Saturday, March 15, 2014

Nova Scotia by Way of an Apology

So here’s a little background, Gentle Reader.  I have a friend named… let’s just call her, Carol.  She and her husband are going to be swinging north for a trip to Nova Scotia.  I said that I told her that I would find some campgrounds and some other attractions that I loved when I went and ship it all her way.  I made this commitment with the best of intentions; however, I am a shmoe and forgot.  I ran into her and she said, “HEY! Thanks for that campground information!"  


"You know, that campground information that you were going to get to me."

My brain started to scrape together and a realization hit me, “Carol, I’m a shmoe.”  I said.  “I’m so sorry.”

“Don’t worry – we already booked.” She said.

Carol, I may have failed you on finding campgrounds but I hope this list of jaw droppingly awesome things to see and do helps to make amends.  My brain is like a steel sieve these days.  I find that making lists are not only a way to organize my thoughts but also, in some circumstances, are vital to recalling anything at all.  This said, here is one such list.  These are, in my humble opinion, a representation of some of the most wonderful sights and experiences in Maine, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia.  While, ‘Results May Vary’, I have no doubt that you guys are going to fall in love with the area.

So, without further ado…


I’m really not going to do Maine justice here and that is a shame.  I know that you guys are passing through on your way north so I’ll do the same here.  Down East Maine is a place in the world that is near and dear to my heart.  There’s a rugged beauty here that is hard to duplicate in any other section of the world.  There are things in Maine that you just can’t find anywhere else.  One of those things is “The Lobster Pound”.  These are shacks where you pick the lobster you’re gonna devour, they put it into a pot of boiling seawater, and serve it to you with melted butter.  There are Lobster Pots all over the place.  This one…

Is right outside of Acadia National Park.  My best advice is to say that whenever you see a Lobster Pound, pull over, and eat a lobster.  This is good advice.    

Acadia National Park

If memory serves, you guys have been there already.  If you have then you know that it is worth a lifetime of other visits.  I could run on Jordan Pond, Thunder Hole, Bubbles Pond, and about the stark beauty of standing on top of Cadillac Mountain and looking out onto Frenchman Bay where the ether and the water and the land all conjoin in splendor & beauty at the creation stretched before you but the fact of the matter is, it is far more impacting to see it for yourselves.  Yes, that is infinitely better.

Between Bar Harbor, Maine and Yarmouth, Nova Scotia there used to be a ferry called the Bluenose.  The Bluenose was removed from service in the early eighties.  It was replaced by, “The Cat”, a giant hydrofoil ferry, which is no longer in service.  So, the long and the short of it is, currently, there is no ferry service between Maine and Yarmouth.  If you feel the burning desire to hop on a ferry while you are in Canada then this: is a pretty good resource. 

New Brunswick & the Bay of Fundy

The Bay of Fundy is host to some of the most prolific tides in the world.  You can check out the, “Tidal Bore” at anyplace were the tide go in or out.  Moncton, New Brunswick sticks out in my mind.  I was a kid but it was interesting seeing a two foot wall of water travel in at the rate of speed that it did.  To really get a scope of the tides one of the best places to be for both low & high tide has got to be the Hopewell Rocks.  Here is low tide…

And here is high tide…

I’ve never done the kayaks there but it is on my list.

Nova Scotia

One of the main things that I like about Nova Scotia is its authenticity.  The people of Nova Scotia are the real thing.  There is no processed quality or theme park atmosphere, to my memory, in this province and that is a wonderful thing.  You can visit a fishing village like Peggy’s Cove and know that it is actually a working fishing village and not some construct to pull in tourists.

 There is also the Peggy’s Point Lighthouse which is worth a look-see too…

If you are feeling particularly nautical then a day trip to Lunenburg, to see the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic.  It is closed right now due to major renovations; however they should be back in business by the late spring/early summer.  Fisheries, artifacts, a wooden boat school; yes, if you’re in the mood to whistle sea shanties then the Fisheries Museum is worth a look.

Perhaps your tastes are running a bit towards things piratical in nature?  Legend has it that there is a treasure buried there on Oak Island – perhaps, Captain Kidd’s, perhaps, Templar’s – who knows for sure?  Two brothers have bought a lot of property on the island now and are seriously searching.  If you would like to join the search then a two hour walk on Oak Island may be just what you need to do.  I was there 40 years ago and still remember it.  I’d love to take my girls back someday. 

Tours are limited but how often do you get the chance to tour a Treasure Island?  If ye be so inclined then ye’ll be wantin’ to click right here for further details:

If you head northward to Cape Brenton Island, Nova Scotia you will find the Cabot Trail and once you discover this you will always remember it (see:  The stark beauty that will surround you is, once more, better for you to behold than for me to fawn over.  The Cabot Trail is worth your time.

Not only are there trails to hike, whales to watch, and adventures to be had but there is also one of the greatest scenic road-trips in North America to take as you follow the Cabot Trail around the north end of the island…

Yeah, it’s something to see.

So, Carol.  There it is.  Some of my favorite things about Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Maine that I hope serve as an apology for that whole forgetting about the campground information thing.  I am truly looking forward to hearing of the adventures that you and your husband are about to have.

Talk soon!

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