2019 Canadian Maritimes travel blog

Got snow? Even more out back

Sod house, built like the ones used by the Vikings

Inside the sod house

Foundation of one of the original buildings. Note indentation.

Tuesday, June 18  

It rained most of the night and was still raining when we got up.  Today, the plan is to go to L'Anse aux Meadows, which is north of here and close to being the most northern part of the Newfoundland land mass.  It is where the Vikings first settled. Of course, we were hoping to to see some icebergs as well. We left around 8:30 as the Park opens at 9. It was 49 degrees at our campsite and dipped to 46 on the way.  Most of the day was around 54. We saw lots of patches of snow along the road, and at the historic sight, there was lots and lots. Will try to post a pic. It was light rain/fog most of the way up and while we were there.  L'anse aux Meadows National Historic Site of the first Viking settlement in North America, around 1000 AD. The remains include ruins and artifacts of the Norse buildings. This included foundations, now covered with grass/vegetation.  There are sod replicas of the former buildings. A man dressed in Norse costume gave us information about life back then. It was very interesting. I asked the visitor staff about the bent over and dead trees we had been seeing. She said on the coast, it was from the salt spray and wind and ice.  Inland they have lots of dead trees due to a prior insect infestation. Re the firewood, she said people have to get a permit that says where they can cut and how much. They aren't allowed to sell it. They often cut it in winter and haul it out by snowmobile. Most people either totally heat with wood, or at least supplementally.  We asked about seeing icebergs and were told there was a big one yesterday a little ways down the road. We drove up and down the main road and a couple of side roads, but unfortunately it was too rsiny and foggy to see it if it was still there. Too bad. We really wanted to see one. On the way back down the coast, we saw the ferry from Labrador coming in.  I thought it was a cruise ship and then realised we were close to the ferry road. Finally around 4, the sun came out, right after some dense fog. We drove 396 miles today, with a bit of it hunting icebergs. We're at the KOA Norris Point/Gros Morne park. The sights are secluded with lots of trees in between. Good news is, it's too cold for black flies or mosquitoes.  When we walked around the campground, we could hear sheep bleating nearby. Tomorrow, we'll return to the campground near the Nova Scotia ferry, and have some down time. We have reserved our spot on the boat for Thursday.

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