Ah, the Rock! We were up at dawn (what's new?) but Bob Shortt beat us to it and was outside the RV catering to his two newly-arrived Lab puppies and grinning like a new father.
The Margaree Valley is a spectacular place to wake up, and a tough place to leave - but we had a ferry to catch.
Marine Atlantic's new MV Highlanders are an impressive vessel. We had a great crossing - left North Sydney smack on time and had pretty plain sailing across the gulf. The crew were just great - helpful, courteous and Newfoundland-friendly. In contrast to crossings in the past, the entertainment was superb; and our lunch was great in the shiny new restaurant. The pet area was vey accessible and worked perfectly. Absolutely no complaints. Quite the contrary.
And it's always a treat to arrive in Port aux Basques and see all that rock right there. We're posing as tourists and tryIng to see through the eyes of first-time visitors wherever we go. Newfoundland is so dramatically physically different from the Maritimes it has to make an immediate impression upon disembarkation.
And you don't have to wait long for impressive scenery. The weather gave us the hills at the lower end of the Codroy Valley, only minutes along the trans-Canada, skirted by mist: awesome.
We made our way up to a campground in Steady Brook just at the base of the ski hill above Corner Brook, with the mighty Humber River flowing past just across the highway. That particular spot always reminds us of driving down the Fraser River toward Vancouver. It's pretty special.
And, of course, it's Newfoundland. Everybody talks to ya.
So typical of the place - after a $170 fill-up (and that's just over half a tank) our VISA card demanded authorization. We were obliged to ask the young attendant if we could move the rig so as not to block pumps - no problem. Then we lost cell service and couldn't call the credit card company right away - no problem.
Turns out the nice people at VISA thought we had left Canada and the automatic security measures kicked in.
Looking forward to some poking around the west coast in the morning and then a trip to central Newfoundland in the afternoon.