We left Brackley Beach PEI at 7:45 am on July 29. We decided to take the Wood Island Ferry to Nova Scotia rather than the Confederation Bridge. The cost of the ferry was $110. It would have cost $65 to take the bridge, plus more miles and fuel. We arrived in Little Bras D'Or (North Sydney) at 3:30 pm. We stopped for lunch and fuel ($1.29 per litre). The terrain is different again - more hilly and forested. We are again facing the water in a very nice grassed site at the Arm of Gold Campground in Little Bras D'Or, 30 km from Sydney and 3 km from the Newfoundland Ferry. We will be here for five nights.
On the 30th we drove into Sydney. We were looking for Canadian Tire and following our GPS. We turned left at an intersection that included Canadian Tire. However, our GPS "Berta", who's been with us for quite a while now, wanted us to turn right on Incinerator Access Road. Sure enough the municipal incinerator is down that road - but not Canadian Tire! We went back and found it ourselves. Larry figures that Navteq (the company known for providing excellent quality maps to GPS companies) has not been in Nova Scotia since the Second World War! We got our shopping done and drove on further to Glace Bay. Along the way we saw signs indicating Drag Races and we always turn when we see drag racing signs. Turns out they were along an old Airport Road and were just for motorcycles this weekend. Bikefest is being held in Sydney this weekend and they are expecting 8000 bikers to attend. In Glace Bay we stopped at the Marconi National Historic Site. It was very interesting and gave us an idea of the different terrain of this island. We took the seashore route back to the campground. We also checked out the ferry terminal - a trial run for Wednesday. The clouds and wind were coming in again. It rained a lot over night.
The 31st dawned - and it was still raining at 6 am. By 8 am the sun was showing through. It worked hard all day and eventually beat the clouds. We ended up at Tim Horton's in North Sydney again and the guy beside us was telling us the gas stations were running out of gas. We had heard on the news that there was a power outage in Dartmouth that may not be repaired for two weeks! They were already feeling it here on Cape Breton. So we filled up and decided we will curb our driving around for the next couple of days, just seeing a couple of sites not too far away. When we got back to the RV site, our tire pressure monitor told us that our right rear tire in the Jeep was low. Larry found a screw in it!
Larry got the tire fixed the morning of the 1st. We did a little sightseeing in the area. We stopped at the Florence Legion Branch 83 for a beer. As with the others, we were the only ones there. But apparently this is their slow season. In winter it really picks up. The bartender was telling us that they do a breakfast every Sunday for $5.00 and they do this all year that sees between 300 and 450 in attendance every Sunday. We will try to get to it when we get back from Newfoundland.
On the 2nd we went to Fortress of Louisbourg. This is an amazing National Historic Site. It was another $35 towards the cost of our National Park Pass. We spent a couple of hours looking around. The French came to Louisbourg in 1713. It quickly became France's most important stronghold. By 1760, it lay in English hands and its fortifications were destroyed. Today it is the largest reconstructed 18th century town in North America. A lot of the buildings have been restored and contain wonderful exhibits of examples of early building styles, early tools, weaponry, etc. We saw the changing of the guard and a pipe and drum group. There were many guides dressed in period costume that were a wealth of information. For example, the cannons shot 6 pound balls out to sea that could travel 2 miles in 23 seconds. By the time you heard the noise from the cannon, it was already 1/3 of the way to the target. Once you saw the cannon ball it was too late to avoid being hit.
We also went to Lighthouse Point. This is the site of the first lighthouse in Canada (and second in North America). The one standing today is the third one built at this site. The other two, while their foundations are still there, both burned down. Of course it is not a manned lighthouse. There is a modern fog horn located at the site.
On the third we take the six hour ferry ride to Newfoundland.