Lively Music, Festivals and Feasts
Trip Start Jun 01, 2011
36Trip End Sep 15, 2011
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We booked a boat ride at Western Brook Pond, a natural fjord in the heart of Gros Morne National Park. There is a little hike into the “pond” of about 3 kms and from there we boarded our boat, Westbrook II. It is about a 3 hr boat trip into the fjord and back (16 km stretch one-way) and what a beauty of a day we had. Sunny and about 22 degrees, one of the best days we have had the whole trip
On the way back to our camp site we saw a sign advertising a Moose Supper at the church in St. Paul’s. We decided that nothing could be better than roast moose, mashed potatoes, veggies, stuffing and home made bread. To top it all off we even had a choice of home made pie for dessert and all for just $8.00. Yum-Yum! So in we went, paid our money, got our plate of food and then sat down at a table with 2 other ladies already seated. One we recognized from the boat trip (she obviously saw the sign too) and the other, as it turned out, was Reverend Jean (RJ) - the pastor for the area.
Well we got to talkin’ and lo and behold RJ asked if I was related to Joyce up in St. Anthony's. Of course we told her 'yes' and then explained how we had just met Joyce and her family for the first time a few days earlier. Then she thought about it for a minute and asked if we also were also related to the Seaward’s in Catalina, which of course we are too
I tell ya, its a small world here in Newfoundland as everyone knows someone you know or are related to. Some locals say you can’t go anywhere without meeting a cousin or two!
So back to our campsite we went and got talking to some fellow campers, Aubry and Jean, who invited us over for a campfire and marshmallow roast. We chatted about here, there, and everywhere and it turns out they live fairly close to my cousin, Bonnie, whom we will be visiting with shortly.
Next day when we got up we met our other neighbours, Roger and Daphne, who told us they were going into Cow Head that evening to go to the theatre. It was a local play called Ed and Ed’s B & B (part of the Gros Morne Theatre Festival). So we decided to go into town and get tickets too as we wanted to check out some of the local performances while we are here in Newfoundland.
Both couples extended invitations for us to visit their homes when we got to their part of the province. It was a lovely offer, which we graciously accepted; however we’ll just have to see if we can fit it into our travels
Later that night, all 6 of us decided to go up to the Church Lobster Dinner in town and then on to the theatre afterwards. You see, Cow Head was having it Lobsterfest this particular weekend and we wanted Lobster, so for $25 you could get a lobster and all you can eat salad bar, home made bread and, of course, a slice of home made pie as well. The volunteers at the church do a wonderful job setting everything up, cooking up the meals, serving, and then cleaning up at the end. Its a lot of work, but everyone seems to enjoy the day.
They had a salad bar, but one we have never seen before as this salad bar was all put into a boat in the middle of the church hall, filled with ice, and the salads all around. Very unique, to say the least. Everything was homemade and there was plenty to go around. The lobster dinner was delicious.
And you’ll never guess who was there? Yep, RJ.
We all agreed that it was a nice meal, but we had no time to linger as the show awaited us. And what a fun little production it was. It was a full-on comedy that had all of us in tears from laughing so hard. We really enjoyed it and when it was over it was time to go home. But wait a minute, this is Lobsterfest weekend and there was live music at the hockey rink bandshell. So instead of going home, off we went to hear some good old fashioned Newfoundland music.
The hockey rink, as it turns out, is an outdoor rink - so there we were sitting outside listening to music and it was only about 5 degrees out. Brrrr. It reminded me of being in an indoor rink back in Aurora in the dead of winter. It was cold, but we had fun, a few dances and ice cold beer.
Next morning, 8 AM, teeing off in the cold at Gros Morne Golf Club
Back to the RV to pack up and take off again for our next destination, Lomond Camp ground, still in Gros Morne - just further south. There we got a beautiful spot too overlooking the water and rolling mountain tops. We got set up and went for a hike to Stanleyville. The hike was only about 2 km each way, but it was up one side of the mountain and back down the other so it was a little more strenuous. It turns out Stanleyville was an old logging town in the 1800’s that is now deserted and only accessible by boat or foot. It was kinda cool to see, but the hike itself was the highlight with lots of evidence of moose and bear on the little path.
The next morning at 7 AM I was outside waiting for Sharon as we were going to go down to the showers and doesn’t a caribou come trotting down the road
Have you ever seen billion year old rocks before? We hadn’t that we know of until today that is. We are at the Tablelands, part of the Long Range Mountains and going on a hiking tour with one of the Park Rangers, Kevin. He told us how Newfoundland was, at one time, about where Bermuda is today, but the earth shifted, continents collided over millions of years and here we are in the Atlantic ocean 2000 miles north of where we once were. It was really interesting to go on this hike, as he told us about all of the flora and fauna for the area. Too bad Newfoundland didn’t stay further south - could’ve had some warmer weather!
We stopped next near Marble Mountain at the Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage Tree - a 417 year old carved cedar pole, depicting historic scenes and events of Newfoundland and Labrador. It was carved by local craftsmen who were commissioned by the Government as a tribute to their culture. The funny thing was that the tree came all the way over from British Columbia. Go figure!