Eight Days East: Into Cape Breton

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When we left Prince Edward Island, via the ferry this time, we stopped in Pictou, Nova Scotia, for the night. We stayed in a very charming bed and breakfast establishment called “The Evening Sail.” We had an upper room (named “Jacob’s Dory”) beneath sloping ceilings, decorated charmingly in a nautical theme to the last detail. If we’d planned to stay a few days, we would have used the completely outfitted kitchen. It was one of those places where you could imagine just moving in and staying for a long time. Since we were on our way to the next adventure, we went to a nearby camping lodge for a meal, and then climbed up to our room under the eaves to enjoy a good sleep. The next morning, many travellers met in the common dining area to enjoy a great breakfast and some pleasant conversation. The baked goods were delectable, and we were all given ziplock bags to fill and take along with us for later. That was such a lovely touch.

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From Pictou, we headed to the Canso Causeway to get over into Cape Breton for the next phase of our journey. Cape Breton was a veritable feast for the eyes…the Highlands, trailing down from the Appalachians, rose high and green above us, and below them, pristine stretches of lakes and rivers and an inland fjord, all edged with hills of vast pine forests. We stopped in Baddeck for lunch, and then set out in search of the Uisage Ban Falls hiking trail. After some back-road driving, we located our destination, and set off into the woods. It was a bit of a tricky hike, as the trail was rocky and filled with roots. I must have tripped a hundred times, all of them without the humiliation of a fall. A ways in, we found a couple in there, searching for their dog, who had become separated from them. I wonder still if they ever found him. The hike to the falls took about an hour and a half. The falls were beautiful, water cutting through the rock in two levels, spilling into a pool surrounded by boulders and rock at the bottom. My husband took a pounding shower under the last level of spilling water, and then we all went back down the trail to the entrance again. We spent the remainder of the afternoon driving the Cabot Trail, enjoying the panoramic views and the rugged beauty of Cape Breton. In the evening, we arrived in Louisbourg and had a great meal at a little seafood place before retiring for the evening. Our B & B was not nearly as charming as the one in Pictou, but it was adequate and clean. We were quite excited at the prospect of visiting the Fortress of Louisbourg the following morning before our final long stretch back to Halifax.

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