Across Canada - 2005 travel blog

The 14 Km Confederation Bridge from the PEI side

Multi-coloured grain fields outside Summerside

Storage sheds on the wharf at French River

A mussel farm (the buoys in the background)

Fish boats and sheds at French River

Sand dunes at PEI National Park

Sunset in Charlottetown

Endless potato fields and red soil

Our original plans were not to go to PEI - but we were almost on top of the Confederation Bridge so thought "why not?" This is the joy of being on the road - you can change plans in the blink of an eye. At 14 Km long it is one of the longest bridges in the world. Half way across you can begin to see the shore of PEI and the almost terra cotta coloured soil. We started out on the south shore of PEI at Linkletter Provincial Park. Our campsite was huge, right on the water with the red sandy beach, red water, red soil roadways and a view of the bridge (gotta love those provincial parks!). There was a couple from Nanaimo parked beside us so we spent a long evening beside a campfire on the beach, with the wind blowing off the water, swapping travel stories. That is as much as part of traveling as the scenery we see.

PEI closed down their railway in 1989 and converted the rail lines into the Confederation Trail that runs for 270 Km across the island. We took our bikes and rode 60 Km of it one day - about 20 Km more than we are comfortable riding unfortunately! - most of it in the woods so we did not get a great sense of "PEI" though it was a great trail. The next day we drove up to "Anne's Land" to the PEI National Park and walked for 8 Km along this stretch of red sand beach bordered with sand dunes and Marram grass (whose roots can grow down 3 meters and keep the sand in place). Other than at the access point to the beach, there was not a soul to disturb the serenity of the place.

PEI is also made up of small villages, comprised of 100+ year old houses, churches and fields and fields of grain or potatoes. It is interesting that both PEI and New Brunswick have such stunning scenery - half of it agricultural and half of it beach (or fishing related). Many of the villages are accessed by bridges that cross rivers and beside each bridge are brightly coloured storage sheds, fishing boats and in the waters are dozens to hundreds of buoys holding up the chains where they seed mussels. We HAD to go out for a traditional Lobster Supper (in North Rustico). For $28.95 we were served seafood chowder, salad, rolls, a huge platter of mussels, a 1-lb lobster AND pie. We waddled out of there and swore never to eat again.

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