Some pictures of my trip around the gulf of St-Lawrence. For the largest display available, press F11 and click on the main image on the right. Use the left and right arrow keys to naviguate.
Atlantic Canada - Around the gulf of St-Lawrence
And here's the map (google map)
I rode about 2300km in six weeks. Most of the riding occured in the first three weeks. I think I was still averaging 100km a day after 18 days. Nearly a week was spent on the Nordik Express boat between Labrador and Rimouski. I was very lucky with the weather, especially considering the rain we had this summer. Only a handful of rainy days. Everything went so smooth, including replacing a broken stove pump and getting a new bank card after losing my wallet. I think I used all my karma points, and then some.
I particulary enjoy natural areas so the national parks were the best parts. The wildlife was abundant. I knew I'd see some but I never thought I could photograph so much and so close! The biggest highlights were the Cape Breton Highland park on the Cabot Trail and Gros Morne park in Newfoundland where I spent a full week is simply superlative! The short ride (15km one way) through the Tablelands is surreal. The whole west coast of Newfoundland is fantastic riding, "bike bliss" as I thought so often. Newfies are good natured folks. Labrador is great as well, so much that I'd like to go back there during iceberg season and ride to Cartwright.
Anticosti was a bit of a let down due to the Sépaq and illness. Sépaq manages the parks and reserve in Quebec and it's run by a bunch of a-holes. Not many people like them and it's no different on the island. everyone resident I talked to hates them over them. the Sépaq "owns" close to 2/3 of the island and most of the rest goes to private outfitters. I was there during hunting season and they simply don't want anyone without a gun (and a couple of grands) on their territory. I spent some time on the western part where there's no hunting and then I got sick. Almost three days in bed, then a couple more of not doing much. Too bad. I put fat tires just for the island. I had heard many things about the road conditions. It turns out the road is just fine. Perhaps the gravel is sharper than elsewhere but not bigger. Anyway, I didn't get a flat. I'd like to go back although with more time. Deer were introduced in the early 1900s and they strive. There's well over 100 000 of them. Other species were introduced as well, notably red and silver foxes.
For the techies, I rode a Surly LHT 52cm. I changed the saddle for a Brooks B17, the bar for a Nitto Noodle 46cm and added Paul Thumbies. The bike performed well above my expectations. It gives a little verticaly for comfort but is very rigid lateraly. Camera is Nikon D80 with three lenses ranging from 12 to 300mm. There's one photo I regret not taking. A dog was trotting towards me with its tongue hanging out. Very friendly dog. It followed me a little and the instant I saw him in my mirror, I thought it would make a great shot... but I got lazy and kept riding. Damn.
The best pleasant surprise was highway 4 in Nova Scotia. The "Little Cabot Trail" isn't too shabby either although this was my only full day of riding in the rain. It's nothing like the real Cabot Trail though. The worst part were some bad roads in New-Brunswick, especially around Shediac, and highway 6 in PEI, which connects two parts of the PEI national park. The road has no shoulders, it's hilly and traffic is quite moderate. The park itself is great though, and cyclists don't have to pay the entry fee.