Day 55 – 2nd September (Riviére-du-Loup to Sainte Anne des Monts)

Lovely, if chilly, weather on awaking.

Decent enough buffet breakfast again, and a very leisurely checkout as midday was the deadline.

This has been rather an odd place. I get that it’s on the St. Lawrence River, which we are following as part of our journey, but there’s not a lot to do and the town is nothing special. The room was fine, although not as private as we would have liked. Food and shower great, however.

Before we set off once again north-eastwards along the line of the St. Lawrence towards Sainte Anne des Monts, we drove down along La Pointe to the Riviére-du-Loup marina that we’d walked towards yesterday. Nice little drive, but nothing of major interest apart from some very posh houses.

Turned round and went back along the St. Lawrence in the opposite direction. Same again.

So off we set along Autoroute 20 East for a three-hour drive. This was at least more interesting than the two previous drives as it was rolling rather than dead flat, it went through some towns instead of bypassing them, we spent a lot more time actually driving alongside the river and there were some bends and traffic lights. Wow. Otherwise, absolutely nothing of significance. Lovely sunny weather, but definitely chillier now.

One observation – Canadian driving. To avoid incurring the wrath of the authorities, I stuck reasonably rigidly to the indicated speed limit. Despite this, I was passed by anything and everything – trailers, trucks, school buses, you name it – at times very dangerously. There is precious little evidence of police activity, speed traps, etc., so I suppose they feel that they can get away with it. No authorities in evidence to incur the wrath of.

Arrived at the Hotel et Cie in Sainte Anne des Monts after a very relaxed drive. It is a motel, but not much evidence of mountains around here. It’s right in the middle of town, in a precinct area. Not very attractive, to be honest.

Spirits were not improved by finding that the hotel had us down only for one night, not the two we’d booked via Trailfinders. The receptionist booked us into the same room for two nights pending a satisfactory resolution of the issue (which, I’m glad to say, has now happened. Trailfinders have redeemed themselves somewhat after the debacle on Vancouver Island).

Breakfast is included, but this apparently takes the form of some kind of sandwich being delivered to our room! The time slot offered was from 6.30 to 9 a.m. We opted for 9 a.m., to no one’s surprise. Weird.

The room is fine, but once again we are wondering what there is to see and do round here. Something we can work on tomorrow, for sure. We are right on the estuary of the mighty St. Lawrence River here and there appears to be a substantial national park nearby.

There is an onsite restaurant which doesn’t take reservations, so we turned up early (6 p.m.) and were squeezed into a very busy bar/bistro, French being spoken universally. We managed to place an order for both food and wine, despite this, which was surprisingly good and, by Canadian standards, quite reasonably priced.

This may give a better idea of where we are now:

We have two more stops – Percé and Carleton-sur-Mer – before we actually leave the province of Québec and venture into New Brunswick.

Sorry that this has been a rather more boring post than usual, and hopefully we’ll have something of greater interest to report tomorrow.

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