July 23rd, 2014.
I woke up and looked outside to find a mostly overcast sky, and decided to hit the highway and head west. I thought I might head north to one of the National Parks somewhat close by if the weather got better, but it didn’t. I was heading straight into the storm. There were times when I could hardy see because it was raining so hard, and by this time I decided I was just going to drive straight home. I only had enough money to get there anyway. Any extra driving would likely be on borrowed money, and I don’t like owing money (who does?) especially if I have to pay interest.
It was a long drive to get home. About 7 hours. I only stopped twice. Once for coffee and a doughnut and the other time was for lunch.
It was great to finally be home and see my family, have a proper home cooked meal… Ribs! to play the drums again, jamming with a friend, and to sleep in my extremely comfortable bed once again.
The trip was fairly hard on me, as well as my wallet. I spent about $1650 on gasoline. (with a possible $100 or so I may have forgot to record, I also filled a 20L jug for emergency that I never used) I averaged 11.3L/100km which is about 21mpg. Not bad, considering a real RV would have cost a lot more.
Long drives can be tiring, and I traveled a good distance, about 8000km, but the most tiring part was all the hiking I did. I’ve walked a fair bit in my photographic adventures around home, but not nearly as far as some of the hikes I did in my travels out east. I think the longest hike I did was about 7.5km, and there were some serious slopes to deal with, as I was in the mountains a lot. There isn’t any mountains where I live, the hills aren’t very big either, so I’m not used to that kind of terrain. I’d say most of the hiking was worth it, since the trails lead me to some amazing sights.
I’d really love to continue the trip as planned to see everything west of Ontario, but it’s not going to happen this year. I can’t afford it. The good thing is that when I make the trip next summer, I’ll have more time to spend, and if all goes well, I’ll have more money saved up. Another good thing is that I’ll have some of the kinks worked out that I discovered during my east coast travels. So I should be a little more prepared, which will be nice.
All in all it was an amazing trip. I saw so many amazing things in a very short period of time. I can hardly remember it all. Luckily I’ve got most of the good stuff captured with my camera. I can’t wait to share it all with you!
I’ve been processing my face off ever since I got home. I’ve also been working on a video of all my timelapses from the month of June, which will be online soon. (If not today, than tomorrow) The tail end has some of my timelapses from the east coast.
I feel like I didn’t give New Brunswick enough time. I didn’t get to see much because I was running out of money. I saw even less of Quebec. So I think I might explore some of Quebec before the summer is over. (Once I’ve made some money to do so) I’ll also explore some of Ontario that I haven’t photographed, so I can get a better start on the trip out west next summer.
I hope you all enjoyed my blogs about the trip. If you didn’t and you’re only here for the photos, you’re in luck, because this is the last entry for now, and I’ll be posting lots of photos in the near future.
If you’ve made it this far, I suggest you do some traveling as well, even if it’s just a weekend excursion, you might be amazed with the places you’ll end up, the people you’ll meet, and the experiences you’ll have. If you can’t afford it, or just can’t travel for one reason or another, then continue traversing the weird and wonderful, never ending, mind blowing, almighty beast we call the internet. I’m sure it can keep you entertained from here to the end of time.
July 22nd, 2014.
Without much thought, I decided to head for Quebec City, so I could explore “Old Quebec” Instead of going directly there on the Trans Canada highway, I took the more scenic route along the St. Lawrence River. Even so, I didn’t find anything of interest for a time-lapse, so the only stop I made was for lunch.
Once I was close, I tried to get to the information centre, but once I found it there was nowhere to park. I drove around and passed a few parking lots that were full until I found one right beside the river. Then I got a little lost trying to find my way back to the info centre on foot, but I found it eventually. It was really hot, and the hills were steep. By the time I found the info center again I was a sweaty mess, so I was more than happy to find it was air conditioned. I found a map of the area then took a seat and looked it over, basking in the cool air.
I should have asked someone about the sights to see, but instead I decided to just explore the area myself. I kept ending up in the same place and almost every time I found an intersection with street names to get my bearings, one of the streets wasn’t on the map I had. It is a nice area, the buildings are cool, but everything is overpriced and it’s mostly stores and gift shops, which are no fun if you’ve got no money to spend. I did find a short road lined with art of various styles, which was a good browse. Just around the corner from there was a bunch of portrait and character sketching booths. I saw one guy that was just putting the finishing touches on a charcoal drawing of a girl. It was really good. I was hoping someone else would get one done by the same guy so I could do a time-lapse, but no one did, and it wasn’t long before he packed his stuff and left. It was almost 5pm by this time and I was getting hungry. Since all the restaurants were out of my budget, I headed back to my car to make a sandwich. I found my way there alright, but realized there was a shorter route after.
I decided to drive around to explore the area more efficiently. Bad idea. I just got lost. Driving in Quebec is the worst. There’s tons of one way streets, construction, pedestrians, and crazy drivers. It makes me anxious and frustrated. Then there’s the language problem. I can’t speak French, and although I thought it was a bilingual city, it doesn’t appear to be that way everywhere. Most of the signs are in French. A lot of the people I tried to talk to didn’t speak English. Does it sound like I’m complaining yet? I don’t think I’ll stay here long, but since I payed $16 for parking, which is good until 7am tomorrow, I’ll spend the night then move on bright and early.
The sun was about to set in an hour or 2, so I grabbed my gear and walked along the waterfront until I found a decent spot. They sunset was alright, and the movement of the boats made it more fun,
Once it got dark, I got hungry again. Since I didn’t want to break out the stove, I decided to look for a restaurant with prices I could handle.
I lucked out and found a Vietnamese place with $10 dishes. I went with the safe bet and got the chicken fried rice. I had a local beer with dinner and It hit the spot! I was in a much better mood after that. Asian food and beer will do that.
I kept on trekking and did some stereoscopic shots of art installations and interesting buildings. There was a lot less people around and it was much cooler, though still very humid. The experience was much nicer at night.
Since I had to get up at 7am (when my parking pass expired) I decided to call it an early night and went to bed around 11.
I decided I’d keep heading west in the morning.
July 21st, 2014.
It was a little cool when I woke up around 9. A nice change from baking in the sun most mornings on this trip.
I made a ham and egg sandwich and a coffee. I think I’ve finally perfected the french press, as it was a fine brew!
I headed back out to the lake, and did some timelapses. It was overcast, but there were two layers of clouds, so the timelapses are somewhat interesting. I caught some people launching a boat and fishing in the second one.
It was just after noon, so I decided to leave the park before I’d get charged for another day. (I’m not sure how strict they are, but they seem more so than the other parks I’ve been to)
Of course as soon as I left the park the clouds morphed into awesome fluffy blobs. I pulled over to get a time-lapse of them over some pine trees. While I was there some park rangers came to check out what I was doing. I think they thought I was hunting, but the only thing I was hunting was clouds, and a few flies that were annoying me. Luckily I was done my time-lapse at this point so I went on my way.
I found a better place for a time-lapse, overlooking the mountains in the distance with the same fluffy clouds drifting by and changing shape.
A little further down the road I found a field of rape with it’s vibrant yellow flowers. Yet another time-lapse with more of the same clouds.
The next stop was a Tim Hortons. I’ve be loving their $1 iced coffees and free wifi.
I drove west on the Trans Canada Highway for a while, left New Brunswick and entered Quebec. I felt like I was in Quebec for the last day or so already, because everyone seemed to speak french. I guess part of New Brunswick is french, which I didn’t know.
While I was on the highway, driving along the St. Lawerence River, I could see sun beams shooting through the clouds over the mountains. I pulled over at a rest stop hoping I would find a decent view. I drove down a trail with a bunch of picnic areas, then got out of the car when I saw a walking trail that looked like it might lead to the river. I did a lot of walking down hill, dreading the hike back to the car. I made a few turns at forks in the trail, and eventually decided that I wasn’t going to reach the lake without getting lost, so I turned back. It was really tiring going up hill all the while trying to make it back quickly so I could find a better place to shoot from.
The next exit was much better. A town called Norte-Dame-Du-Portage. While I was shooting at least 3 different people told me that it was the second best place in the world for sunsets, next to Hawaii. The pre-sunset was awesome, but right before the reds started to show it kind of fizzled out. I still got 2 good timelapses out of it.
I found a Walmart close by with dozens of RVs already parked there. I’ll stay there tonight and figure out where to go in the morning.