Saturday, August 6, 2016
Off to Newfoundland
Photos: July 31, 2016
A farewell to Cape Breton and a spectacular drive to North Sydney. The vistas are amazing.
We drove past the Alexander Graham Bell museum. Did you know that he spent time in Baddeck? They arrived there in 1885 and built two homes on their estate which they names Beinn Bhreagh (Gaelic for Beautiful Mountain). He did a lot of experimental work here on flight and a precursor to the hovercraft. His aircraft, The Silver Dart, was flown here. During the last thirty years of his life he spent a lot of time in Baddeck, dying there in 1922. Both he and his wife are buried on top of their mountain.
We lined up for the Newfoundland ferry - a hot wait on a very sunny day. The shortest ferry ride goes between North Sydney, NS and Port aux Basques, NL and takes between six and eight hours. Last time we went to Newfoundland we took the longer route between North Sydney and Argentia. It takes around 14 hours.
An enormous number of cars and trucks fit onto the ferry. I learned that over 50% of the goods going into Newfoundland get there by ferry.
The crossing was very smooth on this magnificent day.
Newfoundland is also known as "The Rock" - soil is not deep and bedrock shows through everywhere. Some of the electricity and phone poles are anchored in structures filled with large rocks as they cannot be buried deep enough to be supported.
Port aux Basque was named for the many fishermen who fished this area from the Basque region of Spain and Portugal starting around the 1500s. The Grand Banks which are located off Newfoundland are a relatively shallow part of the ocean with plentiful fish (at least that was the case before over-fishing). European fishermen came here and brought their catch back to Europe after salting it to preserve it.
After a supper of Bermise ginger moose (a moose stew) we took a walk and enjoyed the sunset. Watches have been changed to Newfoundland time (UTC -2.5).