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Pam Martin & John Kernaghan

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Thunderbay, Ontario’s sleeping giant  or Nanabijou, the Spirit of The Deep Sea Water according to one Ojibway legend. Nanabijou was turned to stone when the secret location of a rich silver mine was disclosed. A beautiful view from our room at the @princearthurhotel , Thunderbay is one of those cities that we’ve stayed on the outskirts of our way west before but never explore. We had a lovely stay downtown, views of the waterfront and a really delicious meal at bight restaurant and bar. Dropping into Thunderbay for the night is highly recommended. If you stop at the Terry Fox monument the wonderful tourist centre can tell you everything you need to know😴
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@discoverontario @visitthunderbay #visittbay @ontariotravel #discoveron #roadtrip #vanlife Winter nights in small town northern Ontario have a distinct feel with their wide, snow covered main streets devoid of traffic either foot or vehicle. Wawa, home of the famous Wawa Goose monument lights up its downtown with a tribute to the famous Wawa Goose that has attracted visitors since 1963 🦆
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@wawa @wawatourism @ontariotravel @discoverontario @destinationnorthernontario @canamrv @mercedesbenzvansca #smalltowncharm #northernontario #rollydooley #roadtrip #roadtripcanada @bluejellyfishsup @fitforanythingadventures ...the big lake they called Gitche Gumee 🎶 *
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#lakesuperior #greatlakes #canadaroadtrip #rollydooley #roadtrip @discoverontario THE NEXT CHAPTER BEGINS 🚐💨
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Steering our new pal, Rolly Dooley across country on a wintery roadtrip to Vancouver Island ❄️
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#roadtripcanada #rollydooley #mercedessprinter #thegreattrail #vanlife @bluejellyfishsup #rollinrollinrollin #keepthemdogiesrollin @fitforanythingadventures @canamrv @mercedesbenzvansca The rain didn't stop Pam from her yoga routine on the Brudenell River in PEI during Canada Onboard's Canada 150 celebration. Wind and fog issues on Charlottetown Harbour meant a diversion to the broad Brudenell, whose placid surface was perfect for downward dogs 🧘‍♀️⠀
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@tourismpei @explorecanada @peinationalpark @women_who_paddle @bluejellyfishsup @fitforanythingadventures #roadtrip #crosscanadapaddlingroadtrip #explorecanada #explorepei #adventure #sup #supcanada #standuppaddleyoga #downwarddog #makingthebestoftherain ⠀
We showed the flag right across Canada during our 150 birthday celebration, holding it tight here on a blustery September day on PEI. Weather and time limited us to a single paddle on an island which boasts plenty of on-water options🇨🇦⠀
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@tourismpei @explorecanada @PEInationalpark @bluejellyfishsup @fitforanythingadventures #roadtrip #crosscanadapaddlingroadtrip #ExplorePEI #explorecanada #adventure

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At our second Newfoundland stop, the Marble Inn Resort in Steady Brook, near Corner Brook, we discovered one thing better than paddling — après paddling.

The launch point behind the Marble Inn Resort.

The launch point behind the Marble Inn Resort.

Aprés Paddle

On a sunblessed afternoon following a leisurely cruise up the Humber River, we pulled chilled wine from the cooler and lolled on the dock as the river cooled our feet.
This was the second paddle in our Canada 150 project to celebrate Canada’s waterways from Newfoundland to Vancouver Island in 30 days by SUV and crazy camper van.

 

A perfect cold water dip after a steaming sauna!

A perfect cold water dip after a steaming sauna!

Even better, the Marble staff fired up the riverside sauna, a barrel-shaped structure with a protruding plexiglass panel to view the glistening Humber. This was hot but welcome work interrupted by a scamper down a path to the dock and submersion in the river followed by a hasty retreat to the sauna.

Beautiful views of the Long Range Mountains while we paddled.

Beautiful views of the Long Range Mountains while we paddled.

River Navigation

The paddle was initially a lesson for the novice in negotiating the little licks of water intersecting a marshy area, John down on his knees trying to read the depth and speed of the water in the mini channels bordered by sedges.

Navigating the Humber River

Navigating the riffles & pools of the Humber River, Steady Brook, Newfoundland.

Pam’s rule of thumb, follow the tiny trail of foam as it generally courses where the water is deepest, worked fine. It was a fun bit of water play before the river widened and we passed a few cottages, exchanging ‘where are you froms?’ with renters.

The Stunning Humber River

The Humber flows for 153 kilometers, dropping close to 700 metres from its origins to the Bay of Islands near Corner Brook. Accordingly, guide John, of the Marble Inn Resort advised to stay clear of the mid section of the river, which would be flowing fast in later afternoon.

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So we explored close to quiet shores, drinking in the Long Range mountains, which rose spectacularly around us.

We enjoyed the pull of tide and wind at our backs heading back to the resort, where wine and sauna waited. The beauty of the launch point right behind the hotel and a choice of house paddleboards was its’ convenience. No unloading from the SUV and a room and hot shower close at hand.

Gear, launch site and views courtesy of the Marble Inn Resort.

Gear, launch site and views courtesy of the Marble Inn Resort.

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Visionary Joe Dicks

Owner Joe Dicks has built quite an operation here, an all seasons resort flanked by the Humber River and Marble Mountain ski runs and close to paddling, hiking and fishing adventures either direction up Western Newfoundland’s coast. His associated company, Explore Newfoundland, offers everything from family adventures to expeditions for serious photographers.
And his Inn offers big, well-appointed rooms and nice amenities like a large indoor pool in a classic spa setting with whirlpool and sauna close by.

Local Gastronomy

Moreover, the Marble Inn offers a high-end restaurant called Madison’s which listed several creative dishes during our visit.
But as we were seated a quintet of large fragrant house burgers lined up and waiting to be served was eye candy we could not pass on.
After a day on the water and in the sun and sauna, we craved comfort food.
The breakfast buffet was a hit, too, with fresh pastries and fruit, made-to-order waffles and a choice of cereals as well as very good coffee and a wide range of teas.

Pam particularly appreciated the small things that make a difference – tiny chocolates on offer at the breakfast buffet and amply sized mugs to warm one’s hands around whilst sipping nice quality Earl Grey.

All together it was the perfect spot to rest up for the next stage of our journey and the overnight ferry from Port aux Basques, NL to North Sydney, NS.

Marine Atlantic ferry just before sunrise North Sydney, NS to Port aux Basques, Newfoundland.

Marine Atlantic ferry just before sunrise North Sydney, NS to Port aux Basques, Newfoundland.

Marine Atlantic ferry pulling into Port aux Basques, Newfoundland at sunrise.

Marine Atlantic ferry pulling into Port aux Basques, Newfoundland at sunrise.

View from the Marine Atlantic ferry at our sunrise arrival into Port aux Basques, NL.

View from the Marine Atlantic ferry at our sunrise arrival into Port aux Basques, NL.

 

Meet our new friend, Molly Kool!

"Molly Kool" Joins Our Adventure!

“Molly Kool” Joins Our Adventure!

 

Our mascot, Molly Kool, honours North America’s first woman ship’s captain. Molly, of Alma, N.B., learned her craft from her father Paul, a Dutch immigrant, and plied it largely on the Bay of Fundy. Marine law had to be changed to add “her” to legislation covering sea captains after she earned her papers.

She survived collisions at sea and eventually wore down the skepticism of male counterparts with her skill in plying Canadian waters. She passed away in 2009 at age 93.
Molly, a Marine Atlantic prop will be onboard with us from Newfoundland to Vancouver Island. Who knows where she may pop up along the way…

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