Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Corner Brook, Newfoundland–part 1

My next to the last stop in Newfoundland was in Corner Brook.  I stayed at Kinsmen Prince Edward Park in August 10 – 14. 

While there I took several day trips.  During one of these trips, I went to Blow Me Down Provincial Park.  I enjoyed eating lunch by the coast.


While there I noticed something interesting, stairs in the cliff.  I later learned these were called Governor’s stairs.  I hadn’t planned on going up the cliff to the overlook because my knee was bothering me.  But I had to check it out.nl_corner_brook_blowmedown_pp2

It was interesting and when I got to the top of the stairs I decided to keep going up to the lookout.  Unfortunately my camera battery died and I had not brought my backpack, which had my spare.nl_corner_brook_blowmedown_pp3

Not far from Blow Me Down Provincial Park, I did some hiking in Lark Harbor.  I started on the Bottle Cove Hiking Trail and joined one of the other trails in the area for a while.  Bottle Cove Trail starts on a boardwalk in the cove and then goes up a small cliff.  




Where I thought the trail ended, I realized that it just got a bit more primitive and went on and finally meet up with another trail.nl_corner_brook_bottlecove4


After carefully walking around the rock on the cliff above and up and around a few more scary places. I came to an intersection and saw an easier way to get to this part of the trail.  On the way back I took the easy way!nl_corner_brook_bottlecove6

Since I like rocks and water so much I really enjoyed this coastal trail.nl_corner_brook_bottlecove7


I spotted this Indian pipe which is not a flower, but a fungus close to the end of the trail. 

While it was a bit out of the way, I wanted to go back to the Port au Port peninsula to go on a hike I had heard about.  I will post pics about 2 hikes I took that day on my next blog , but wanted to post a couple of pictures here.  The scenery along the peninsula was great – small towns, cliffs, mountains….

IMG_1480 (1024x768)IMG_1570 (1024x768)The picture above was in a quarry or something similar.  The red truck has wheels that 6 – 8 feet tall.  They are changing the huge tire and have to use a crane on the white truck to do this.  I had seen these huge trucks before, but never thought about how they change the tires.  Just one of those weird things I found interesting!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Boone Bay, Newfoundland

I am interrupting this late blog for a live update!! Pleinguy asked if I was still in Canada and I thought I would let everyone know.  I left Newfoundland August 20 and toured a bit through Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick. I left Canada and made it back to the States last Sunday (Sept. 20).   After I  finish my postings from Newfoundland (probably another 2 or 3 blogs), I will do a Newfoundland summary and thoughts blog.  I really enjoyed it and can see going back in several years. 

Back to the regularly scheduled program (or blog)-

I had originally planned on staying somewhere else, but after hearing some good comments about The Water’s Edge RV park in Boone Bay (Next to Woody Point as some maps don’t list Boone Bay), I decided to stay there August 6 – 9. 

The campground itself was just ok, but the view was nice, as the name says it was on the water’s edge.

A nice sunset, taken from my RV spot --


A yacht cruising the bay in front of my RV--nl_boone_bay_yacht

While here the main thing that I wanted to do was to visit the Tablelands in Gros Morne National Park.  This area is one of the few places where you can walk on the Earth’s mantle!  A very long time ago Africa and North America collided and pushed some of the earths’ mantle above ground.  Below is a piece of the earth’s mantle.  The rock is really a dark grey/green, but once it gets to air, the outside of the rock turns rust colored.  

nl_boone_bay_gros_morne_tablelands_mantleSerpentine rock -


I decided to take one of the ranger lead walks in this area so I could learn about what I was seeing.  I enjoyed it, but unfortunately I have forgotten 95% of what the naturalist said!

The earth’s mantle --


There is still a little bit of snow left in the hills, we were told this is very unusual, but as you can see by what everyone is wearing we are still experiencing cold days.nl_boone_bay_gros_morne_tablelands2


After I left the area, I realized I should have taken one of my feet shot (typically relaxing somewhere).  So I went back the next day and I can now say that not only have I stood and walked on the earth’s mantle but I have also sat on the earth’s mantle!nl_boone_bay_gros_morne_tablelands4

I also went to Trout River a couple of times, once just walking the boardwalk and enjoying some scallops.  The other time, I did a small hike on the Eastern Point Trail.   The trail went up the side of a cliff and then followed the cliffs edge for a while.  A nice easy hike with good views and purple fringed orchids!


I also went to Lobster Cove Lighthouse.  The lighthouse was ok, but I really enjoyed the trails and the beach.


Me relaxing at the beach --nl_boone_bay_lobster_cove5

Another Purple-Fringed Orchid, but much thicker than the one I saw at Eastern Point Trail --nl_boone_bay_lobster_cove3

One afternoon/evening I looked out my RV and noticed something.  Sun Dogs!!  I had seen them before but these were really nice.

Sun dogs are the 2 bright spots on either side of the sun.  They are caused by how the light interacts with ice crystals.  nl_boone_bay_sundogs

In addition to sun dogs, there was also a Circumzenithal arc (CZA), along with a halo.  The CZA is sometimes called the smile in the sky.  It kind of looks like an upside down rainbow.  Ok, I admit, I knew Sun dogs, but I had to look on the internet for Circumzenithal arc!!

nl_boone_bay_sundogs andcrv

From here, I headed to Corner Brook for a few days. 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Cowhead, Newfoundland–part 3

One day, I hiked the Western Pond Trail to the pond and went on a boat tour.  It is a bit different from most boat trips as you had to hike 2.7 km to get to the boat dock.  But it was a nice hike.   


I had heard about a wild fruit called a Bake-Apple that is found in Newfoundland and below is my first view of one.nl_cowhead_gros_morne_westernbrookpond_4bakeapple

Below is a Fox Sparrow (I think) - nl_cowhead_gros_morne_westernbrookpond1

More interesting flowers and plants --nl_cowhead_gros_morne_westernbrookpond6



A view of where I am headed --nl_cowhead_gros_morne_westernbrookpond2


The Western Brook Pond was at one time a fjord.  But on this ever-changing earth it is now considered a pond because there is some land that now blocks it from the ocean and it is now fresh water.  It is surrounded by steep rock cliffs (some 2000 feet high) and was carved by glaciers a long time ago.nl_cowhead_gros_morne_westernbrookpond8







Many people consider the Western Pond Trail and boat trip the highlight to their Newfoundland trip.  While I enjoyed it, it was not as exciting as I had thought it would be. Maybe just too much hype about it made me think it would be so much more.  A very crowded boat did not help much either!

From Cowhead, I headed South to Boone Bay, which is on the southern side of Gros Morne National Park.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Cowhead, Newfoundland–part 2

I stayed at the Seabreeze B&B and RV park while in Cowhead.  The location is great, it is on a bay and about 1/2 mile down the street is the Cowhead Lighthouse trail.  I hiked the trail when I was here in early June, but since it is a nice hike I did it again.  Once again, I really enjoyed the scenic Spring Beach which is a side trail from the lighthouse trail. This time I scrambled over the rocks and went further down the beach than before.



Below is a shot of me taking a rest after a nice morning walk.  What a way to start the day!nl_cowhead_morning_walk

Several mornings it was foggy, but this particular morning it was eerily foggy.  The next 2 pictures were taken from across the road from my RV.  nl_cowhead_rvpark


Another interesting morning shot - nl_cowhead_rvpark3

One day, I went back to Port Aux Choix National Historic Site.  I was here in early June, but I  didn’t hike as much as I wanted to.  So, I started with the Dorset Trail.  It was a great trail, it went over limestone barrens, over boggy areas, through the forest and then down to the ocean and then back!





One of the signs mentioned to look for fossils, I saw several including the one below --nl_cowhead_dorset_trail_fossil

Once again, the plants in the limestone barrens intrigue me – Tiny little white flowers on this very interesting little plant.nl_cowhead_dorset_trail_port_au_choix2




While hiking, I saw several caribou.  In the picture below you can see one on the trail and several on the hill in the background.  The one on the trail led me down the trail (as I like to think) before he got tired of me following and left the trail.  nl_cowhead_dorset_trail5




This is a historical park because the Dorset Paleo-eskimos lived here from 2100 to 1200 years ago.  They were people who occupied artic Canada and Greenland and extended their range to Northern Newfoundland.  They were seal hunters and below is a wire sculpture just outside of the Philips Garden area which is where the remains of  2 large settlements have been found and explored. 

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I figured this was a great place to stop, relax and have a snack!nl_cowhead_dorset_trail12

This plant was not on the trail, but near the lighthouse (which I blogged about on my June visit). 


After a couple of hikes, I was ready for lunch.  I had already decided that I would go back to the same restaurant I went to earlier and get some more shrimp.  Shrimp is a big business in this area and a large shrimp plant is just across the street from The Anchor CafĂ©.  I had a salad with shrimp and house dressing – so good!!!

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