Hiking Away Care

This morning, the sun was up early, and so was I. After three mausy days of cold and wet, I was ready for a more productive day. At 8:30 a.m., I thought that meant getting some laundry out and finishing a couple of workshops I’ve been writing. By 8:35, when Thomas appeared, I realized that wasn’t enough. He suggested we hike southbound along the East Coast Trail, a direction we hadn’t taken yet. Funny how quickly I agreed to this idea. And Nina, who’s been waiting for a long hike all week, put up no argument.

Yesterday when the weather broke for a couple of hours, Thomas and Nina and I hiked northbound on the trail, to collect a few more blueberries for dinner. The northbound trail looks like this. I was eager to see whether the southbound trail was as beautiful.

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After feeding the goats and chickens, I got the laundry on the line while Thomas made us lunches for the day’s adventure. And then, we were off to explore the southbound trail.

Here’s the first shot I took of Pouch Cove as we entered the trail.

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And here’s the rather lovely entrance to our day’s adventure.

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With each step, I gasped. In all my travels, I haven’t been so smitten with any landscape as I was with this one.

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As we travelled farther down the coast, the view seemed to become more rugged and more enchanting.

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There are several coves to visit along this trail. We made it to two: Shoe Cove and Blackhead Cove (the second not being listed on this sign)

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Here are a few images I took of the lovely Shoe Cove.

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Each time we reached another point, I took a shot of Pouch Cove, growing ever more distant. It looks like we hiked for miles, but really it was only a short distance as the crow flies. However, because we kept stopping to gasp and take photos, the hike took us nearly five hours to complete.

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At Blackhead Cove, we stopped to eat lunch. Nina was very happy for some water and a share of our meal. Thomas even pulled out a couple of dog cookies he’d carried in his pocket.

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At this stage, I was beginning to feel my age. We headed back, figuring it would take us a couple of hours to retrace our steps. My legs felt like India rubber and my joints played tricks on me, especially on the descents. Even the squirrels made fun of me as we walked.

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Thomas, ever the gentleman, distracted me with stories from his life as a student and then a developer in Germany, about his family and friends, and about his travels across Canada this summer. When I sighed and asked what he thought we should have for dinner (dreading the preparation of it) he suggested we go to the one restaurant in Pouch Cove, called the Water Witch. It’s only takeout, but oh that sounded heavenly. Just the thought of fish and chips (and some hot onion rings!) kept us both moving along the trail. The trail itself never ceased to inspire.

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Back home with our takeout, we were immediately met by Furface (pronounced Ferfachay) andĀ Montana,

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hitched the goats out to pasture for a couple of hours,

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collected seventeen eggs from the hen house (“So, quiche for lunch tomorrow?” I asked Thomas. “Ya, quiche,” he agreed pretty quickly), fed Nina

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and then tucked into our own meal.

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We accomplished enough to feel productive today, and then hiked away any cares we’d gathered this week with the weather and our inexperience as organic farmers. Hiking this East Coast Trail, designed partly by our own farmer, Elke Dettmer, is itself quite an accomplishment.

And now, exactly twelve hours after our adventures were agreed on, it’s early to bed! After all, we have another day tomorrow. Organic farming is the berries.

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