Atlantic Maritimes &
Denis Kertz, ©2007
I left at 7:10.† I was
in a good location for getting to the ferry to
After the causeway there was a rotary and I took the exit
into Pictou.† A cursory ride through town
didnít reveal a breakfast place so I returned to the rotary where there was a
Tim Hortonís and had breakfast there.†
From the rotary it was another 5K to the Caribou Harbor Ferry.† Unfortunately, the next ferry wasnít until
11:15 so I had time to kill.† Had I
gotten up a half hour earlier I could have made the 8:00 ferry.† Instead I watched a fairly regular stream of
fishing boats make their way into the harbor.†
These boats were very maneuverable and they needed to be in the
congested harbor.† One boat had a
sizeable catch of herring and was waiting to unload its catch for shipment to
The ferry arrived on time and we left on time after a full
load of trucks and cars with a few left behind to wait for the next ferry.† It was an uneventful ride of a little over an
hour into a fairly chilly headwind.† The
I was the first ďvehicleĒ off the ferry.† I debated hanging back to let all the traffic
past but kept going instead.† Apparently
most of the traffic headed east because I saw little traffic heading toward
The route was mostly flat but there were a lot of long,
gentle ups and downs.† This was rural,
farming country with a lot of round bales in the fields.† There were also signs for
I rode the rest of the way to
When I was done eating it was 6:30 and time to find a place
to stay.† There was a combo
The big news of the day was the loonie, the Canadian dollar,
reached parity with the US dollar, the first time since the mid-1970s.† This wasnít good news for me since it meant
my US dollars were less valuable in
I was up and gone by 7:00.†
I rode across the bridge and turned left on to
After breakfast I rode around the historic city.† There was a nice Victoria Park on the
I got away from the library around 11:00 and rode up
Finally, I headed out until I reached a service station
where I stopped for my 2nd breakfast.† Then I left for real around noon. †Originally, I was going to head to the north
shore but the guy at the bike shop said the south coast to the
When I reached the coast and headed west the wind was a helping tailwind on a flat route and cycling was nice.† Another 20K brought me to Victoria-by-the-Sea, a small charming spot on the coast with a population of 120.† It had a couple places to stay which interested me.† I wanted to make this a relatively easy day and, with the possibility of rain overnight and into the morning, I was interested in indoor accommodation.
The first place I checked out, a hotel converted to a B&B, wanted $90.† The 2nd place, Ruthís B&B, was a little more laid back.† The regular rate was $85 but the elderly guy offered it for $70.† I checked into my room, on the 3rd floor which I had to myself with my own bathroom across the hall.† Later, I set up my tent in the back yard to dry it out from the overnight condensation and walked around town.† For dinner, I had fish & chips at the Ruthieís Pub & Eatery.
I was up and ready for breakfast at 7:30, served by Vince and Ruth.† It was a ham and cheese omelet with toast.† I was the only guest up that early so I got to learn more about the area.† Vince & Ruth were an elderly couple with 3 grandkids.† They were running their B&B to make some extra money but werenít trying to run it as a major business.
I left at 8:30, just when the other guests were showing up for breakfast.† It was an overcast morning with some wind from the west, which meant I had some headwind.† Just around the corner was 116 that continued along the coast and let me avoid the Trans Canada.† 116 had a short, 2K stretch of packed gravel and was paved otherwise.† Near Tryon, 116 ended and I picked up 10 the rest of the way until I had to get on the Trans Canada for a short distance to the bridge.† I stopped in Borden-Carleton, the town right before the bridge, after 22K for my 2nd breakfast.
I got dropped off at the visitor center on the other end and was welcomed by a couple of mosquitoes.† The visitor center had free Internet access so I used that to catch up on some news.† I finally took off again around noon.† I took the first exit off the Trans Canada to pick up 955 along the coast with some nice views of the marshland.† I had to get back on the main highway for a short stretch and then took 950 along the coast.† Both 955 and 950 were low traffic roads but 955 was more scenic.
Once again I had to ride the main highway for a couple
kilometers before I picked up 133 the rest of the way to Shediac.† On a normal day I would most likely have made
I reach Shediac about 5:30 and decided to try for a motel since the Bears were playing the Cowboys on Sunday night football.† I found a motel for $65 that had a free breakfast so it wasnít too bad.† It was interesting that my room had a hardwood floor in contrast to the usual carpeting.† The other good thing about the motel was it was next to a Chinese restaurant with a buffet and I took advantage of that.
Later I tried to stay up for the football game which didnít start until 9:00 local time.† However, that was about my usual bedtime and I just couldnít stay awake and fell asleep.† I woke up just in time for the 3rd quarter, seeing that I hadnít missed much by missing the first half of a 3-3 tie.† The 3rd quarter was good but then the game got out of hand early in the 4th quarter so I went to sleep for good.
The motel had a pretty good continental breakfast and I took advantage.† They had the small, single serving cereal boxes and I had 4 of them.† I put the first 2 in a soup bowl container and poured the ďmilkĒ only to discover that the white substance was sugar.† Fortunately, when I poured real milk most of the sugar settled to the bottom so I didnít waste much cereal.† On my second bowl, I got it right.† The cereal with a banana and some toast made for a fairly decent breakfast.
I left at 8:30 and rode down the main street to the
intersection with 935.† I needed to catch
134 allowed me to avoid the main highway and it was
fine.† What wasnít so fine was the brisk
headwind, similar to yesterdayís wind.†
The road was flat but the wind compensated as I rode through a rural
area.† When I reached
We took a bike trail along the
After my 2nd breakfast I rode on but 112 wasnít
in the greatest condition and the headwind seemed stronger.† It took me to Petiticodia where I stopped for
a snack.† Then a little jaunt out of town
brought me to 890 that would take me all the way to
When I reached
The campground turned out to be only about a half mile away on a side road right by the restaurant.† It cost me $25 and was OK and certainly cheaper than a motel.
It seemed to warm up some overnight and there was fog when I woke up sometime during the early morning but the fog was all gone when I got up.† I rode back to town to a restaurant near the visitor center.† It looked like it was closed and I was apparently the first customer.† I had the pancakes and they were fairly large, larger than anything else on the trip so far.
After breakfast I rode through downtown to see the murals.†
After 45K I crossed the river and rode into
However, as 100 neared
This part of
At the visitor center I got the distressing news that my
plan to re-enter the
I had to wander around through a maze of streets to get out of town and was not helped by the afternoon rush traffic.† I finally stopped at the far edge of town at the Fundy Bay Motel where I got a decent, basic room for $45.† After cleaning up, I walked up the street to eat at a little takeout place that was closed earlier when I rode by.† It turned out that the owner/cook teaches and opens the place after school.† He was also recovering from a knee operation so his kitchen wasnít fully functional.† He could only make me 2 cheeseburgers which were fine.
While waiting for my food I considered my travel options now
that my preferred route via
This was all complicated by the weather forecast that predicted light rain on Thursday and rain on Friday.† A single day of rain would be fine since I would just use that as a rest day but two days of rain was too much.
There didnít appear to be any breakfast place around in the morning and there was a question whether there would be anything before St. George so I ate a banana before leaving around 7:30.† The road I was on joined 1 shortly and I was resigned to having to take 1 all the way to St. Stephens, 100K away, where I could cross the border.
What I wasnít resigned to was the condition of the shoulder.† I expected a good shoulder on an expressway.† It started out that way and then the rumbles appeared.† At times the shoulder had a 2-level makeup from different paving and sometimes the outer, older level was reasonably rideable and at times too bumpy.† The rumbles, of course, were cut in the smooth section of the latest paving.
So I had to ride on the white line at times which wasnít so bad because the road was 4-lane with not nearly enough traffic for 4 lanes.† Then the rumbles started disappearing and reappearing and the shoulder had some smooth sections and some rough sections.† Conditions kept changing every few kilometers.† After 30K the road gave up on pretending to need to be a 4-lane divided highway and it became a 2-lane undivided highway and the shoulder became a nice wide, smooth shoulder like I expected.† 1 was also a gently rolling highway through heavily forested land so it was easy pedaling but monotonous scenery.
There were no breakfast opportunities along the way and I was resigned to either a powdered milk cereal breakfast or riding all 58K to St. George.† Then after 38K there was a motel/restaurant along the road at Pocologan, a spot along a bay with just a couple motels.† I had good pancakes and enjoyed some conversation and banter with 2 sisters who were running the restaurant.
Re-fortified I continued on to St. George and took the exit
to the visitor center.† There the
attendant re-confirmed that the ferry to
So I started riding south from St. George to the ferry.† A road sign said 12K to the ferry.† The ferry ran every 30 minutes so I guessed the next one I could make was 1:30 and it looked like I could just make it so I pushed.† The road was curvy and I kept looking for the ferry around each curve as I approached 12K but I just got more curves in the road.† Finally I resigned myself to the next ferry when it was 1:30 and no ferry landing was in sight.† Two minutes later I reached the ferry landing and the ferry was still there.† As soon as I rolled on the ferry pushed off.† The ferry gods were with me and, although I didnít know it, not done with me yet.
It was a beautiful ferry ride to
When I got off the ferry I rode until the first convenience store where I stopped for a cold drink.† I decided I would just start asking folks if they knew of any alternatives to the seasonal ferry.† I was surprised when the woman at the store seemed to have a possibility in mind.† She went in back to confer with her colleague. †I was then flabbergasted to learn that the seasonal ferry was making some special runs today and the woman was trying to find out the schedule.† It was uncertain but they learned there was another run sometime between 3:00 and 4:00.
I was pumped at the news.† It was 2:00 and 14K to the ferry terminal and I figured I could make that in an hour.† What I hadnít figured on was how hilly the road was but I pushed pretty hard.† There were some nice harbor views along the coastal route that I would have enjoyed more with more time but I was not about to complain to the ferry gods.
I reached the ferry terminal, which was just a flat spot
along the coast, by 3:00 just as the ferry was pulling in.† It looked like perfect timing but the ferry had
to wait for the special cargo that was the reason for the special runs.† So I ended up waiting about an hour until 2
semis showed up, but never complaining, just pinching myself that I was
magically going to end up on
The ferry was very small.†
It had just enough room for one of the semis.† I rolled on and paid a whopping $3 for the
ride whereas I was certainly prepared to pay someone $50 to get me to either
By this time it was close to 5:00 so I rode to one of the
two restaurants on the island Ė Lupine Lodge.†
I expected resort prices but I got good fish & chips (haddock) for
$10, probably the best fish & chips value of the trip.† The lodge was on a bit of a hill and there
was a great view across the bay of a salmon fish farm, Eastport, and
After eating I started riding to the
Later on the news I saw a prediction of rain over night.† This was abnormally warm day for this time of
the year and some cooler air was moving in.†
I was actually glad to hear that it would be cooling off because today
was warmer than I liked for riding.†
Nevertheless, I wasnít complaining, just pinching myself that I was on
Copyright Denis Kertz, 2007. All rights reserved.