Although the 32 hour trip from Fogo to St. John’s (well Long Pond in Conception Bay just around the corner) required too much motoring (yet again!!!) than we prefer, the abundance of whales on each cape made it all OK. At Baccalieu Tickle we drifted for 1,5 hours enjoying their antics and one cheeky one swam right under the boat.
Long Pond has a special history for us. From there we departed 8 years ago in our 37’ Pjotter for the daunting depression wrought passage to Reykjavik, Iceland. We have very fond memories of all of the people that supported in our preparation (and with weather input underway).
Once again, we received a warm welcome. Keith Noel took us for a tour of Signal Hill in St. John’s, where Marconi received the first transatlantic wireless transmission in 1901, and then on to Cape Spear, the Easternmost point of Canada. And then this lovely man treated us to all to a huge ice-cream. We also had a bit of a spring clean of the boat in preparation for the last stages of our journey.
We were very excited to arrive in St. Pierre, that little bit of France tucked in below Newfoundland and tied up with visions of steaming fresh bread, great piles of stinky cheese, slurpy sauces and many other yummy delights. But the weather was not kind to St. Pierre during our brief stay. It brought constant and very heavy rains and the fogs sashayed in and out of the circle around the island with rhythmic regularity. No long walks in the hills thus for us to work off our rich dinners. And the town of St. Pierre is not a lovely one on a grey day. We chugged out of the dark, dreary mist and set off on our last leg outside of our new-found home province of Nova Scotia.
A trip that started in the fog with a very unpleasant lumpy sea ended 24 hours later with a wonderful Nova Scotian welcome of sunny skies and soft seas. Out went the anchor and overboard we jumped into the 20 degree water in a lovely spot just behind Otter Island on the Great Bras D’Or channel.
Our first swim in the ocean since the Caribbean.
August 9th was a momentous day. After an early start we arrived in St. Peter’s Marina, on the south end of the Bras D’Or lakes. And here with slightly nervous bellies we made the call to check in officially as residents of Canada with the Canadian Border Services Agency. Two extremely professional and friendly officers joined us on board within an hour and after some paperwork and a detailed interview.
We have now officially arrived in Canada!
Our optimism was a little greater than our sense on our next leg.
From St. Peters we set out for the relatively short trip to Liscomb just 80 miles away, expecting a slow passage of about 15 hours as the forecast called for variable winds and seas of 1-2 meters. Unfortunately, the variable winds manifested themselves as a steady 20 knots on our nose and the shortest choppiest, most vomit inducing waves I remember ever experiencing. After 5 hours travelling an excruciating, bangy, bumpy 2 knots we limped into Arichat for the night.
Have had a lovely day of swimming in the sun we headed out to attempt the voyage to Liscomb again and on August 12th at the crack of dawn we wound on up the lovely river to dock at Liscombe Lodge. Liscombe Lodge also houses some pretty special memories from our previous voyages. In 2011 we holed up there to weather hurricane Earl who was raising devastating 20 meter waves on the open water outside. Once again Liscombe Lodge offered lovely protection and entertainment. Bike, hike, swim, repeat was the motto of our time there and we thoroughly enjoyed what we expect to be the last stop before our arrival in our new home in Halifax…