Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Labrador and Port Au Choix, NL

We had mixed feelings about Labrador. It was stark, beautiful, cold, barren, rugged all rolled into one.

We left Newfoundland thru the ferry at St. Barbe. The ship is the Apollo and it makes 5 trips per day. The price was not bad - $53 for motorhome and tow (senior rate). The trip is about an hour and a half. During the trip we saw dolphins and a whale.

This is a whale - use your imagination!

We exited the ferry in the Quebec town of Blanc Sablon. We drove about 10 km. to the sign that said welcome to Labrador. There is only one paved road in the southern shore, which is about 50 miles from ferry to Red Bay.

We drove thru a couple of little towns and found a great boondocking spot on a hill over looking the ocean. We had a very curious animal near our RV. Can anyone out there tell me the name of this animal?

The first day was beautiful so after parking we took off for the Point Amour Lighthouse (the 2nd tallest lighthouse in Canada). We climbed the 109 feet to the top for a great view of the coastline.

Along the route to the lighthouse was the Maritime Archaic Burial Mound, the earliest known funeral monument in North America. It marks the burial place of an Indian child who died about 7500 years ago.

The little towns are located in the valleys and have very few trees.

Sunday the weather turned cold and rainy. This didn’t stop us from venturing out to Red Bay, a national historic site. This small fishing village was once one of the largest Basque whale fishing settlements in the 16th century. There are two museums in this town – one housing a 16th century whaling boat and the other museum explaining the whaling industry and displaying artifacts found in the town. It was a good day to spend in museums. From Red Bay on the road is gravel. We drove a little ways on this road but since the day was rainy and the road was muddy we didn’t go far.

Monday we departed Labrador and returned to Newfoundland. We drove to Port Au Choix, which is the site of four ancient cultures, and saw the visitors center, Point Riche Lighthouse, Phillips Garden (an area that is being excavated) and a caribou.

Today we are in Cow Head – it’s like coming home! It has been rainy all day and is suppose to rain for 2 more days. We get one good day to about 4 bad ones.