Twillingate, NL

Sunday, August 7, 2022

Bonavista to Twillingate, NL

Cumulative miles: 3,960

Partly sunny, low 60s rising to low 80s

We were on the road by 8:00 headed for Peyton’s Woods RV Park in Twillingate. We made a few stops along the way. The first was in Terra Nova National Park where we drove to Blue Hill Overlook for an expansive view of the area.

Blue Hill Overlook in Terra Nova National Park

Later, we hiked the short but rather steep Mill Cove Lookout Trail. Much of this trail is on slick rock. As we climbed the rocky hill in front of us we thought, is this it?  That’s when we spotted the real summit, a whole bunch higher. The climb was worth it, though, because the view was spectacular with mountains and coves intertwined in the distance. Strong winds are the rule in Newfoundland and, the wind up there was something else!

Our First Glimpse of Summit of Mill Cove Lookout
Following Sandy Up the Trail
Right Side View of Mill Cove from Top of Trail
Left Side View of Mill Cove from Top of Trail
Winding Trail Back Down Mill Cove Lookout Trail Begins with Stairway at Lower Left

We just couldn’t resist taking a picture of the sign for Dildo Run Provincial Park. Turns out the term has meanings other than what may have popped into your mind. Today, the name applies to the Dildo Arm of Trinity Bay. Some people note that the word was used, historically, to refer to a thole pin used on a boat as a pivot for an oar. However, Captain James Cook and his assistant Michael Lane, who mapped Newfoundland in the 1760s, often displayed a sense of humor in the place names they chose and were not above selecting names that might offend over-sensitive readers.

Dildo Signs are Popular Subject for Photographers

During a short stop in Windsor, we satisfied a number of needs as we purchased groceries, made a Wal-Mart run and, finally, stopped at a McDonald’s for ice cream treats.

We fell in love with Twillingate as soon as we laid eyes on this lovely community.

Caravan Members Gather in Pavilion for Travel Briefing
Deep Red Sunset Colors were Due to Wildfires in Central Newfoundland

Monday, August 8, 2022

Twillingate, NL

Sunny, mid 70s

Our group visited a couple of local attractions. Our first stop was the Prime Berth Fishing Museum. The owners have built this venue using a combination of buildings including the fishing shed of the owner’s father. He actually pulled it off its original pilings and towed it to its current location. The museum was filled to the brim with collected tools and old photos that illustrated the history of cod fishing in the  area.

Overall View of Prime Berth Fishing Museum
Tiny Portion of Collections that Jammed Buildings
Got to Wonder what These Old Bottles Once Held

For the main event the owner demonstrated the cleaning and salting of an actual cod fish in preparation for drying. We’d seen an illustration of this process earlier using stuffed fish dolls, so this repeated those steps but much more realistically. As a note, the fish’s liver was tossed into a special bucket where it would eventually break down into the much reviled cure-all, cod liver oil.

Cod Liver Oil Bucket Sits at Left Side of Table as Prime Berth Owner Prepares Cod for Salting
Salt for Cod was Imported from Europe Because it is too Cool and Humid to Evaporate Salt in Newfoundland
How Header, Cutter and Splitter Worked as a Team at One Table

He also told the story of the July 2, 1992 cod moratorium, a government decision that devastated the cod industry by banning cod fishing along Canada’s east coast. Over fishing had reduced the cod population to one percent of historical levels and only a complete moratorium could allow the population to recover. Cod fishing still made up a huge portion of Newfoundland’s economy as it had for 500 years. Instantly, more than 30,000 Newfoundland/Labrador workers lost their jobs.

Originally planned as a two-year moratorium, it is still in effect because the cod recovery hasn’t really succeeded. And, so, it’s been a long hard recovery for the economy. Now fishing for shrimp, lobsters and crabs has taken over. And, tourism is an ever more important economic element. Keep in mind that there were almost no roads in the area until the 1960s, so the only way to get from place to place back then was by boat. That has now changed in a big way.

Next on our agenda was Auk Island Winery, another example of people finding businesses to replace cod fishing. This winery uses only local, wild berries to make its wines; no grapes are harmed in the process. The berry sourcing and wine making process was described to us in detail and with humor. A wine tasting followed. We found the flavors to be unique and the names of the wines, like “Kiss Me Arse” to be humorous. To many of us, though, the flavors seemed a bit thin, if that’s the right term, so we didn’t purchase any. However, their gift shop featured some really neat items so they made out ok, anyway.

That afternoon I wrote while Sandy did a couple of loads of wash and then hiked to the top of a steep hill that overlooked the town.

Looks Like Retirement Time for this Small Boat
Looking Over Twillingate Harbor
Looks Like this Boat has Seen Better Days
Twillingate from Overlook

Dinner was a group affair at the Twillingate NWI Dinner Theater. Sandy had salmon while I opted for lobster. The food was quite good and the show was even better. The show consisted of some really good traditional musical performances interspersed with some very corny skits that had the audience, and at times the cast, in stitches.

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Twillingate, NL

Cumulative miles: 4,243

Overcast most of the day, low 60s and windy

This was a laid back day. We drove out to the tiny but lovely settlement of Crow’s Head to get breakfast at the Crow’s Nest Café. Sadly, they were not serving breakfast. They recommended we head back to Twillingate to the Cozy Tea Room & Bakery.  Although they had no good gluten-free options for Sandy, I had the toutons special. A local favorite, toutons are flat, pan-fried bread rounds, traditionally served with baked beans. They were tasty and filling. While I was stuffing my face, Sandy engaged in conversation with a couple of women who were traveling the area together.

Brightly Painted Root Cellar in Crows Head
Unfortunately, Crows Nest Cafe Wasn’t Serving Breakfast
Toutons and Beans are Standard Breakfast Fare at the Cozy Tea Room & Bakery

I wanted to catch up on my writing so Sandy and fellow traveler, Lesley, explored the area and, along the way, walked to the Crows Head lighthouse.

Shoreline as Sandy & Leslie Walk to Lighthouse
Cloud Berry Plants Looks Like Christmas Decorations but the Berries, Known Locally as Bakeapples, will Ripen to a Yellow Color
Looking Back at Twillingate on Crow Head Hike
Trails Crisscross Shoreline Near Crow Head
Long Point Lighthouse at End of Hike

At the overlook they caught a glimpse of a whale spouting and a tiny iceberg.

Yes Virginia There Actually Was an Iceberg Off Crow Head that Day

They also checked out a couple of shops in “downtown” Twillingate.

Locally Made Quilts are a Staple of Newfoundland Road Stands and Gift Shops

That evening we had lobster for dinner. Our caravan leaders had purchased lobsters at wholesale for those who  requested them.  We added a salad and melted butter and enjoyed a delicious meal.  Nan joined us for dinner and later she & Sandy played Scrabble while I read.

Lobster is Always a Welcome Dinner Entrée
Nan Don’t Need No Fancy Tools to Crack Lobster Claw