Friday, 18 July 2014

 Thurs 17 July 2014 - Finally, the Rock!

On Wednesday the forecast is for clouds, some fog, and 40% chance of showers. Time to move on. I  put on my raingear and head out, up the "scenic route" of the Eastern Shore. I'm sure it's very scenic, but all I saw was white - while it wasn't raining, it was quite foggy and cold and I couldn't see much of anything, especially out over the water.

I had breakfast at the Fairmont Motel and Restaurant at Sheet Harbour, and I'm SURE it's the same motel I stayed at 30 years ago, when it was a "motel and marina", complete with a rickety 50 ft dock with a rowboat tied to it.

I fueled up at Sherbrooke ("Oh I wish I was in Sherbrooke now...") and got my first taste of a good East-coast accent. Then inland, and the fog disappeared and the weather became quite nice. Except for the wind, of course, that today was mainly behind me.

I had reserved a spot on the Newfoundland ferry for Thursday, and they insist that you show up 2 hours before sailing, so I wanted a motel close to North Sydney. I rode past the Bra d'Or lakes, and stopped at a lookout.

and there was this BIG bridge:

I'm sure glad I'm not crossing that one: you can see the whitecaps from here and with 30 knots blowing up that inlet, it would be a VERY scary rie!

Guess what, boys and girls - I DID have to cross that bridge. And it was certainly a white-knuckle ride. The wind was thankfully pretty constant, but the structures gave momentary protection so the wind dropped, then rose again as I travelled across.

Once across, I was 20 km or so from North Sydney and decided to take a nice, inexpensive hotel there on the highway.

Next morning, bright and early (or at least early ...), I headed for the ferry. The fog lifted as I got close, and the weather looked quite pleasant at the waiting area. I had a nice breakfast and before too long we were asked to board.

Now, how do you ensure a motorbike doesn't fall over and slide all over the place on a ferry going across open ocean? This is how:

Strap it down like King Kong - it's not going anywhere. And once again I was the smallest bike there. There were others from Ontario and Alberta, and even a guy in a beautiful Alpha-Romero.

Here is my last sighting of land on the south side - the next land I see will be Newfoundland.
And oh, look: another wind farm! They're indeed everywhere.

The trip across was quiet and uneventful, and I read my Kindle-book and watched the waves go by.

Finally we reached Newfoundland, and it looks pretty much like all the pictures you've seen:

We sheep go down the stairs when we're told to, unstrap the bikes and I'm off onto my ninth and final province. And just as I get to the hotel, the heavens open and it POURS with rain - I hope the weather's better tomorrow!

1 comment:

  1. Strap you down like king kong :) heeee MAS