This week will take me from New Brunswick to PEI to Nova Scotia! It’ll be awesome seeing friends old and new and most of all, there will only be 1 province left til the finish line when this week is over.
Aug 15: 75km to Murray Beach Provincial Park. Said goodbye to Monica and Sharon this morning and made my way along the northern coast of New Brunswick. I could spot glimpses of PEI as I made my way across! Checked in before the sun went down at the highly recommended Murray Beach Provincial Park. It’s right on the coast with magnificent views.
Aug 16: 83km to Stratford, PEI. This is when I bumped into Frank and Craig (2 cycle tourers who started from Vancouver) as we were headed on the shuttle over the 12.9km Confederation Bridge! The rest of the day was just trying to catch up with these two older men, who were flying at 25+km/hour. Man, they were tough, didn’t need eating/peeing breaks. They just kept going, hoping for beer at the end! I arrived at Jason and Emily’s in time to settle in and prepare for busy rest days that they had planned for us!
Aug 17: 0km Today was a big day, Emily and I went to the Charlottetown airport to pick up Nick! He is joining me for the rest of the journey and we’ll fly home together. It was great timing too, because the weather was awful. Forecast: pouring rain all day! Jason and Nick went to get grab some lunch for us (Fresh oysters and lobster!). We rested and hung out the rest of the day, catching up and recharging.
Aug 18: 0km This was a touristy day, as we went to Cavendish, PEI to the Green Gables site, the resting place of L. Maud Montgomery as well as PEI National Park! Super lovely cliffs, more seafood and lighthouses everywhere! Capped off our great visit with dinner at Point Prim with Jason and Emily, the oldest lighthouse on PEI and a fantastic restaurant on the beach
Aug 19: 138km to Antigonish, NS. After a hearty breakfast of crepes made by Emily and Jason, we were on our way! We took the Confederation Trail through PEI all the way to the Wood Island Ferry Terminal. Fantastic trail! It is a bit longer than going via the TCH but there’s no traffic, no hills and lots of little benches and covered areas to rest. There was no time for us to rest though, as we had to make it to the ferry in time! We made it with time to spare but the ferry experienced delays as today was the Golden Cup and Saucer Parade (a PEI holiday) so the ferry didn’t leave until 40 minutes after its scheduled departure. The ferry is so neat, it has 3 levels for cars with ramps that move up and down so the terminals on both sides only have 1 level for exit and entry! Kind of hard to explain but very cool. We stopped in Pictou, NS for a Timmy’s run and ran into Mayor Joe who introduced himself to us! He also gave us a couple of Pictou pins, very cool! His brother was a bone marrow donor and wished us well on our journey. Getting to Antigonish was long and hilly, it was a pretty tough first day back in the saddle. Thankfully, our host Brian, cycled 20km out to the exit on the highway to meet us and led us back home with his son. A late lovely dinner with Brian and Tara later, we crashed as our heads hit the pillow.
Aug 20: 78km to Ceilidh Coastal Trail. We had breakfast and goodbyes with Brian and his family and made a fairly early start out in town. We stopped for a coffee with Martin, who I had heard about (and vice versa) through our Warmshowers hosts and mutual acquaintances. It was nice sharing the different things we learned and experiences in our cross-Canada trips. We may run into him again in North Sydney or St John’s! The riding today was much more mellow but hills are still hills. We made it to Cape Breton before 5pm and decided to get an early dinner so we could hit the trail before it got dark. The trail itself is awesome, but if you’re ever cycling this, enter at Troy, NS (8km after the bridge to Cape Breton) as the beginning is so rocky, you have to hike it! We heeded all suggestions and did the Troy path. As the sun was starting to set, we found a quiet hidden spot to pitch a tent and have a good sleep. Once the sun goes down before 9PM there’s nothing else to do!
Aug 21: 100km to Belle Cote, NS. We had another relatively early start and continued on the beautiful trail. We did switch to the road at Port Hood so we could make better time on the pavement. We stopped for lunch at the Mabou Farmer’s Market, battled a few hills until we got just outside Inverness. From there, it was mellow (even flat and fast sometimes!). We took Route 219 as it followed the coast and was quieter traffic-wise. We stopped in Whale Cove to take some photos and saw what must be the coolest cemetery in the world when someone pulled up behind us. Auntie Cecile! She knew we were coming and guessed we would be on this road and took this route on her way home! What a surprise! Re-energized, we raced onwards, hit the famous Cabot Trail and…overshot Auntie Cecile’s house! It was only by a few meters but we heard her yelling from her yard, turned around and went up her driveway. What a happy reunion! Obviously we are staying here for a little bit
Weekly Total: 474km
Grand Total: 7215km