7.16.10 Labrador back to Newfoundland

Blanc-Sablon Travel Blog

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7.16.10 Labrador back to Newfoundland

We had a perfect combination:
1. An afternoon ferry
2. Electricity
3. Wi-Fi
4. Laundry Room

All within a few feet of the Northern Lights Hotel. And there we parked, rested, and did laundry until time to head to our ferry. We were happy we’d explored until late the day before, because it was not grey and windy, a good day to rest.

Ferry at 6pm, arrival by 3:30 and it was still a little stressful in the ferry ticket office. Their system is inefficient to the likes of nothing I’ve seen since Spain. There’s no drive-thru ticket booth. They only take full payment when you check-in. The window is only open two hours before sailing, and there is only one lady in a tiny room.

The “road” that opened recently has caused increased traffic out of Labrador. It is a gravel road between Red Bay and Goosebay and they say it’s not very good. But the poor folks who arrive in Labrador within an hour of their departure, only to find their reservations cancelled, get priority for the next ferry with the pink cards, and everyone has to be in the correct line (red for reservations, green for non-reservations).

This ferry ticket line is an excellent time to talk with the interesting people around you, which makes time fly and is a great opportunity to meet the locals!

The ferry sailing was a bit rough with the windy seas. Our friend, the Navigator, told us we’d missed a pod of whales just out of port, then we missed the dolphins (Charles saw them though), and we all felt a bit squeamish by the time the 90 minute adventure ended. Everyone on the ferry though was very nice.

The travelers to Labrador are mostly from Newfoundland to salmon fish and very friendly. We are somewhat like little aliens up here with people looking at Ciao’s plates and asking incredulously, “Did you drive that all the way here from TEXAS?” I cannot tell if it is because they think Texas is a long way or if they’re just shocked that Ciao made it! Haha!

Unloading the ferry, they had us wait until the end and I realized that with the 2-lane highway, having RV’s exit at the end is better for traffic flow for many miles, since we’re slower. I prefer waiting, which saves me from having to pull over to let faster vehicles pass safely.

It was 8pm and we decided to find a place to stay for the night. The upper peninsula is dotted with tiny towns every 5-10 miles, but only a few campgrounds on the whole thing. We saw a youth center off the road and asked a Mom with the 10-12 year olds where a nearby campground might be. She said that the White Rock Walking Trail was a nice gravel area where many RV’s overnight and was just down the road. So we thanked them and gave the kids a gift of some Texas playing cards. They seemed pleased to be gifted something and as we drove onto the highway noted that a dozen kids were waving vigorously from their building steps. It gave us a nice feeling.
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