Our stay in Kippens is just west of Stephenville. Stephenville is a supply center for the southwest area of Newfoundland taking care of about 25,00 people locally. It has a modern hospital and the Stephenville International Airport which is used by about 90,000 people along the entire west coast of Newfoundland.
With only 2 1/2 days at this stop, we wanted to see as much as we could. The best was the drive from Kippens through Port au Port all the way to Cape St. George. Then, we kept going north along the coast all the way back to Kippens. The trip was a large loop of only about 80 miles. Fantastic scenery!
Port au Port had a really nice museum at Our Lady of Mercy
historical church. Construction of the church started in 1914 and was not finished until 1925. Every person that was able to work was expected to donate at least one week of labor to help build the church. When finished, it was debt free. Well worth the stop.
Next was the Alpaca farm. The proprietor, Cathy Whitehead, was a delight to meet. We visited for quite a while learning about the alpaca business. I bought a beatuful sweater and some alpaca socks all locally made. She has a website and does mail order. Great stuff!l Alpaca's of Newfoundland
I am going to order another pair of socks. They are awesome for hiking!
The entire route is dotted with coves and very small fishing villages. The next stop was Shreaves Cove. We spotted a camper along the shoreline. So, we stopped to see what was there. It was like a local small park. We met some very nice Canadian's on holiday from Nova Scotia where he had a Strawberry Farm.
Next stop was Cape St George home to Kittiwakes, Gannets and whales. We are high on the cliffs with a view of the Gulf of St. Lawrence as far as you can see. Spectacular! At this time all we could see were the Kittiwakes, wild orchids, butterflies and our first introduction to the Tuckamore. This term defines the stunted, windblown Balsam Fir and Spruce trees found in Alpine areas. I imagine we will be seeing a lot of the Tuckamore along the Newfoundland coastlines.
As we moved north from Cape St. George we travelled through picturesque little towns in hunt of a restaurant. Just as we had decided we probably would not find something until we got back to Port au Port or Kippens, we found Oliver's in a small town called Piccadilly. The food was great and the service very friendly. I think there was a small market down the street, but nothing else. This was a long day, but so much fun.
The next day we drove into Kippens and Stephenville to see what there might be to see. Went grocery shopping and drove south along the coast. There was not much to see, but more small communities. I think we were a little tired from the previous day's adventure. This was just a glimpse of southwest Newfoundland. Really glad we took the time.
We have not encountered any moose yet. But, we have been warned not to drive at night. There are Watch for Moose signs everywhere.
Tommorrow we move on to Rocky Harbour in the Gros Morne National Park.