Long Cove, Port Medway

7 06 2015

Today we walked from Port Medway to Long Cove.

bayjpg

It was good to feel the warmth of the sun after a cold, wet week.

bay-2
There is a little harbour at the end of the dirt road and Long Cove cutting inland.

cove
Wire lobster traps were stacked up on the dock.

dock-jpg
As well as the older styled wooden pots.

pots
Our picnic spot had to be back at the limestone rocks,

rocks
with amazing views.

rocks2

Apple and cherry blossom, plus wild azalea and bunch berry flowers, helped to add colour to our hike.apple

These tiger swallowtail butterflies enjoyed the heat of the track.

swallowtail

Advertisements




Fortress of Louisbourg, Nova Scotia

7 10 2013

Louisbourg, on the north east coast of Nova Scotia is an amazing visit and was the highlight of our trip to Cape Breton, last week.

You get an idea of the size of the town as you approach from across the bay.

Fpng

 

This is the Frederic gate, the access to the town from the sea. You can see it in the photo above too.

Aa

This was how the harbour looked in 1730, with ships coming from France, Quebec, New England and the Caribbean.

Aa1png

We walked to the Kings Bastion Barracks and Governors Apartments.

Ab1

This part of the building was the barracks.

Ab2

There we met a soldier who told us his sad tale. He had been enlisted into the army from the streets of Brest. He was promised a secure job, with good pay, food, a bed to sleep in and a roof over his head. All this in an exciting new country. He grabbed this opportunity and signed up for 6 years. After a stormy crossing he arrived in Canada and found that the reality was not what he’d hoped for.

AbpngHe had to stand on guard at this guard house for 24 hours – non stop, with no sleep. Anyone caught sleeping was punished. Usually made to side astride a wooden horse, with weights attached to their feet. Beds were shared by 3 soldiers, 2 sleeping while the other was on duty.

The pay was good, 9 livres a month, but after money was taken for his food and bed, he was left with only 1 1/2 livres a month. What was there to do, but drink that away to console himself. This poor soldier was only 30 years old, but looked much older. He did not think that he’d ever marry as the few women in the town preferred fishermen who made a lot of money and could support them.

As for getting out of the army, that did not seem possible as he had no money and was already in debt, so would be forced to sign up for another 6 years. It was all very depressing, yet he still managed to give us a smile. I hope he was not punished for speaking to us!

Acpng

The Fortress – a Fort is manned solely by military but a Fortress is a fortified town with civilians, like any other town – was founded by the French,  in 1713.

The main reason for this settlement  was the cod fishing on the Grand Banks. Cod fishing was so lucrative that it brought in more money in one year than all the years of fur trading!

The fish was salted and laid on stages to dry, before being exported.

The harbour was well defended, but on the landward side, there was little defence. The story goes that a British officer was being held prisoner at Louisbourg, but was allowed to roam free, as was the custom. He saw all the weaknesses in the landward side and when released back to New England told them how to attack. His information was actioned and led to the first fall of Louisbourg in 1745. This officer was deemed not to be a ‘gentleman’ for telling and was expelled from  the army.

Three years later the town was restored to the French, but was besieged a second time, in exactly the same manner as the first! The French had learnt nothing from the first attack!

E1png

Opposite the Frederic gate is the Hotel de la Marine. This was where the soldiers, sailors and townspeople spent their money on food drink and entertainment.

There we had a very good meal of pea soup, followed by haddock and vegetables, served by costumed servers. We ate from pewter dishes and had only a pewter spoon to eat with.

B1

A juniper branch was used above the signs for ale houses and eating places as the towns people could not read.

B2apng

Further along the waterfront is the home of the Commissaire Ordonnateur. This was the person who kept all the accounts, paid the colony’s bills, compiled statistical accounts, and had a hand in local justice. Francois Bigot was the Commissaire Ordonnateur from 1739 to 1745 and was the sole resident of this huge house with 6 female servants. The system allowed  Bigot to misuse funds and build up his own fortune. This was his eventual downfall. He was tried, confiscated of all his property and exiled from France, in 1763.

Ac

This was the home of Joseph Lartigue. He came to Louisbourg with the first settlers, from Newfoundland. He was a fisherman and trader, but because he could read and write, he became the town magistrate. Part of the house was used as a courtroom.

Lartigue and his wife had 12 children and several servants in this house and were thought to be well off in their day.

C1

The Dauphin Gate was the main land entrance to the town. It was manned around the clock by an officer and thirty soldiers.

D2

The  Royal coat of arms sat above the arch.
D1png

You can walk around the ruined part of the town and see where the hospital, convent, mass graves, and breweries used to be.

Parks Canada has certainly done an impressive job of reconstructing Louisbourg and anyone who gets the chance should pay it a visit.

 





A Typical Morning in Lunenburg

16 08 2013

Lunenburg has a population of just over 2,000, but in the summer months it fills up with visitors.

We enjoy a walk around the town in the morning, before the tourists are on the streets.

This is Monday morning, looking down to the Railway Wharf.

A

And across to the Bluenose Golf Course.

A1png

This is the same view on Wednesday morning.A1a

This is the Martha Seabury schooner, which was built here in Lunenburg.

https://queensincanada.wordpress.com/2012/08/13/the-launch-of-the-martha-seabury-schooner-at-lunenburg/

A3png

During the summer months, this old fishing boat, The Cape Rouge, sits at the wharf. It is used in the filming of the TV series, Haven.

A4

The Adams and Knickle building is undergoing renovation work.

A5png

The booths are open ready for trips on the ocean.

A6png

The nearest boat does harbour tours, the Eastern Points goes  whale watching and the Eastern Star, sailing trips.

https://queensincanada.wordpress.com/2009/09/07/a-sail-on-the-eastern-star-at-lunenburg/

A7

The waterfront restaurants are open for breakfast.

A8png

But no one wanted to sit outside on Wednesday.

A8apng

The horses are ready to take tourists on a tour of the old town.

A9

And the Fisheries Museum will open to educate visitors on the history and past life of Lunenburg.

A9a

There is also a cruise ship in the harbour.

A9a1

The Lagniappe, registered in the Marshall Islands, which you could charter for $110,000 per week!!!

A9a2png

The little shed beside the foundry is crooked and worn.

A9bpng

The latest boat at the foundry wharf. Am I back in Dundee – it is called the Discovery?

A9c

Looking across to Lunenburg from the golf course road,

A9dpng

to the colourful town and the Fisheries Museum.

A9epng

But there was no view on Wednesday.

Even this osprey didn’t seem to see us.A9g

He flew just above our heads.

A9hpng

Then back into the nest with the young.

A9jpng

There’s always something to see, walking around Lunenburg.





Spring is here at last – well maybe!

31 03 2013

This Easter week-end has marked the beginning of some warmer weather here in Nova Scotia. Yesterday we went to Kejimkujik Seaside, which is a National Park.

You can see our walk on Googlemaps.

http://goo.gl/maps/ND7gJ

We started out by walking the rocky shore  along Boyd’s Cove and MacLeod’s Cove.A

There is a rough track in places

Bpg

The sea was very blue – I did not touch up this photo.

Gjpg

Parts of the coastal track had been washed away the last time we walked here. Another path has been cut, a bit further from the shore, through the trees.

Djpg

And the  boardwalk has been repaired in places or totally renewed, like this section.

E

Unlike Europe, the ‘history’ here is not very old. This is the ruin of the house of Hugh Cameron, a shepherd on St Catherine’s River Farm in the early 1900’s. But sheep farming here was a harsh existence and the land was eventually given to the Federal Government and became the Seaside Adjunct of the Kejimkujik National Park.

F

Yesterday, the bay was full of lobster boats, the better weather a pleasant change for these fishermen, who are only allowed to fish here on this part of the shore during the winter months! It has been a tough time for them – probably harder than sheep farming!

Hjpg

In my last post about this park, I added this photo of a wrecked boat that we spotted sitting high and dry on Little Hope Island.

Boat-on-island-2

There used to be a concrete lighthouse on the island until just after Hurricane Juan in 2003, when it collapsed.

This amazing photo was taken by Jeff Tutty of Hunts Point, Nova Scotia in August 2003 and the wrecked boat was already there!

LighthouseLittleHopeLight

Seemingly, the crew of the Lady Helen  fell asleep!!

lighthousesTheLadyHelen1

I didn’t have my tele-photo lens with me yesterday, but the boat has gone and the rocky island is hardly visible above the water.

We continued round to the sandy beach

Ijpg

and walked as far as is possible.Beach-1

Then it was back to the car – a total of 14 km.

The forecast for this week is back to freezing most days, so maybe Spring isn’t here yet.

If you’d like to see Kejimkujik in the summer, with the birds and flowers, you can look at the blogs I wrote in 2009.

https://queensincanada.wordpress.com/2009/07/09/kejimkujik-national-park-part-1/

https://queensincanada.wordpress.com/2009/07/10/kejimkujik-part-2/





Tiare Taporo, Lunenburg

28 10 2012

In July of this year, I was walking along the path at the Foundry in Lunenburg, when I noticed this ship. The first day, it did not have the masts, but later in the week it looked like this. I wondered who would be converting a fishing boat to a sailing ship. The name on the side was Tiare Taporo, Avatiu. Avatiu is in the Cook Islands.

I went home to do some research.


The original Tiare Tapore was one of the very last ships to trade under sail in the Cook Islands and the South Pacific. You can read about her here.

http://pacificschooners.com/index.php/the-original-qtiare-taporoq.html

Pacific Schooners Limited, through the travels of the Picton Castle, became aware of the need for a passenger, cargo vessel, to go between the Cook Islands and the South Pacific. Having a vessel that could use wind power, would help save money on diesel.

So, where did this new Tiare Taporo come from?

Two fishing boats have been sitting in Lunenburg Harbour for some time. You will see them in the centre of this foggy photo I took. They are the green, black and mustard scallop draggers, the Zebroid and Primo, that belonged to Clearwater.

It was decide to convert the Zebroid into a new sailing, cargo vessel.

I found this excellent photo on Flickr, taken by Dennis Jarvis.

 

The Zebroid was taken to the dry dock, for work to begin on her hull. I did see her there, but didn’t realise that she was the ship I later saw at the Foundry. She looks much bigger out of the water.

 

Her sister ship, the Primo, still sits in her green paint.

I have read on the Tiare Taporo site, that the plan is for the ship to

  • carry 200 to 300 tons of break-bulk cargo including; frozen fish, fuel transport, freight, orders, govt supplies and trade goods.
  •  carry doctors and dentists as often as possible to provide specialist care for outer islanders.
  • take up to 30 passengers, 8 professional crew and 6 apprentices in comfortable cabins and bunks.
  • provide  a dependable regularly scheduled service to the islands.

The new, white, Tiare Taporo sits in the main harbour just now, alongside the Picton Castle, which is just about to head off on its next voyage to the South Pacific.

I have just looked at the last photos I took, before the Picton Castle went off for the summer and see that the Tiare Taporo was in the background.

I wonder when she will head off for her new life?





Shark Week in Lockeport, Nova Scotia

17 08 2012

This was meant to be a fishing Blog telling about our trips fishing for mackerel and striped bass.

However, last week-end we headed to Lockeport to fish for mackerel, to find that the local Sea Derby was in progress. We fished for a short time at our usual pier, but nothing was biting, so we went over to the Government wharf to see what was being brought in.

Several fishing boats were waiting to land their catch. This boat above has a long look-out platform for spotting sword fish.

I liked the name of her.

It also has these seats up high for spotting the fish.

Some cod had been landed and were being weighed and measured. There doesn’t seem to be a limit to the size taken, but there is a maximum of 10 rule. I remember when we used to catch huge cod on the West Coast of Scotland in the 70’s, it’s good to see they are returning.

Mackerel are plentiful at this time of the year. We caught 14 one day at Lunenburg and 8 at Lockeport in a very short time.

The Governement body, the Department of Fisheries, was present to check what was being landed.

The shark had to be winched from the boats up into a shed.

Where they were weighed, and measured and the contents of their stomachs examined.

This one weighed about 350lb!

I had never seen a shark up close before. These were Blue Sharks – what a beautiful colour!

We had a very exciting day and might go fishing at the Sea Derby next year.

This Great White Shark was caught in a fisherman’s trap, last year, in the Bay of Fundy. I have taken the photograph from a CBC page. It was a baby female, 3 metres long and weighing 272 Kg.

This was taken from the CBC report of August 17th, 2011.

Steve Campana, head of the Canadian Shark Research Laboratory, said the shark was likely looking for fish when it got trapped.”They’re interested in fish and perhaps small seals and dolphins. It’s very unusual for a great white to attack a person and usually when they do, it’s because they look up and see a surfer on a surfboard and it resembles a seal, which is one of their favourite prey,” said Campana.

He pointed out that in the 1930s there was a shark attack in the area that sunk a boat but left the boaters unharmed. “They’re not interested in people.”

“Canada is within the range of great white habitat, so they’ve undoubtedly been coming up here since time immemorial,” he said. “It’s just that the population of great whites used to be much larger, at least 10 times larger, just 30 years ago than it is now.”

But this Mako, caught in  2004 was a giant!

It was caught by Jamie Doucette, when he was fishing in the Annual Shark Scramble at Yarmouth, NS.

The shark weighed in at an astonishing 1,082 pounds and was a Canadian record.

I’m really not sure what I’d do if I caught any of these huge fish.

There is another Shark Derby on 25th August at the Seafest at Brooklyn, Liverpool. We’ll go along and see if there are any records caught there.