2010 New England and Atlantic Canada travel blog

Bell Hist. Site 1 - the lighthouse at Baddeck in the bay...

Bell Hist. Site 2 - the grounds of the Alexander Graham Bell...

Bell Hist. Site 3 - the model of the Bell-Baldwin Hd-4

Bell Hist. Site 4 - the rear of the model HD-4 showing...

Bell Hist. Site 5 - what is left of the real Hd-4

Bell Hist. Site 6 - the inside of the real HD-4 reveals...

Bell Hist. Site 7 - some huge, blooming Hostas and daylilys on...

Cabot Trail 1

Cabot Trail 2

Cabot Trail 3

Cabot Trail 4 - downtown Cheticamp

Cabot Trail 5 - some more of Cheticamp

Cabot Trail 6

Cabot Trail 7

Cabot Trail 8

Cabot Trail 9

Cabot Trail 10

Cabot Trail 11

Cabot Trail 12

Cabot Trail 13

Cabot Trail 14 - our sole wildlife viewed on the trip, but...

Cabot Trail 15 - an Acadian flag painted on a lobster trap

Cabot Trail 16 - the ever present cyclists sharing the road with...

Cabot Trail 17 - building a new bridge

Cabot Trail 18 - the road down the mountain

Cabot Trail 19

Cabot Trail 20

Cabot Trail 21

Cabot Trail 22

Cabot Trail 23

Cabot Trail 24

Cabot Trail 25 - finally what we are looking for, and boy...

Cabot Trail 26 - a better look at his huge rack

Cabot Trail 27 - had to give you one more look

Cabot Trail 28 - Jim's Scarecrows

Cabot Trail 29 - some great detail

Cabot Trail 30 - and a lot of imagination

Cabot Trail 31 - they even play golf

Meat Cove Side Trip 1 - this is our view from the...

Meat Cove Side Trip 2 - the beach at John Cabot Park

Meat Cove Side Trip 3 - the beach in the other direction

Meat Cove Side Trip 4 - the bust of John Cabot at...

Meat Cove Side Trip 5 - the plaque explaining Cabot's role in...

Meat Cove Side Trip 6 - Meat Cove

Meat Cove Side Trip 7 - the restaurant at Meat Cove

Meat Cove Side Trip 8 - an overall view of Meat Cove...

Meat Cove Side Trip 9 - the cabins at Meat Cove

Meat Cove Side Trip 10 - the campground at Meat Cove

Meat Cove Side Trip 11 - a side view of the restaurant

Meat Cove Side Trip 12 - part of the five miles of...

Meat Cove Side Trip 13

Benjie Lake Trail 1 - this trail is on top of the...

Benjie Lake Trail 2 - hard to tell it here, but these...

Benjie Lake Trail 3 - lots of ferns up here

Benjie Lake Trail 4 - Lake Benjie

Benjie Lake Trail 5 - and not a moose to be found...

Benjie Lake Trail 6 - none here either

Benjie Lake Trail 7 - Doris said it was nice to be...

A lily in the bog on the Bog Trail

Louisburg Trip 1 - where the Great Bras d'Ors Channel meats St....

Louisburg Trip 2 - the bridge spanning the Great Bras d'Ors Channel

Louisburg Trip 3 - Doris' favorite colored rocks along the shoreline next...

Louisburg Trip 4 - the town of Louisburg as seen from the...

Louisburg Trip 5 - the entrance to the Fortress and the bridge...

Louisburg Trip 6 - the first view of the Louisburg Fortress from...

Louisburg Trip 7 - this is the gate to access the Fortress...

Louisburg Trip 8 - main street

Louisburg Trip 9 - one of the side streets

Louisburg Trip 10 - another side street

Louisburg Trip 11 - some of the buildings near the outer portion...

Louisburg Trip 12 - the military barracks, chapel and governor's quarters

Louisburg Trip 13 - now that's a real sawhorse - of course...

Louisburg Trip 14 - the chapel

Louisburg Trip 15 - with confessional

Louisburg Trip 16 - some tatting being done in one of the...

Louisburg Trip 17 - an early rotisserie - a clock mechanism is...

Louisburg Trip 18 - a dining room

Louisburg Trip 19 - a view of the Louisburg lighthouse across the...

Louisburg Trip 20 - a fisherman's home outside the gate - notice...

Louisburg Trip 21 - looking back at the Fortress

Louisburg Trip 22 - a view of the Fortress from Louisburg

Louisburg Trip 23 - flags seen on a building in Louisburg -...

Louisburg Trip 24 - this one added the US flag

Louisburg Trip 25 - Louisbirg street scenes

Louisburg Trip 26 - they like red

Louisburg Trip 27 - and fuchsia

Louisburg Trip 28 - the view of the inlet at St. Annes

Louisburg Trip 29 - more of the inlet

Louisburg Trip 30 - a view of the sand bar and ferry...

Marconi Hist Site 1 - this is a view of the cliffs...

Marconi Hist Site 2 - a small part of the town of...


It was a 125 mile drive, in the rain, from Antigonsh to Baddeck, NS. It didn't rain hard just enough to keep your windshield dirty. We are staying at Bras d'Or Lake Campground just outside of Baddeck. We have full hookups, good cell service and crappy satellite reception. This will be the last time we set up the sat dish until we return from Newfoundland as we are currently getting a 58 signal strength at best on a few transponders and the rest are a lot lower than that. On a perfect day (no clouds, pollution, or anything else between us) we can get ESPN, but not ESPN2, and the West coast network feeds - no USA or TNT. We are just too far North and East to get a good signal.

After arriving and getting set up on Friday we went into Baddeck to see the Alexander Graham Bell Historic Site where we learned a lot about the man. He was a lot more prolific inventor than we had thought. In addition to inventing the telephone, he was instrumental in Canada's first airplane flight, a hydrofoil speed boat, and probably least known, worked extensively on teaching the deaf how to speak using "visible speech" which his father had invented and he improved. Helen Keller was one of his students.

Saturday we drove the Cabot Trail around the North end of Cape Breton Island. This trail passes through the Cape Breton Highlands National Park and then passes though the North Cape before heading South and going through the national park again. Including the side trip to Meat Cove, we drove almost 250 miles, some of it outside the park, very bad road and the only wildlife we saw was a pair of bald eagles. While is was great to see them, we expected to see a lot more on this drive. The drive is beautiful though, going up and down the mountains while staying within sight of the ocean.

Sunday we spent the whole day researching where, what and when we were going in Newfoundand. This was necessary so we had some dates to reserve the ferry for the trip back and a to reserve couple of hard to get campsites.

Monday we headed back to the national Park to do some hiking in pursuit of the elusive moose. We took two trails, one short, the other long, and guess what? NO MOOSE!!! We then went to Pleasant Bay which is just as you come out of the park, driving clockwise, to see the Whale Interpretive Centre, which is where a good many whales are sighted each year and there are also several whale watching tours based out of there. Just before we reached Pleasant Bay, we were crossing the bridge over the MacIntosh River and noticed a crowd had stopped and were along the bridge - that means one thing - WILDLIFE!!! We stopped and sure enough, there was a magnificent bull moose about a half-mile down the river. He had an enormous rack and though I was able to get some decent pictures, they would have been even better had he been twice as close. So Doris got her moose fix and that only left one craving to be met - yep, we're talking lobster. When we checked into the campground the lady told us we would be unable to find lobster by the pound at a seafood market since lobster season was over. The only way to get lobster would be in a meal at a restaurant. Doris would much prefer to buy a larger lobster and have them boil or steam it and bring it home to eat. Well, anyway, we noticed a sign for a lobster pound on the way back after just leaving the park again and thought "what the heck, let’s try it." Sure enough they had the lobster by the pound so we got a two pounder and waited on them to boil it, then brought it back to the Mothership. Though it was two days after her birthday, Doris was literally a "Happy Camper!"

Tuesday we headed for Louisburg to see the Fortress of Louisburg National Historic Site . This is an incredible rebuilding of the old fortress in Louisburg that had been built in the early 1700s. They have only reconstructed, using the notes and data recovered from the French archives, 20% of the old fortress but it is impressive. They are still engaged in archeological digging on the site. The difference between a fort and a fortress is that a fort contains military forces while a fortress also inlcudes a civilian town behind the walls as well as the military forces. Next we went to the Marconi National Historic Site. Many don't know it but most of us that studied electronics know that Guglielmo Marconi was the father of the radio. His first trans-Atlantic radio transmission was made from the site where the historic site is now located. The area was selected for its line of sight to England (where the signal was received) and is on a steep bluff overlooking the ocean.

Wednesday and Thursday it rained, and rained, so we didn't do anything of note. We were only staying here the two extra days as we had to wait a couple of extra days to take the ferry to Newfoundland since I didn't make the reservations early enough to get the date we wanted. We took the opportunity to fine tune some of our Newfoundland plans so it wasn’t a total wash out.

Tomorrow, Friday, we head for Newfoundland via the North Sidney Ferry.

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