I rented a car with another St. John's visitor and we drove the "Irish Loop." This takes you from St. John's down to Cape Race, over past Trepassay, and then back up the west side of the Avalon Peninsula along St. Mary's Bay. The weather was overcast with occasional showers. More important, the wind was from the Northeast at about 15 to 20 knots. What a difference that made. As we drove down the "South Coast" (which is actually the East side of Newfoundland - go figure) the wave trains coming into the port cities were awesome. I was happy to be on land looking out rather than sailing by. In fact, when I got back to Reboot Randy, the skipper of the whale watching boat docked behind me, mentioned that the waves were 20 to 25 just outside St. John's harbor. Strangely Dennis, the other Wisconsin boat in the harbor, decided this was a good time to set off to the Azores. Wind in his face, heavy seas, go figure. Particularly since he has been here for almost a month.
Down near Cape Race we found the Loran C station. Loran is an older form of location finding that has been replaced on most boats by GPS. The decision was made to shut down the service in 2010. The US Loran "chains" were shut down in February. The joint Canadian - US chains were kept operational for a couple of more months because of treaty obligations but were finally shut down about 3 weeks ago. I wanted to go up to the building and the gates were open but the "Restricted Area - No Trespassing" signs kind of put me off.
The peninsula is quite rural, We finally stopped at about 2 pm for lunch. Our choice of resturant was easy. It was the first we had seen in 30 km. It was a bed and breakfast and quite inexpensive. When they brought out the dishes there was enough food on my plate to serve a family of four. Quite a great feed.
I am starting to cycle up for my return south. I expect my package to arrive from the States in the next couple of days and then I will be looking for a weather window to start back down.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Irish Loop - Newfoundland
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