for about a quarter mile to another set of steps that took me back to the top.  Sue went back up and hiked the trails on top and we met up there.  The rock formations in the cliff were magnificent.  Nearly made me want to commence a study of rocks.   

Got back home about 4:00 PM.  Went out for dinner later.  Beautiful day today.

Arches Provincial Park.
Arches Provincial Park.
There was a "sort" of hiking trail below Lobster Cove Head Lighthouse.
A view of Lobster Cove Head Lighthouse from below.

08-29-2007     Wed     Day 150 

Days Activities:   Sue had a health problem so we went to the emergency room in Norris Point.  Took about 2 ½ hours but she saw a doctor and got a prescription.  It took from 8:45 AM to 12:30 PM to get through the hospital and get the prescription filled so didn’t get to take boat trip today.  The hospital cost $214.00.   

Went to Rocky Harbour and got ice cream after dinner.  In town set on a bench overlooking the bay and watched the sun set.  After the doctor visit it turned out to be another really nice day.

08-30-2007     Thur     Day 151

Days Activities:   Sue is still not feeling very good and since it rained today so didn’t go anywhere.  
Drove 80 miles in and around Rocky Harbour.

08-31-2007      Fri     Day 152          Trip Meter:  196.4 

Fuel:   The coach at Irving in Rocky Harbour, NL.  $1.114 = $4.008   Did not top off the tank, just put in enough to be sure we could get to a station in Nova Scotia.   

Driving Directions:   Continued on 430 south.  At TC 1 took it west to the campground. 

Days Activities:   Misting as we broke camp.  Rained for 175 miles then cleared up.  Departed campground at 9:00 AM.  Drove back 2 miles to Rocky Harbour and put fuel in the coach and got propane.  Back on the road at 9:30 AM. 

A note about the service stations in Newfoundland.  Most of them are called “Gas Bar”.  We have never been asked to prepay for fuel in either the coach or jeep.  Some of the pumps have been the old non-computerized pumps and I have just told the clerks how much I pumped – they don’t even check.  There is still a lot of trust here. 

  • Campsite:   Little Paradise Park, Port aux Basques, NL - overnight - site # 14 - gravel pad - back in - 30 amp, water, WiFi (FREE).  Cost $20.00 per night.  Rating 5/3.  Got setup at 2:00 PM. 

Additional info:  Have a table and grill.  This is just an overnight stop for rigs leaving and returning to the ferry.  Address is listed as Port aux Basques but it is 17 miles north of town – much closer to Cape Ray. 

On the way into Port aux Basques we drove out Red Rock Road.  Never did see any red rocks but when the road ended we had a nice view of the ocean.

Drove out to Cape Ray.  At the end of the road is the Cape Ray Lighthouse.  Didn’t take the camera so no pictures.  There is a plaque at the lighthouse that indicated this is the point where the telegraph cable left Newfoundland and landed at Cape Breton in 1856 which established a telegraph link from Newfoundland to North America.   

I believe Cape Ray is spread out more than any village we have seen in Newfoundland.  The AAA Tour Book lists the population at 745.  We didn’t see any boats, docks, or harbour.  Only saw one business in the village and that was a C-Store.  Suspect this is just a bedroom community for Port aux Basques.   

Out on a point at the edge of the village we saw an old bus that was painted blue.  There was a deck built in front of it so it must be a residence.  Looked like the deck was worth more that the bus.  

I talked to our next door neighbors.  He is from Milwaukee and she from Newfoundland but they have lived in Toronto for the past 12 years.  They own a home that was in the country but Wal-Mart recently built a store across the road from them and now there is a red light at the end of their driveway.  During our conservation we talked about Twillingate and she said that her brother-in-law had a home there and was a retired RCMP officer.  I asked if he lived in Ontario and just spent the summer there and she said yes.  Then I told her that we had met him when we were there.  We sat at a table with him during breakfast one morning during the rally.  Small world some times. 

They also had 2 dogs but didn’t bring them on the trip.  They are both Newfoundland dogs.  The male is 6 years old and weights 160 lbs and the female is 3 years old and weights 130 lbs. 

09-01-2007     Sat     Day 153          Trip Meter:  34.5 

Driving Directions:   Took TC 1 west to the ferry.   

Days Activities:   It rained all night.  I got soaked breaking camp this morning.  Departed campground at 7:10 AM.  It was 18.7 miles to the ferry. 

Ferry cost $321.55.  We left the jeep hooked up and that cost an additional $17.50 but believe it was worth it.  There was a 2% fuel surcharge added to the posted fees that had been added since our first trip.   

Got to the ferry terminal, through the ticket booth, through the agricultural inspection station, and parked in the staging area at 7:55 AM.  We didn’t know about the agricultural inspection until we got there.  No potatoes, plants, or soil is allowed to leave Newfoundland.  We had one potato but Sue talked the inspector into letting us keep it.   

The ferry was late.  It was suppose to depart at 9:00 AM but didn’t arrive until 10:25 AM.  I took a picture of it as it docked.  Unloading started at 10:30 AM and loading started at 10:58 AM.  We were the next to last vehicle loaded and we got parked at 11:31 AM.  Got under way at 11:37 AM.  Docked in North Sidney at 4:55 PM.  We got off at 5:10 PM.  The crossing took 5 hrs and 18 mins.  Since we are back on Atlantic Time we actually got off at 4:40 PM.

09-01-2007     Sat     Day 153          Trip Meter:  34.5 

Driving Directions:   Took TC 1 west to the ferry.   

Days Activities:   It rained all night.  I got soaked breaking camp this morning.  Departed campground at 7:10 AM.  It was 18.7 miles to the ferry. 

Ferry cost $321.55.  We left the jeep hooked up and that cost an additional $17.50 but believe it was worth it.  There was a 2% fuel surcharge added to the posted fees that had been added since our first trip.   

Got to the ferry terminal, through the ticket booth, through the agricultural inspection station, and parked in the staging area at 7:55 AM.  We didn’t know about the agricultural inspection until we got there.  No potatoes, plants, or soil is allowed to leave Newfoundland.  We had one potato but Sue talked the inspector into letting us keep it.   

The ferry was late.  It was suppose to depart at 9:00 AM but didn’t arrive until 10:25 AM.  I took a picture of it as it docked.  Unloading started at 10:30 AM and loading started at 10:58 AM.  We were the next to last vehicle loaded and we got parked at 11:31 AM.  Got under way at 11:37 AM.  Docked in North Sidney at 4:55 PM.  We got off at 5:10 PM.  The crossing took 5 hrs and 18 mins.  Since we are back on Atlantic Time we actually got off at 4:40 PM.
Our ferry back to Nova Scotia.

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