Return trip

3 June 2011: We spent the morning washing clothes and catching up on email, etc. We finished up the rest of the crab we had put in the freezer after not being able to eat them all in Trepassey.

The new crew arrives tomorrow but probably after we depart.

We are making arrangements to deliver a car to Maine for a cruising couple in St. John’s. This will work well for all of us and will make keeping track of all our gear much easier. The ferry is not running yet from Argentia so we will be driving all the way across NFLD – about 550 miles to catch the ferry at Port aux Basques. We have been cautioned not to drive at dusk or dark. The moose are out in force and much worse this year than normal. We may make it a two day trip to PauxB. We will be driving two cars from Nova Scotia to Maine.

Running Free St. John's

Running Free and Screech at floating dock, St. John's

5 June 2011: Judy and I had dinner and breakfast with relatives of some of our Ontario friends. It was wonderful to meet them and share Newfoundland fare.

On Saturday we brought Carl to the airport to meet his new crew for the crossing to Ireland. Then we set out West across interior Newfoundland in the car we are delivering to Maine. Driving across this magnificent rock is much different than poking into the ports along the coast.

We stopped at an information center along the way and called for reservations on the overnight sailing of the ferry from Port aux Basques to North Sydney for Sunday night. We reserved a cabin and plan to get a night’s sleep before we arrive in Nova Scotia. We will then drive along Bras d’Or Lake to retrieve our car in Dundee. We will drive both cars to Maine where we will deliver the RAV4.

6 June 2011: We drove to Port aux Basques yesterday (Sunday) to catch the ferry to North Sydney NS. We arrived in PauxB a few hours early and took the opportunity to drive along a spectacular coastline to the end of the road at Rose Blanche.

Rose Blanche lighthouse

We passed tortured, wind-swept rugged coastline to the beautiful Rose Blanche lighthouse. It is said to be among the last manned lighthouses in North America – but is no longer manned. It has been restored and presents a spectacular sight on the coastal rocks.

We went to the ferry terminal to check in and drove the car on board and found our cabin. It was a smooth crossing (foggy), we got some sleep, a shower (!), and drove off this morning into the Nova Scotia fog. We are now having breakfast in Baddeck, NS. We will retrieve our car today and make plans for the drive home.

8 June 2011: Here is an update on our return trip. We got to Dundee and retrieved our car. It started right up, no problem. But I noticed that the alternator light was lit. I fetched a voltmeter – it read about 12 volts – not charging voltage. Further examination: alternator belt was broken. It also turns the cooling pump so the car could not be driven.

Parts store in Port Hawksbury had the belt. Fortunately, we had a car. I drove to town. People in the parts store asked if, perhaps, the alternator had seized. As a precaution, I also bought an alternator. Good thing. It had seized up. Charlie at the marina helped get the new one installed. Nasty job! Thanks Charlie.

We found a B&B close by. When I started to drive, the belts really squealed. A mechanic close to the B&B was able to get the belts tensioned and took care of a little excess rust on the brake rotor that caused a periodic thump.

We set out from Cape Breton Island Tuesday afternoon and got to the US border early evening. Clearing into the US was not smooth. I was driving the car we were delivering to Maine and Judy followed in our car. I was questioned about why I was driving a Florida car. I was sent inside to a supervisor to explain how I knew the owner and why I was driving his car. Why to Maine when the car was registered in Florida. They had a look at the contents and came back and said I could be on my way.

We found a motel in Jonesboro ME then delivered the car in Waldoboro around noon. We now have one car and are currently in a motel in Oneonta NY. We expect to be home on Friday.

10 June 2011: Judy and I arrived home this evening about 5:30 after driving from Chicago.

This is the end of our Bras d’Or to St. John’s portion of the trip. I will be going through my photos and will make another post or two discussing some of the later events as we traveled across Newfoundland and headed home.

I will also follow Running Free on their trip across the North Atlantic by posting any messages I get from them as they sail east. This will be located under the Running Free menu item above.

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