In the evening of August 5th, Jonathan and I left Montreal and drove to Quebec City to stay overnight at our friend's house. We were out the door the next morning bright and early. The first 2 hour leg of our drive had beautiful scenery; the morning sun shining on the Fleuve St-Laurent, the monadnocks near La Pocatière, and the mountains of the Charlevoix region standing tall in the backdrop. It was a pretty cool view to kick off our trip!
Not only did the time change once we entered New Brunswick, the french accent on the local radio stations switched to Acadian rather abruptly. We thought there might be a transition from Quebec's accent to the Acadian accent- especially near the border of the two provinces- but that was not the case. Hearing the accent is always a bit nostalgic from me; my grandmother's family is Acadian, and growing up I spent many summer vacations in the Maritimes.
The drive down to southern New Brunswick was calm yet enjoyable. Jonathan finished some office work while I took the helm for the rest of the day. We arrived to Fundy National Park and began to make our way to our campsite only to be greeted with a great deal of road construction. We finally arrived at our campsite in Pointe Wolfe a bit past 4pm.
We registered, bought a bag their firewood, and set up camp. The campground itself was very well maintained and the camping sites were of a generous size. We were definitely not alone however, it must have been at max capacity; the great majority being families with huge camping set ups and RVs. I definitely got the feeling that this place would be a gem during the off-season.
Our one major complaint of the night? The firewood they sold us was very, VERY wet. Even in between all our outdoor experience, scouts and girl guides, and let alone the countless times we've made campfires at our parents' places in the Laurentians.. we could not keep this fire going for the life of us. It is strictly prohibited to bring in firewood from other regions (for forest health/infestation concerns) so this sac of drenched wood was our only option. After cooking a few hot dogs and having salad that we brought from home, the 8 hours spent driving that day finally caught up to us and we turned in for the night.
The next morning we woke up around 7am to a surprisingly quiet campground. The majority of people were only up and about around 9:30-10.. a stark contrast to our campsite in the Adirondacks where nearly everyone wakes up around sunrise to get to mountains for a hike. It was a gorgeous morning.
First thing we did was head to their facilities for a hot shower only to be greeted with a tiny "OUT OF ORDER" sign for the building. How does an ENTIRE bathroom/laundry amenity building go out of service? We joked about what could have happened during our 10min walk to the second nearest station. Once back at our tent, we quickly packed everything up and were on our way.
On our way out of the campground we stopped to check out the Point Wolfe Covered Bridge that is often photographed for NB tourism images. We also stopped at a lookout with a great view of the cliffs towering above the bay. We drove 30 minutes to Cape Enrage only to find out that our Parks Canada pass did not work there and we'd have to pay to enter. Funny how the two main attractions of the Bay of Fundy (Cape enrage and Hopewell rocks) are not in the actual national park so you're forced to pay extra to see it. Being the budget travelers we are we just turned around at stopped at a nearby bay. Jonathan had fun creating cairns while I walked down to the water.
Once back in the car, we drove to Hopewell Rocks as Jonathan had never been there and it had been over a decade for myself. First thing I noticed while we pulled into the parking lots is the sheer amount of people. It reminded be of Peggyscove in Nova Scotia with giant tour buses full of tourist, complete with kitchy gift shops and over priced food. Thankfully Hopewell Rocks wasn`t nearly as polluted as Peggyscove, the latter having been littered with cigarette butts and wrappers the last time I visited. It may have been abnormally busy seeing how it was an absolutely gorgeous friday morning. Nevertheless, we paid the entry fees and walked down towards the `flower pots`.
The natural beauty of the place is astounding. It's no wonder it's a huge tourist attraction. I heard an american tourist tell her children "Keep smiling because chances are you're in someone's photo at all times!" We laughed because she was probably right. We roamed the beach for about an hour and then headed back to the car to drive to Antigonish.