So…this is the penultimate…(that means next to last) post from Canuckistan.
What’s that you say…we’re supposed to be across this side of the border for awhile longer?
Yup…that was the original plan…but lemme do some ‘splainin’ to ya.
Tis true…we were supposed to be up here until Aug 19…but on our trip today we got to talking. After our bust at the first waterfall of the day…we were headed over to our second waterfall…and Connie sez…I’m ready to go home…this country is just a wasteland. Neil agreed with her…and said…ya’ know…if we’re not having fun anymore here then it is time to go home. They talked about it a bit…nobody asked me or Kara…our ‘pinions don’t matter…but since they’re RVers and plans are by definition done in Jello…they can always just change them.
So what they talked about was that being in Canuckistan is getting old…we been here 2 months now…nothing really major but a whole buncha li’l things. Now there are plenty of nice towns and cities up here…that are pretty much the same as places down in the USA…but once you get out in da boonies a bit…it gets bad a lot quicker than it does in the USA boonies. For example…grocery stores are pretty much a wasteland…very few of the things we normally buy are available up here in the same form…and while you can find coffee, bread, and pretty much whatever you need…’cept for grits, they just don’t exist up here, nope, never heard of em…the selection and variety just ain’t what we are used to. Second…there’s the pub scene. Just about every pub in ‘Murica has food…but about 3/4 of those up here are drinking establishments only…and that just ain’t our style. I’m not sayin’ they don’t exist…but good ones are few and far between. The good ones are…well…outstanding…but the number of those is pretty slim. Then let’s add in the beer selection at the store…first off it’s god awful expensive…a 12 pack of Rickard’s Red…which is basically the equivalent of Yuengling…is about $25CN or $20US…down in the US we pay about $17 for a 24 pack. Wine’s the same…and let’s just forget about ordering a cocktail in the pub…even the rockgut stuff is $7 to $8 US a drink and they pour in milliliters up here so’s you’re only getting a half of a drink for your money…it takes ordering a double to approximate a US style cocktail and that’s $14 to $16…crazy I tellya.
So we’re tired of bad roads, bad (mostly) food although there have been a few exceptions like the 1026 Bar and Grill over in Campbelton last night which was really outstanding, less than fully satisfactory campgrounds…and most importantly the lack of a smartphone. AT&T plans provide calling and text for us up here…but data is pretty much nonexistent…and you don’t realize how important data is until you’re out on the road and need to look up an address or find a restaurant or whatever and just can’t do it. If you didn’t do it before you left the rig…then it’s not happening.
They talked about what’s left…basically the Gaspe peninsula up in French speaking Quebec…and neither of them was really all that enamored of any of the stuff they were going to do…so they said the heck with it…let’s see if we can change things ‘round a bit. When we got back from today’s drive…which included another bust at Pokesaw Rock that I’ll talk ‘bout in a bit…we called our first destination in Maine to see if we could check in early. We asked for this Saturday…Aug 11…which is when we’re due to leave Dalhousie, the got a cancellation just yesterday for the week on our site so we’re in…except we can’t get there until Sunday…so we made a reservation at…I kid you not…My Brother’s Place Campground in Houlton Maine right across the border. Houlton is about 200 miles from Dalhousie and Medway where we’ll be at Katahdin Shadows Campground right near Katahdin Mountain which is the northern end of the Appalachian Trail for 11 days is only another 60ish miles on Sunday…we’ll go to Mass in Houlton then hit the road for a noonish arrival in Medway.
With that reservation early arrival in place…we checked to see if we could stay in Dalhousie another night…we didn’t think we would be able to but the worst they can do is say no…which they did. So we made the reservation at Houlton, called and cancelled our week in Gaspe and overnight in Roumiski…and all is ready now. We’ll be back in the USA Saturday evening then continue the remainder of the late summer/fall as previously planned.
Last evening…we headed out to Campbelton for dinner…our first stop was at Taps…which according to the Yelp reviews had both food and beers. On arrival…no food…so we ordered a beer and told the bartender we would be heading out for some food after that. About the time we were done…the 3rd or 4th Canuck to come up to the bar and order to carry out to the patio…they each asked us where we were from and we gave them the standard story about being full timer RVers staying in Fort Myers for six months and doing the other six months on the road…and sure enough two more beers that we really didn’t want at that point as we were hungry showed up on his tab…it’s not sociable to refuse free beers…so we wandered out on the patio and talked to him and a couple of his buddies for most of an hour. On the way out…we stopped by the bar and sent him a beer on our tab…then we headed over to the 1026 Bar and Grill which is located in the Days Inn hotel…but it was actually outstanding. We ordered another pint each of Alexander Keith’s Red Amber Ale…which was what we were drinking at Taps. Connie ordered mussels…but they were out so she ordered the smoked salmon plate, and once she had a bite was glad the mussels were out. There was smoked salmon, pickled onions, dill cream cheese, and the largest capers you’ve ever seen along with some toasted bread to spread it all on. Neil tried a bit of her smoked salmon…and actually liked it…he would order smoked salmon again although he doesn’t care for grilled salmon at all. He had some bacon wrapped scallops which were also delicious. After that…they were still a bit hungry so they ordered one order of onion rings…which came with honey as a dip. While neither of them had ever even considered honey on onion rings…it was there so they tried it…and it was really, really good. The sweet goes with the hot and salty of the onion rings and is the perfect sauce for them.
Wednesday morning we were up early and after coffee and waffles…frozen as real ones are too hard for breakfast…we headed out about 0900 for a 4 stop trip of about 1250 miles or so…most south of Dalhousie along the coast.
First stop was the Jaquet River Gorge overlook…this is actually pronounced Jack just like the name in American English…and while it wasn’t your classical gorge it was pretty scenic.
This is the…Visitor Center I guess you would call it although we were the only ones there…we stood outside the chain across the driveway for awhile trying to decide if it was actually where we were suppose to be or a private residence…finally decided it was OK since there were a dozen or so picnic tables scattered ‘round.
Some shots of the gorge looking from the deck on the back side of the building above.
Connie got a wider angle shot…her camera doesn’t have a very long lens not because Neil won’t buy her one but because she doesn’t want the extra weight of a longer one. Unfortunately…there were some flagpoles in the shot that the parks people rudely put right in front of the scenery…so Neil had to remove them. No…not with an ax but with a piece of software he has named SnapHeal…or Magic People Remover© as he calls it. You can’t tell it…but there used to be three flagpoles and associated flags right in the middle portion of this shot. I dunno how it works…it’s just magic. Seriously…if you take pictures…and need to remove flags, people, picnic tables, unsightly dumpsters or anything like that from them…spend the $50 it takes for this program…but you’ll need a Mac to use it as they don’t write for Windows at Skylum.com. It’s frickin’ magic I tellya.
Next up…we headed to Tetagouche Falls which turned out to be our first bust of the day…it looked like a really good waterfall but at the top where the viewpoint was the trees and shrubs had grown up so much ya just could see almost nuttin. There was supposed to be a path to the bottom…which would have made a good photo from what we could see…but it was farther than Neil wanted to hike down on his own as Connie’s hip told her she wasn’t going down and back up. This is the best shot we could get…believe it or not this is about a 45 or 50 foot drop but this shot is looking almost straight down on top of it. Bummer.
With that done; we headed off for Pabineau Falls…which turned out to be pretty nice.
While Neil crawled around on the rocks and got the shots above…Connie stayed at the top again and took a whole bunch of artsy-fartsy shots…some with the leaves in focus and the waterfall blurred out a bit…and some the other way around. This was our favorite one in the bunch…so Neil did a little post processing on it and we decided it really pops…just about our fave shot of the day.
Our final stop…was at Pokesaw Rock…which is a large flat topped rock about 100 yards off shore and about 60 yards long, 30 wide, and 120 feet or so high. We got there…and the only place to park had a hand drawn sign that said “pay fee at shack”…which we weren’t about to do as it wasn’t much to look at. So we turned around and headed home…having our lunch we bought at the Irving convenience store on the way…a pack of 2 bite cocoanut macaroons, bag of potato chips, small bag of beef jerky, and a Coke original with sugar in it…yeah, it’s not all that healthy but it sure tasted good. After we got home and finished up all the reservation stuff I talked about above…we wandered up and had a scoop of maple walnut ice cream from the campground store…and that was our day.
We’ll have one more Fun Stuff© day here on Friday…tomorrow it’s laundry on the rainy day…then hit the road back to our side of the border.