Nova Scotia Road Trip! - 2002

59 N OVA S COTIA Day 15 - Another perfectly marvelous day. We left PEI on the NFL Ferry at 8:30 AM We arrived on time by accident actually, but it turned out to be just right. The Northumberland Strait was calm and the sky was lovely and blue with no clouds. Very little breeze too. So we had a wonderful breakfast for a cheap price and were in Pictou, NS, in 75 minutes. We also broke my cardinal rule and got some Cow ’ s Ice Cream on board. We had read about it in PEI but never found a store. So we had ice cream about 9:30 AM. It really was quite delicious too! As we got off the ferry, we turned east and started up the west side of NS to reach the Cabot Trail and Cape Breton Highlands National Park. This island looks totally different from PEI — much more forested, higher hills (even mountains), less fussy lawns, but still neat as pins. We did not see potatoes growing, but there is obviously agriculture going on here. Along the coast where we were driving, it seemed that cattle, sheep, and fishing were the most prevalent businesses besides tourism. The drive was along a rather rough two-lane highway with several places where construction was proceeding on the roads. But the distances are not long, so we moved along very well anyhow. We stopped in Inverness for lunch at a surprising little spot called the Casual Gourmet. It was a bit off the highway, and was quite small, but it had a terrific view of the ocean. The food was delicious with a slightly Middle Eastern touch. The desserts were super: Kay had gingerbread with raisin sauce and Lois had blueberry cobbler with ice cream. Too good for sure! C APE B RETON H IGHLANDS N ATIONAL P ARK We kept on driving east and north and finally reached the National Park. We stopped at the Visitors Center and talked with a cute Acadian lady ranger. She told us that we definitely wanted to do the Skyline Trail today since the weather is so spectacular. Her advice was to take the hike and then go on to Pleasant Bay for a place to spend the night. She advised against trying to do the Bog Trail or Benjie ’ s Lake trail at this time. So, being the great respecters of rangers that we are, we took her advice and went straight to the trailhead for Skyline. And what an excellent piece of advice that turned out to be. She had told us that we did not need hiking boots because the trail is so very well maintained and is basically flat too. We jumped out of the car and made for the trailhead immediately. We had walked about 6 minutes when we had some second thoughts about whether we were on the right part of the trail. However, fortunately, we met some folks coming towards us and they assured us that we were correct and that we would not be able to miss the sharp left turn we were watching for. At that time we were walking along a log road and knew we were not supposed to be on that very long.

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