Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Celebrating my 55th in Gaspe` (Day 5)

When I woke up, Ron was already sitting on the deck.  He took this shot of the sun coming up.. so beautiful!

By 5:10 am, this was my view, as Ron was enjoying his morning coffee, and book, on the deck

Today I turned 55 years old! *happy dance*.. and to celebrate Ron had booked us up on a whale watching tour in Gasp`e.  We had to be there 45 minutes before departure, and it was about 20 minutes from the motel.. so we left around 8:00 am.

Before we left, Ron surprised me with a gift and a card.  The card was from Ron (which was so sweet.. loved it), and the gift was a knife --made by Tyler.  So I now own a "one-of-a-kind" paring knife.  Love it too!  A one-of-a-kind knife to go along with a one-of-a-kind birthday in Gaspe πŸ’–

As we are aproaching the whale watching dock area, I am noticing a lot of white caps in the water.  I first I thought they were seagulls, but on closer inspection it turned out that they were indeed white caps.

 I was so glad that I remembered to put on my Sea-Bands.  Elastic wrist bands with pressure points knobs that line up on your wrists around the area where you find your pulse.  Helps for anxiety and nausea from rocking-movement (ie...sea sickness, car sickness)  These were bought when we were in Alberta (2009) when the mountains had me swaying and nausea was taking over. They are always in my purse.

It turned out, I did not need the wrist bands.. at 9 am, the tour that was supposed to go out at 9:15 was cancelled due to rough waters 😒

The tour guide was honest, and said he would not sell tickets until the captain gave the "ok" to go out.  The winds were at 20 mph with gusts upwards of 50 mph.

This is the boat we were supposed to be on.  I was very thankful that it was cancelled.  It did not look like much fun.. and these were waves in the little safe area where the boats are anchored.. what would have it been like an our or so from shore?

Here's a still picture of the boat. I could see me going overboard VERY easily!! Haha

The tour guide said there was room on the next tour (1 pm), and if the waves calmed down, and the tour goes ahead as planned, we could come back and join that tour.  The only difference is the 9:15 one was bi-lingual, and the 1 pm was only in French.

We thought we might as well hang around, since we had nothing else planned and we were really looking forward to seeing whales.

We went into Gaspe to find a grocery store for some "brunch"... and we find this!!

 All of our IGA's in Ontario are now Foodland. As soon as I walked in, it was like stepping back in time to my younger days when I worked in the deli department and I would be the one making pizzas just like these...and using the heat-wrap machine to seal the wrap around them.  Ahhh memories 😁

After buying some groceries, we headed back to the boat launch area.. where we sat for a hour or so watching the whitecaps..

At 1 pm, the captain announced that this whale tour was cancelled too 😭

Like the old saying goes..

If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans. πŸ˜„

All is not lost.. they do daily tours so we can go back in the morning and try for the 9:15 tour.

For the rest of the day, we relaxed around the motel.  It is so peaceful there!

Ron went exploring around the area, and I zoned out on my bed.  Look how close my bed was to the door. The bottom picture is my view when I layed down on the pillow.  How gorgeous is that pillow-view!!

Even though we did not get out on any whale watching tours.. I still had a wonderful 55th birthday!!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Lots of hiking in Perce (Day 4)

Woke up thinking it was around 6 am.

No even close!

4:20 am.. and the sun is coming up behind Perc`e Rock

We would be leaving Perc`e later on after hiking around ΓŽle-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-PercΓ© National Park , so we packed up the car, and signed out of Hotel de Nomandie

We ate breakfast at the only restaurant that was opened at 7 am.. then we parked the car down close to the dock at 8:30 am.  Boat tours leave the dock at 9 am.  If you want to just do the boat tour around the island, the cost is $70/person.. to go walk around the island is another $8.50/person.  The boat is scheduled to pick people back up off the island at noon, 2 pm, 3 pm, and final pick up was at 5 pm.

This was the first time for me being on a boat in a long time.. my anxiety was raised lol especially since you aren't issued a life-jacket, but are shown where they are in case they are needed.  Ron calmed my fears a wee bit when he pointed out how old and dry the jackets looked, meaning they hadn't been used in a long time.. but then I started wondering how useful they would be if they were needed (as they do look old and dry)

It was amazing to get so close to the rock that we had seen from our hotel room.  These pictures were taken when we were still a good distance from it.  The tour guide described this as a horse drinking water.  When we seem the far away images now, that is indeed what we see.

This other  end of the rock, to me,  looks like a snapping turtle's head

We walked the top half of the "Les Moussss" trail, and it joined on to the "Les Chemin Du Roy" trail, and that brought us back to the little village where we started (and where the boat dock is)

This hike took us over 5 miles around the island, and it allowed us to have a drink and snack when we were done, before leaving the island at 2pm

Random pictures from our hike ...

When we came along the edge of the island (by the word Perc`e in the tracking map a few pictures above) we started to see Gannets  flying around.  We were blown away by how many there were. Everyone just told us that the island is a great spot to view Gannets.

THEN.... we rounded another bend and the number of Gannets really took our breath away!!

There were literally THOUSANDS of Gannets on this part of the island!! The noise was so overwhleming, yet calming (like a white noise machine)

Such beautiful birds!!

This guy stared at me the whole time. Didn't move, just stared.  Haha

Around one of the bends we saw this little  harp seal, swimming on his back

It was around mile 4 (as shown on the tracking map posted earlier) when we were on our way down that side of the island, that we were very thankful for the park attendant we met at the beginning of our hike. (pictured earlier with the life-jackets above his head, he is wearing a hat, and glasses).  We pointed out to him the route we were going to be hiking, and he suggested we hike the top half first because the bottom half has a lot of stairs, and people find them easier coming down them, than going up them.  He was correct.  There were A LOT of stairs!! And with the small amount of rain that was landing on them, some of the stairs were a bit slippery.  It was supposed to be a sunny day, but we had some light rain fall on us that began just as we walked passed the Gannets.

As we finished getting down all the steps, my legs were starting to seize up on me.  I knew if I took a break, my legs would really give up and it would either take way longer for us to get back to the dock, or the slighter chance would be that I would have to be carried back on a stretcher.  I was going to do keep on pushing so that a stretcher was not an option.

I told Ron not to rush back, but for him to pcontinue watching the birds, and stop in at the old village homes along the trail.  I would just keep pushing along..and we would meet back at the dock. Trails are so well groomed, you cannot get lost.

I was soo happy, when I came over one of the hills and spotted this little village... that meant I was almost back to the dock, where I would wait for the boat to take us back to Perc`e.

Turned out that Ron wasn't too far behind me.. the light rain we had most of the day had become heavier.. so he didn't stop to take many pictures.. and the village homes that he was told he could go into, most of them still had padlocks on.

So we had a snack inside at the small restuarant, then waited on the dock for the 2 pm boat.  I was so glad to be back in our car around 2:30.. after walking over 5 miles around Perc`e yesterday, and hiking over 5 miles again today on the island, I was beat. My legs were glad to be not doing any work, as now Ron was driving us to our next hotel destination.. Cap des Rosiers.

On our way to the hotel, Ron stopped off at a couple of places, looking for relatives on his side of the family

We arrive at Cap des Rosiers,  around 6 pm.

The motel was small but cozy.  It was like a throwback to the 70's .. not updated much, but very clean.  The beds were not big and fancy, but they sure were comfortable!

Time to get a good night's sleep.. tomorrow is a big day!