Day 62 – 9th September (Caraquet to Miramichi)

Caraquet as a town has little to recommend it, to be honest. Nice bits to it, but not of itself particularly pretty or interesting. The historic Acadian village and the restaurant saved it to some extent.

Overall, New Brunswick as a province appears not to have the level of investment afforded to neighbouring Québec. The Canadian Exchequer probably cleans up big-time on Montréal and Québec. No such goldmine exists in New Brunswick – the capital is Fredericton (which I did not know) with a population of about 75,000.

To more pragmatic matters. 4 minutes’ walk up the road was a boulangerie which suited us just fine for breakfast, after having checked out of the motel. Far better than Tim Hortons…..

As sort of planned, so that we could see more of the country hereabouts, we headed to the islands of Lamèque and Miscou.

Flat as a pancake and not really all that interesting, but we pressed on anyway towards Miscou lighthouse, right at the northern end of this leg.

We were rewarded by a most engaging visit to both the lighthouse and the accompanying café.

The lighthouse ceased operation in 2000
This is the road number of the lighthouse. I cannot conceive of any road in the UK getting anywhere near that

Now follow some rather poor photos, I’m afraid, of information boards, but I hope you can make something of them, as I think they are very interesting. It saves me having to write screeds of stuff, anyway…

Abridged history of the lighthouse

We deigned to enter the lighthouse itself, and paid the $6 each to climb the 96 steps up to the very top, interspersed by levels with yet more interesting information boards.

Few people lived in this area as it was so remote. The number of worshippers, weddings, etc., was very small.

We got to the top of the lighthouse to be rewarded with some great views.

There was a guide there, ready to answer any questions about the lighthouse. Its original lighting system could shine around 24 km out to sea, but the new-fangled, much smaller LED light (see later) could shine double that distance. These shores are shallow, rocky and treacherous to shipping.

Final flight of steps up to the top
The descent of the staircase, built in 2008
Back to ground level

We went to the café for coffee (me), tea and cake (Jean). It’s a really nice space and it was an excellent, proper coffee. Far better than the Starbucks style crap I’d been subjected to thus far.

It’s run by a husband and wife team who had moved from Montréal about a year ago to escape big-city life. God knows how they make a profit – apparently this area gets something like 2 metres of snow in the winter! 😱 The very best of luck to them.

We exited the café to get a picture of the LED light that now replaces the old lighthouse light. Far less romantic, but far more effective.

A truly worthwhile diversion.

Time came to head to our next destination – the Rodd Miramichi River.

Another smooth and uneventful journey – no arguing with Google Maps this time. On the way, we saw this extraordinary collection of boats, all on dry land. No idea what this was all about.

We arrived at the first proper hotel we’ve stayed in for quite a while. It’s in a lovely position alongside the huge Miramichi River, apparently one of the great salmon rivers of Canada, but we were disappointed not to get a room with a river view. We tried to get this changed, but no dice. All taken. It is the weekend, after all.

Nice big room – queen bed each again – and booked a table in the onsite restaurant.

Partook of a stir-fry with some proper veg in it! Such a nice change. It was very tasty and extraordinarily good value. It’s one of the least expensive full meals we’ve had since this trip started.

Great sunset, too.

Another much fuller day that we’d been expecting.

No formal plans for tomorrow – the laundry issue is getting pressing – but this is a city – yes, it has a basilica, apparently – of some 20,000 people, so we should be able to find something to see and do. Exactly what, you’ll have to find out tomorrow if you’re interested!

2 responses to “Day 62 – 9th September (Caraquet to Miramichi)”

  1. how did you manage to climb all those stairs with your bad kness?
    sounds a nice meal you had with veg and no chips
    looks very picturesque where you ate your meal

    1. Going up is quite a bit easier than going down, Adele. Some days are better than others.

      It’s quite difficult to find a lot of variety on the diet, so yes, this was a nice change.

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