Tagged ‘Newfoundland‘

Mighty Saint Lawrence

Yet another amazing adventure with Adventure Canada, this time aboard the Ocean Endeavour; a 6 deck, 124 crew and 199 passenger ship, as we discovered…. built in the Szczecin Stockyard, Poland.


We departed from Quebec city on june 1st, and made our way up and down the Saguenay Fjord, the mouth of the Saguenay, a playground displaying amongst others, the endangered beluga whales.

The first stop was at the confluence of the Saguenay and Saint Lawrence rivers; the Quebec village of Tadoussac.  Established at an Innu settlement, it was France’s first trading post on the mainland of New France. With its whaling centre and Chauvin’s first fur trading post, it is a picturesque  town…even in the fog.


Next….the south coast of the Lower Saint Lawrence; the famed Reford Gardens. Despite the very few flowers blooming at this time of the year, the serene gardens are were still beautiful.


Further up the Saint Lawrence, we disembarked at Gaspé Peninsula Forillon National Park, where we were greeted by fog; a lot of fog. As we hiked the 7.8km loop towards the top of Mont St. Alban the fog got so thick that the view from the top of the observation tower was a milky mass in every direction.


Onwards to Percé Rock and Bonaventure National Park where the largest colony of 50,000 pairs of gannets can be found. And they were…found…on every ledge of the rock!

Bonaventure Island

A kids zodiac around Percé Rock and a whale sighting for the excited kids made Alexander’s day.

Perce Rock

Next stop was rainy PEI….but the rain made the sand look especially red, so we enjoyed the colour and ignored the weather!


Nova Scotia: an amazing hike along the picturesque Skyline trail in Cape Breton Highland National Park, with views of the Cabot trail and the sea and an occasional surfacing whale.

skywalk trail

Skyline Trail

And more fog on day 8, and a tropical storm bypassing Ile de Madelaine, towards St. Pierre.

fog on the St. Lawrence

Ile de Sein or Sailor’s Island was another stunning foggy stop. This 1 km long island belonging to St.Pierre and Miquelon once inhabited, now lies deserted a few km off shore with its little colourful houses scattered all over.

Sailor Island

Cemetery on Sailors' Island

The French island of Saint Pierre and Miquelon, with its population of 6000, and 5000 cars, lies about 700km south off the coast of Newfoundland. Yet another picturesque town, and this time we had sun!!

Saint Pierre

Coming up to the Narrows we were greeted by sun, an iceberg, and a spec with a green hat…Sean.



And finished the trip off with a beautiful hike on my favourite part of the east coast trail in Pouch Cove.

Pouch Cove


Gros Morne National Park

Newfoundland never ceases to disappoint, and having finally made the trip out to Gros Morne National Park; UNESCO world heritage site, I continue to be humbled by the beauty of yet another beautiful place in this incredible province.

The second largest Park in eastern Canada, spanning at 1,805 kmof western Newfoundland , Gros Morne is a part of the towering Long Range Mountains.

Gros Morne

Making Trout River Campground, in the southern part of the park, our base, Sean, Alexander and I explored its diverse landscapes over a few days, juggling hikes and scenic drives, through various weather conditions.


Tablelands Trail: This 4-km, trail show cases a time when the continents of Africa and North America collided, pushing rocks originally beneath the ocean to their present position on land. Ending at a waterfall you can turn back or keep hiking up the earth’s mantle, to the top of the tablelands for an expansive vista. Adding on another two hours we took the challenge and scrambled up rocks, reaching almost to the last remaining patches of snow.

On the short drive back the campsite, we watched as the setting sun lit up the tablelands giving them a golden glow.



The constantly changing weather provided amazing clouds that enveloped the mountains, hills and lakes, and just as quickly released them from its hold.


The lazy day hike was a 3km stroll on a boardwalk over marshes, ending at a dock on Western Brook Pond. There we took a boat between stunning glacier-carved rock walls, on a ten-mile long lake also called a freshwater fjord.



14km Trout River Pond Hike; one of the least traversed hikes in the park, took us through 4km of low-lying forest and along the lake, eventually coming out onto open, rocky plains and ending at the trail head with a quick lunch before heading back to Trout River Campground.

Trout River Hike Gros Morne


The Lookout Trail was a steady uphill climb, in parts along a boardwalk, emerging on a plateau with breathtaking view of Gros Morne Mountain from Partridgeberry Hill.



The North side of the park had a completely different landscape, with a rugged coastline. The 6km return Coastal Trail once connected two small fishing communities: Bakers Brook and Green Point and leads you by cobble beaches, through dense coastal stunted forests known locally as “tuckamore.”




At low tide the limestone conglomerate at Cow Head is exposed to reveal layers, worn by waves into rugged shelves and cliffs marking the collapse of an ancient tropical reef.


Newfoundland 2013

Going out to Newfoundland for this year’s show titled Anchor, was yet another amazing and inspiring trip out east. Starting with a great write up in The Telegram , and a successful show, it was followed by unbelievable weather throughout the week…. almost too beautiful; sunny and bright; perfect for hiking. Not quite the moody, foggy landscape that draws me to Newfoundland, but inspiring nevertheless. We visited old friends and met some more wonderful people.

James Baird Gallery in Pouch Cove, NF

The Factory - East Coast Trail

Alexander and I stayed at “The Factory” once again; a former cod liver oil factory with the press still in the basement.

We started our hikes on the east coast trail right from our yard, picking blueberries and chanterelles on the way of course, since it was august, and even had a first run in with a moose on one of the inland trails, Finally, after twelve years of coming to Newfoundland I got to see a moose, snap an unfocused photo and turn right around and leave, abandoning our path.

east coast trail


Newfoundland 2010

I have been coming to Newfoundland since 2001 when there was an artist residency in Pouch Cove, run by James Baird whom I was introduced to by artist friends Dan Hughes and Richard Stipl. There was a great studio space in an old restaurant building right on a rock overlooking crashing waves and the foggy coast. It is now James’ home. You could watch the thin band of light appear over the horizon at sunrise around 4:30, then go back to sleep, then wake up to whales spouting water a few hours later right in front of that same window.

When the residency closed down I continued to return to Pouch Cove, painting at an old schoolhouse which he had also converted to studios and later at a small cottage a few minutes away, which once used to be a cod liver oil factory, and now stands alone at the start of the Bruce Trail. The window view inspired me to do a number of live sketches of the ocean which later rturned into studio paintings

This year I had an opportunity to share my love for this province with my son and my father as well as exhibit a body of work titled Ode to the Sea in st.John’s, based on the bond I developed with the Atlantic Ocean.

Newfoundland continues to be an everlasting inspiration to me as a painter and despite so many beautiful places I have been which could easily rival it continues to be my favourite place to spend summer and fall months.