Newfoundland, is a large Canadian island off the east coast of the North American mainland, and the most populous part of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. The province’s official name was also “Newfoundland” until 2001, when its name was changed to “Newfoundland and Labrador”. The population is about 500,000 made up of English, Irish, some French and Scottish. The main industry is fishing. The main interest for going there is the icebergs, the 10,000 whales that go there in the Spring, to many sea birds to count and the many quaint fishing villages.
The roads are terrible with pot holes that toss you vehicle around and if you hit the big ones it is like driving off a cliff. The moose (Bill Winkle and his budies) are a pest and out number the citizens and are a real danger if you drive at night. There are also herds of Caribou but seem to be smarter and stay off the roads most of the time. The weather is cool, rainy and windy most of the time. The history of the island is made up of 500 years of fighting over the Cody fishing industry by the British and French. The Indians and the Vikings were there first.
World War Two left a lot of sunken ships in the cold clear waters. The icebergs that float by from Greenland, some 15,000 a year, had one in the pack which the Titanic ran into and then sank. They come in all sizes and shapes and you spend a lot of time driving into coves and along the eastern and northers shore line to find them. The main items on the menu are Cod and Chips or Chips and Cod all of which are deep fried. The locals carry an abundance of winter fat on the mid section and signify the quality of their diet.
The land is covered with pond and lakes and the ground is soggy. The wet bogs are everywhere and if you plan on hiking the many trails be prepared to get wet or stuck. The land scape in the north is solid trees, a mix of pines and Birch and Ash and Aspen, some 21 species that grow so thick you cannot walk through the forest landscape. There are lots of wild berries along the trails.
The residents of the island are friendly and can tell interring fishing stories. The little town are clean with homes spread out over the hillsides. Saint John’s is the biggest city and is on the easter side. Once you get out of Saint John’s you are alone and restaurants and places to stay are few. I was lucky to find a few very good ones.
One of my plans was to take picture at night but the wind made that effort impossible.
With the camera on the tripod the wind vibrated the camera and lens so much I was forced to take images at the highest suitable shutter speed and IO’s in the 640 to 1250 range with f-stops at 5.6 or 8.0. Using the 400mm lens was difficult at best. There were a few days when the wind was non existant. When the heavy fog and rain intervened I had to cover my camera with plastic ZipLoc bags with a hole for the lens to stick out one end. Crude but it worked for me.
The building are weathered and colorful but the homes are clean and well cared for. I had a lot of fun exploring towns and bays but the driving wore me out. I got lost a lot and the road maps are almost useful. I wish I had taken a Garman GPS to save some time from getting stuck on roads that seem to go nowhere. I made a lot of U-turns.
I could make a novel out of this but it is a blog and you don’t need to read 200 pages here. Here are a few images I captured in my 14 days in Eastern Newfoundland. Western Newfoundland will be another adventure.
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