|Mileage:||Start: 1088, End 1207, 119 total|
|Time:||9:00 off for a hike, 8:00 pm moored for the night|
|Weather:||Morning fog, Bright Sun and plenty of wind|
|Location:||Margaree, Lake Bras d'Or (Baddeck)|
We are going back up the Cabot trail to a hike called "Skyline", it promises to be a bright and sunny day, once the fog lifts. Tonight we return to Baddeck for a stay on the yacht Elsie !
What a day !
By the time we finished our oatcakes and stewed rhubarb the morning fog was burning off rapidly. A fond farewell to the Normaway and off to Cheticamp we went.
We parked the car and began the skyline hike. The main trail from this parking lot is a mountian climb in reverse, you descend less than 1000 feet to a breathtaking ocean overlook. There were many signs of moose along the trail, hoof prints, droppings and shrubs grazed at moose shoulder height. A group of returning hikers had just spotted several moose not very far down the trail but we were not as fortunate. The flora along the trail changed from balsam and hardwood groves to alpine meadows and we could begin to see the barrens along the cliffs edge. We took our time on the barrens, bird watching, eating blueberries and trying to throw rocks into the ocean. We returned along a much longer and less traveled loop, walking past ancient lichen covered birch trees stunted and twisted almost beyond recognition. Birch trees with trunks this thick in New Hampshire are 80 feet tall, not 20.
We removed our muddy boots and made for Baddeck. After watching tour busses, motor homes and campers head north up the Cabot trail one after another, we opted for the much less popular and faster southern route to Baddeck.
We arrived at the Inverary dock and checked in with Captain Peter Patterson, he was busy preparing the Elsie for our evening sail. We had enough time before sailing to grab provisions for a midnight snack and a martini at dockside. As we sipped our drinks the wind picked up and white-caps developed on the lake, we knew we were in for a great sail !
We set sail and sped across little Bras d'Or at 7 knots. Peter commented that the high evening wind was a rare occurrence, lucky for us as we all got to enjoy some exciting sailing. On return to Baddeck Elsie was moored in a small private cove - the same cove used for Elsie by six generations of Bell descendants. Peter and wife Lois then left by light of the moon, leaving us for a good nights rest. Rosanne and I explored the cabin like a couple of kids, frequently bumping into each other. We then made a wonderful feast of smoked salmon, grapes, wine and cheese on the deck while watching the sky.
This is not a good hike if you suffer from vertigo or agoraphobia.
Acrobatic Ravens, playing in the wind above the Skyline trail. Wonder if they had read Jonathan Livingston Seagull?