Thursday, August 21, 2014

WWW Tour - Here Comes the Sun - Day 5

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Little darling, it's been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it's been here

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Little darling, the smiles returning to the faces
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been here

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes

George Harrison ~ The Beatles ~ 1969

So the day starts in the same locations as Day 2 did. We ate 2 doors down last night at ... at ... I forgot the name of the place, but it was a sports bar that had a ton of types of beer on tap. They even offered a sampler, which included 6 small mugs of your selected beers. I opted for one large glass, no thinking involved. For food, I had the Bangers and Mash, a typical British Isle meal of sausage and mashed potatoes. This also came with sauerkraut with bacon in it. Really good.

Morning, almost a repeat of Monday morning. Breakfast at the Snow Queen, however this time Walt gathered up the keys and I think he turned them in. We had to figure out a new route to ride the coast down to Yarmouth for the ferry. Oh the one big change the sun was out in it's full glory.

Maps indicated RT 7 was the easiest.

What a Diamond in the Ruff RT 7 turned out to be. Sweeping and rolling road thru farmland with virtually no traffic. This turned out to be the second best road we were to ride, second only to the Cabot Trail. Put some large views of water and cliffs, it might beat out the CT. We rode this right into Halifax.




Before we get along of course I picked up a DD.

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As we hit the coast line Rt 7 bends to the right and follows the sea.

We  came across this rusty bucket not to far after we hit the coast line.

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Even Bill and Walt stopped.

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We got separated again so I did my DD duty

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In MUSQUODOBOIT Harbour I found this old train depot. What a name, not even sure I could begin to pronounce it. (Spelling it was hard enough)

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Right down the road is Chezzwtcook, a double double.

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Having been separated since the rust bucket, I rode to the end of the route, however Bill and Walt stopped just outside of Halifax at an ice cream place. I waited at the cemetery, while they had tea and crumpets About 2 hours later we made contact and they were south of Halifax and said they would wait.

So after taking a few wrong turns in Halifax, avoiding the drivers (they were terrible) and waiting on a freight train I meet up with them in Upper Tantallion.


From there we rode along the coast on 3, veering off on roads like 329 to keep the bay and Atlantic Ocean in view.

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With the day getting long and the sun getting short, entering into prime deer time, Bill and I headed down RT 103 into Yarmouth. Walt kept along the coast a bit more.


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We had made reservations at the Best Western Mermaid in Yarmouth. Having checked in, Bill and I headed out for dinner to a pub the folks at BW recommended, but they were not serving diner anymore. Across the street was Rudders Seafood Restaurant and Brew Pub. We entered the joint to the live band playing If You Like Pina Coladas, not exactly a biker song but it works. Bill ordered a hamburger and I was a bit more adventurous with the Grilled Orange Salmon Salad. We both opted for the Blonde Rock beer brewed on site.
Now there was this couple sitting over to the right of us. The had the look of wealth even dressed kinda of crappy. She sat on one side of the table and he on the other. She was singing and clapping, moving her shoulders to the rhythm of the music and he looked like he couldn't wait to get out of the place. 
So dinner came and went and then the bill came. I really need to brush up on my multiplication since I way over tipped the waitress, I am sure it made her night. Oh my dinner was a nice portion of grilled salmon on a bed on spinach with walnuts sprinkled about and mandarin oranges lining the edge of the plate. It was actually pretty good.

Back at the Mermaid, Walter some how talked the desk into to giving him a key to our room and he waited patiently for us to come back.

Miles for the day, just over 400 miles. Not alot but a full day for me considering all the stops I had made. So ends our last night in Nova Scotia, but the adventure is not over yet.

T 2014 08 20

CLICK HERE for the SLIDESHOW (lots of previously unseen acts and gaffs)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

WWW Tour - Get off my Cloud - Day Four

I said, Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Don't hang around 'cause two's a crowd
On my cloud, baby

Mick Jagger / Keith Richards - Rolling Stones - 1965

I have resigned myself to a life of rain in Nova Scotia. Again I might be wrong.

We had dinner at Charlene's last night. I had ordered the penne with shrimp and stuff. Our waitress said "Are you sure you want that" "I would recommend the fish chowder" Boy was she right. Some of the best I have ever had. Trip Advisor gives it a 4.5 stars and Urban Spoon a solid 5 Stars. This is worth a stop.

Right next to us were 2 couples from the Palmer, MA area. Small world. They also were on bikes and rode thru hail storms. And we thought we had it bad with the rain.

The place that Annette in Port Hastings set up for us to stay in Whycocomaugh. Not a bad place to stay for the night. We had the space above the office. Kitchen, living space, 3 separate beds.

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Having had such a great meal last night, we stopped in for breakfast too. Eggs are eggs so I can't quite whoop it up over those. Walked out to go for a ride and we are presented with this.


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Does this mean the rain is over??

Stopped for Whycocomaugh sign. Yup the COCO counts since it is a repeating pattern of letters, at least it is in my book.

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We are headed for the Alexander Graham Bell Historic Site and museum back in Baddeck, NS.

Couple of DD stops before Baddeck.

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The outside of the museum.

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Little harbor right across the street.

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I always thought Alex only did the phone. Alex also did work on optical telecommunications, hydrofoils and aeronautics. He was also one of the founding members of the National Geographic Society.

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From Graham's place we headed toward Sydney to ride down RT 4 next to Bras d'Or Lake recommended by one of the folks in a Visitor Center. I missed all of the other opportunities for the signs for the Cabot Trail. Figured I better pick this one up since we are leaving the area.

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Bras d"or Lake and Seal Island Bridge, the 3rd longest span bridge in Nova Scotia

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I simply grabbed this picture because I have not see an Esso sign since the 60's.


On our way into Sydney I spotted a restaurant featuring chicken. From the looks of it, it is definetly a mom and pop type place. I tried to take a picture, but I could not get my camera out fast enough, the light had changed and had a 10 wheeler barreling down on me. I shamefully stole this one from the internet.


The next event could have ruined the day. Running smoothly into Sydney and all of a sudden the FJR just dies. Out of gas, can't be. Try jump starting by popping the clutch nothing. Pull over, which Bill follows. I dismount, walk to the front of his bike and shrug my shoulders, gesturing I don't have a clue. Bill gets off and I say maybe I blew the main fuse some how. We get ready to take off the seat, plastic and what ever else we need to tear off to get a what ever is wrong. I then look and see the kill switch is in the off position. Vrrooommm, purrrrrrrrrrr. Bill is relieved that we don't have to perform roadside surgery, and me, well let's just say I don't mind looking stupid in this instance.

I rarely use the throttle lock on my bike, but when I do I have to reach over with my left hand to twist it into a locking position. I must off hit the kill switch with my sleeve as I tried adjusting the lock. Hey I can take pictures on the fly in the rain descending a mountain on a twisty road, so I can be uncoordinated in some things.

Couple of pictures from the saddle on the Bras d'Or Scenic Highway.



Road construction on 4. In Canada they have runner trucks that you must follow on roads with construction on it. We have passed a couple during our travels, however this one was especially long. I reached the beginning of the run just in time and when I got to the end, knew Bill and Walt would not be coming for quite a while. I dismounted and laid down on a nicely grass section and closed my eyes for a while.

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When we all finally meet up I lead and quickly lost them in my mirrors. As I came down a hill with a street entering from the right, I spotted my first Mountie. Lots of brakes to get me down to a respectable over the limit speed. That Mountie followed me for about 15 minutes at 90 kph all the way into to Port Hawkesbury. As I entered Port Hawesbury I realized I had my flashers on the whole time. Well I was going kind of slow, for me.

The intent was to stay in Port Hastings for the night. On our way into Part Hawkesbury (right next to Port Hastings) we stopped at a Tim Horton's for a bite to eat. One of the workers got talking to Bill and she recommended a place right across the street to stay. She even went as far as making a phone call for us, however the line was busy. WOW you just don't see that kind of friendly much anymore. The folks of Nova Scotia are generally and genuinely NICE. They seem to enjoy life and try to impart some of that joy to their visitors. Might be a nice place to live someday.

No rooms to be found in 2 calls in Port Hastings / Hawkesbury. Bill tried the place we stayed in at Antigonish. We got the same suite we stayed in on Day 2. Perfect. Just under 200 miles for the day, but considering we spent quite a bit of time at the Bell museum the day was full.

t 2014 08 19

Monday, August 18, 2014

WWW Tour - I Can See for Miles and Miles - Day Three

I can see for miles and miles
I can see for miles and miles
I can see for miles and miles and miles and miles and miles
Oh yeah
The WHO ~ Pete Townsend ~ 1967

This is NOT going to be one of those days.

We may have been singing that, but Mother Nature decided we would have a different experience on the Cabot Trail. As Bill and Walt planned, giving me the separate room,  I did not wake them up fidgeting about. Office closed, no coffee any way, there was that McDonalds right next door. A large coffee and a hot hash brown should tied me over. Tried posting some pics on FB again, no luck.

Daybreak arrives, they get up, and we head for the Snow Queen for breakfast. Our room included breakfast. I had on my First Gear leggings, a wicking T Shirt and shorts over the legging. When I walked thru the door at the restaurant, I announced the Snow Queen had arrived. I got a few smiles, mostly weird looks. Breakfast was actually quite good. 2 eggs, sausage, home fries, and coffee.

Loading up the bikes with our indoor gear, I said it looked like the skies would clear. I would be wrong. I got to talking to a couple in the parking lot, Walt and Giff took off to get gas. I mounted up maybe 3 minutes later and turned right out of the parking lot. No gas station here. U Turn, go past the motel, no gas station here either. Another U turn and figured they took off. I simply started following the route. I would catch up.

About 12 Klicks or so out of town I realized I still had the motel key in my pocket. Dang this was an actual key, not one of those plastic throw away ones. Do I had back or do I pushed forward and mail it back. I don't have a clue where Bill and Walt are, so I head back to Anitgonish to turn the key in. 12 klicks back and redo the 12 klicks, so that is 48 wasted klicks, putting me about a half hour to 45 minutes behind. Bill said something about the Visitor Center in Port Hastings so I would met them there.

I arrived at the VC in Port Hastings, but no Bill or Walt. I couldn't have made here before them. Some 20 minutes later I see them. Hmmmm which way did they go to get here. No McDonalds around for a snack, so I took some pictures.

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At the VC's the folks that work there will make recommendations, phone motels and campsites for you and make the reservations. What a great service. Magilla used these guys up here with great success and he proved to be right. Bill and Walt were at a crossroads here. Do they camp or do they stay at the motel. Annette our hostess makes reservations at the Fair Isle Inn in Whycocomaugh for me. She did try to find a campground with cabins to accommodate my aversion to sleeping with the worms, but nothing was available. Bill and Walt would try to find a camping spot around where I was staying. For a fee I would let Bill and Walt stay there if they couldn't find someplace. Bwahahahaha.

We told them of our plan to head up 19 and pick up the Cabot Trail at Margaree Forks, which they agreed it would be the way to go. Bill suggested we meet at the first gas station in Cheticamp in the event that we get separated again. Sounds like a plan.

I see the Port Hood sign and head for it, Bill keeps going. See the Givi with the flag hanging. It is raining and I have my camera in there for protection versus the tank bag.

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Caught up with them in Iverness

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Soon to lose them again as I grab Margaree.

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A couple of pics along the Cabot Trail. At this point I am using my old Coolpix point and shoot on the move.



Getting into the good stuff






We crested the hill and there it was I pulled over and they follow. We all dismount and Bill says this is why we came here. The view was breathtaking. Unfortunately I haven't really conveyed that thru my camera. Practise, practice, practice.

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This would turn out to be the most scenic spot we encountered on the Cabot Trail. We head out for more eye candy.


While this doesn't offer a challenge for a riding standpoint, it shows how little traffic there is in Nova Scotia, at least on Monday on the Cabot Trail in the rain.

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Next spot was a beautiful view on the Gulf of St Lawrence.

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What really erks me is the folks that are in charge of the trash bins along the way, put one at here in the most strategically located spot to ruin any photographs taken.

We come up on a bunch of cars pulled over and folks getting out. Was there an accident. Nope Bullwinkle is having some water along side the road. I stop and wait for all the cars in front of me to do what they are going to do. Folks are approaching Bullwinkle and if it gets irked or just decides to have some fun by charging the group of taunters I wanted a clear path to make it thru.


Yeah I am a hypocrite, I did take my camera out too and snap off a few.

With the rain picking up a bit, I pulled into the Rusty Anchor. Figured it would be a good time for some soup. Bill brushing away the rain and Walt just looking water logged.

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A look out the window to see if the rain had stopped.

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We finished our lunch at the same time as the table next to us. All of us standing dreading going out in the rain. I offered the woman in her late 70's (my best guess) a ride on the bike on the handle bars so we could re-do the seen in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, singing Rain Drops Keep Falling on My Head. A brief discussion, she asked where are you from. I said Massachusetts. With great indignation she says "You're an American, aren't you? I said yeah is that a problem? I forgot her response. It was all said in the nicest way thou.


A good spot to let Bill and Walt catch up. Coming down off the high grounds in the rain on switchback roads can slow the pace abit.



As we were heading into Baddeck I kept seeing signs about the ferry, lights indicating if it was running or not. Now I know why.

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Waiting to cross

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Not waiting anymore.


Last pic of the day. I remember this specifically because at the ferry it seemed like the rain was going to stop. Again I was wrong. It had actually picked up quite a bit and I just barely got the camera out of the GIVI to click this one off for the Double Down Tour.

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Bill and Walt gave up on camping today and they had to treat me real nice because I was the only one that had a room. Not a lot of miles today, under 300. Tomorrow surely the rain has to stop.

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I want to know, have you ever seen the rain?
I want to know, have you ever seen the rain
Comin' down on a sunny day?
Creedence Clearwater Revival ~ 1971

CLICK HERE FOR A SLIDESHOW (additional pictures Editors Cut)