Monthly Archives: August 2013

Baycation 2013, Part III: Musgrave Harbour

We left Fogo Island on August 8th, catching the 1:45 ferry back to Farewell. As much as I loved Fogo Island, I would NOT be able to live in a place where I had to depend on the ferry system. The day after we left, Fogo’s Brimstone Head Festival kicked off, bringing hundreds of visitors to the island. When the time came to sober up and go back home, many people found themselves in a ferry line-up of 300+ cars, and many had to sleep in their vehicles overnight so that they wouldn’t lose their place in the line.

We had another spectacularly calm crossing that day, and made our way from Farewell to Mark’s hometown of Musgrave Harbour on the Kittiwake Coast, where we would spend the next few days relaxing and eating home cooked meals. Thanks again Ena & Reg for the wonderful hospitality, as always.

I don’t know why this town doesn’t publicize their 10km of white sandy beach, maybe they don’t care for outsiders and want to keep it for themselves.  Too bad, their secret is out now! Read the rest of this entry

An Evening with Belt Drive Betty

We all complain about the government, it’s like a national pastime. We constantly gripe about taxes and cut-backs, and are appalled at the latest scandals.

How many people actually get off their arse and actually DO something about it though? How many people write letters to their MHA’s and MP’s (those people work for us, remember!), or put themselves out there to publicly display their opinions, to say to our leaders “what you’re doing is wrong”?

I had the privilege of meeting one of those people last Wednesday evening. Read the rest of this entry

My Touring Delimma

Last summer I went touring on my bike for the first time, from St. John’s to St. Anthony and back. I enjoyed it so much that this year I spent a week and a half exploring the north east coast and the Eastport and Bonavista peninsulas. It’s become clear to me that this is how I want to spend my holidays for as long as I’m physically and financially able to do so, and now I’m toying with the idea of buying an actual touring bike. Read the rest of this entry

Baycation 2013, Part II: Fogo Island

I have to admit, I had never, ever considered going to Fogo Island. Until recently my only knowledge of the place consisted of the coverage provided by Here & Now when they were having issues with the ferry. However, with the new multi-million dollar upscale hotel now open for business in Joe Batt’s Arm, I figured “hey, if it’s good enough for Oprah, I guess I’ll go over for a look”. Read the rest of this entry

Baycation 2013, Part I: New World Island

We left St. John’s on the morning of August 5, early enough to get ahead of the rain travelling northward. It was quite chilly, I had the liners in my pants and jacket, a thin fleece sweater and warm gloves, and I almost wished I had put on my electric vest. That being said, there was absolutely no wind, making for a comfortable highway ride. We droned westward on the TCH, running into road construction only once, just this side of Gander. We were stopped for only a few minutes, and continued on to Gander for lunch and a break. We had lunch at Subway then a coffee at Tim Horton’s, which would turn out to be the last time we partook of chain restaurants for our entire vacation. We generally try to stick to “mom & pop” restaurants when we travel, and have had amazing food at most places we’ve visited.

When we felt warm enough to get back on the bikes we headed north on Route 330 to Gander Bay and across the causeway on Route 331. From there we took Route 340 which took us over three more causeways before we reached New World Island in Notre Dame Bay. The geography of this area is very different from what I’m used to on the Avalon. I guess it would be called an archipelago because the ocean is absolutely peppered with islands. The bigger, populated islands are connected by causeway, and contain many small communities that are all quite historic and beautiful.

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Hundreds of Islands

Read the rest of this entry

Dead Ends and Gravel

After spending the past ten days exploring Central-ish Newfoundland by motorcycle, I’m back in my own little corner of the city, relaxing and reflecting on our vacation. It was spectacular to say the least, every day I saw something so breathtakingly beautiful that my pictures really don’t do it justice. Read the rest of this entry

Update from the Road

Since leaving on our “staycation” last week I have realized that updating this blog via cell phone is NOT easy, so I have waited until now when I have the use of a laptop to publish an update of our travels. We have seen and done so much over the past few days that it will take me awhile to organize pictures and put together a complete run-down of our trip, but here is a quick update of our adventures so far.

We spent two nights on beautiful New World Island, staying in Dildo Run Provincial Park. We had severe thunder storms on the second day we were there, but managed to get out for a ride around the area when the storm cleared in the afternoon.

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I *think* this is Moreton’s Harbour

We caught the 9am ferry to Fogo Island the next day. As I get horribly seasick I was quite relieved that the seas were impossibly calm for both our crossings. I will eventually  be devoting an entire blog post to this beautiful little rock in the North Atlantic. It’s a place that was never on my radar to visit, but I’m so glad I did! We had an amazing stay, so much to see.

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Joe Batt’s Arm, looking across at the new hotel

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Taken at the “battery” in Fogo.

After our night on Fogo Island it was back to Mark’s hometown of Musgrave Harbour for the annual “Scuff & Scoff” festival. This is the point where we turn around and hopscotch back towards St. John’s, and right now we’re trying to decide where our next stop will be…Eastport? Bonavista?  As the forecast for today is rain and wind, today will be a good opportunity to nail down our itinerary.

Stay tuned folks! 🙂

You Better Get Outta the Way

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my bike, my city

I’m old enough to remember when St. John’s was a much smaller city. The economy was bad, many parts of the city were rundown and decrepit, and you needed a note from the creator to get a decent job. Life here was different then, on many levels. The pace of life was…well…slow.

Then came the oil money, and things began to change. The city has grown exponentially, with forests being mowed down to make way for new subdivisions and construction in the downtown rivaling that of Berlin after the Second World War. At least 75% of the population seems to be – judging from the immense houses and expensive toys – making a fortune in jobs relating to the oil and gas industry, and everyone is in a MAD HURRY. During the week, get out of the way because they’re trying to get to work to make money. On the weekend, get out of the way because they’re trying to get to a store so that they can spend it. Read the rest of this entry

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