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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Labrador…Here We Come Ready or Not!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Our night stay at Plumley Cove was quiet and peaceful. The prior evening had been full of locals and visitors coming and going to take a look at the massive Iceberg. Icebergs, in this area, are common. This big boy was large and what can happen, as the tide goes in and out, the Icebergs tend to shift and move around. This action could possibly block access to
Iceberg at the mouth of Plumley Cove
Plumley Cove. I think this was why there was so much local interest. Like I mentioned in the last blog, all these people came to the trailhead parking lot and never gave us a second look and walked a few hundred feet to the Iceberg.

This morning the clouds and fog were gone. The sun rose over the little hamlet of Plumley Cove. We got are cameras and walked around taking pictures. The Iceberg had split in two during the night and the danger of blocking the channel to Plumley Cove appeared over. The village looked different with the sun to it's back. We have and will continue to have fond memories of Plumley Cove and the big boy Iceberg!

The drive to St Barbe was about a hundred miles. We would try and make the late morning ferry over to Blanc Sablon, PQ. With no or very little traffic, the road was ours. That’s not to say we could speed down the highway at will. The road, in this part of Newfoundland, has frost heaves, remnants even in summer. We arrived at St Barbe at 8:45am. The ferry building was open, but the ticket office window opens only two hours
Point L'Amour Lighthouse
before departure. That was ok. We were the only ones there and a fifteen minute wait would give us time for a coffee break in the camper. A 9 am sharp, six tractor trailers pulled along the highway and the drivers were inline at the window. I was now seventh in line and managed to get a standby ticket. Next, a two hour wait to board the ferry and as usual the suspense of waiting to see if we would have a spot onboard…remember no reservations. Yes, we were second to last to board! After leaving the truck camper on the deck below, we found seats and a table on the top deck solarium. Soon we were joined by people from a tour bus. The accent of our neighbor passengers appeared to be European. It wasn't long before we were in conversation with them. Germany was their country of origin and we soon were learning more travel information on Europe. Italy is a possible destination this fall and any tips on travel was appreciated.

The ferry ride over to Blanc Sablon, PQ is only 90 minutes. Soon, we were headed in a northerly direction towards the Labradorean border, 6 km up the road. First on our agenda...always to find a Visitor Center for maps and tourist attractions. The Visitor Center was a converted church filled with tons of information brochures and most of all a lady, a volunteer staff person, with answers to our many questions. She also noted that we could stay just about any spot off the highway to dry camp. Helen prepared a quick lunch and after filling our tummies, we slowly headed up Route 510.

The road climbed over these rocky mountains, descended back into the Ocean level several times. One of our first major stops was Amour Point to visit a lighthouse and in L'Anse Amour, the site of the oldest known burial monument in North America. The Maritime Archaic people buried a 12 year old child here 7,500 years ago.
Oldest Burial Monument in North America
The lighthouse is the tallest in Atlantic Canada. Both sites are very impressive! I've included a short video link of the road leading to the lighthouse. Road to Point L'Amour LighthouseOne has to stop, step back and think of the history of this area. Many settlers lived, worked and often times died from harsh living conditions. I imagine that there was some good times also. I tend to reflect on this because my great- great- grandparents were first to winter in a new settlement in Paquetville, New Brunswick, Canada. This link is of a picture of the Catholic Church that my great-great-grandfather helped build. It is said that when renovations were made in the mid fifties his smoking pipe was discovered between the masonry walls. 

That is what we saw and did!


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