Friday, 18 December 2009

Proposed Route - Caribou, NS to St. John's

We're approaching the end of my proposed route for my cycle tour across Canada. So what's left? Just a trip along the coastline of Nova Scotia and a crossing of Newfoundland, that's all. Amazingly, that's still another 1,400 km to cycle!

After arriving in Nova Scotia from P.E.I, I'll ride through the towns of Pictou and New Glasgow and pick up the southern half of the Sunrise Trail. This tourist trail follows the scenic shoreline overlooking the Northumberland Strait. After Antigonish, the 'Highland Heart' of Nova Scotia, I'll continue on the Sunrise Trail towards Port Hawkesbury and cross, via the Canso Causeway, onto Cape Breton Island.

The Celtic theme continues when I'll take the Ceilidh Trail to Margaree Harbour, before connecting with the well known Cabot Trail which winds around the rocky splendour of Cape Breton's northern shore. The western and eastern sections closely follow the rugged coastline and should provide testing terrain, rewarded by spectacular views of the coastline and sea.

Elevation Profile

Quite a long ferry ride awaits me in North Sydney as it's a five to six hour trip to the island of Newfoundland. Nevertheless, my boat-trip will be a bit shorter than Giovanni Caboto's voyage which led to the 'discovery' of North America after his (supposed) landing on Newfoundland in 1497. (His name is anglicised to John Cabot, hence the Cabot references in this locale).

My 'landing' will be at Channel-Port aux Basques. From there, there's only one road across the island and fittingly, perhaps, it's the Trans-Canada Highway #1.

I'll take this highway, first heading north to Corner Brook and Deer Lake, from where I'll be able to view the Long Range and Annieopsquotch mountain ranges. After South Brook, Grand-Falls Windsor and Gander the road turns south and I'll pass through Terra Nova National Park and then cross onto the Avalon Peninsula, heading east towards my final destination...

And so, after 8,500 km riding; after admiring the scenery and cursing the terrain; after battling the elements, obviously; after undoubtedly experiencing a number of high-points and low-points and after collecting some memories to take home, I'll hope to finish my 2010 Cycle Tour Across Canada in St. John's, the province capital and oldest English-founded settlement in North America.

Suffice it to say, I'm rather looking forward to this trip now...but the anticipation is mixed with an equal measure of trepidation. Wish me luck!

Placename or POI Dir. Road Highway Name Next POI Total Km
Caribou NW #106 Trans-Canada Hwy 7 7,110

17 7,117

Sunrise Trail

New Glasgow E #4 Sunrise Trail 12 7,134
Sutherlands River NE #245 Shore Rd 41 7,146
Malignant Cove NE #337
18 7,187
Cape George Point

36 7,205
Antigonish E #4
56 7,241

Cape Breton Island

Port Hawkesbury N #19 Ceilidh Trail 93 7,297
Dunvegan N #219 Shore Rd 20 7,390

Cabot Trail

Margaree Harbour NE
Cabot Trail 96 7,410
Cape North

118 7,506
South Haven NE #105 Trans-Canada Hwy 39 7,624
North Sydney


Ferry: North Sydney to Channel-Port aux Basques (6 hrs)

Nova Scotia / Newfoundland & Labrador Province Border

Channel-Port aux Basques NW #1 Trans-Canada Hwy 138 7,663
St George's

80 7,801
Corner Brook

52 7,881
Deer Lake

130 7,933
South Brook

175 8,063

83 8,238
Terra Nova National Park

196 8,321

NE #90
8 8,517
Holyrood NE #60
45 8,525


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