We had a lovely week in the Bras d'Or Lakes, which make up a lot of the interior of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. The lakes are entered from the west through a canal with locks at St Peter, but are open to the ocean on the eastern side, so the water is less salty than the ocean and a lot warmer.
The lakes have hills, towns, islands and a gazillion coves to anchor in. The waves never kick up too big (which we appreciate in a boat with no stabilizers) and in a short trip, you can move from one interesting place to another. We met up with Lisa and Dave on Ke 'Ola Kai on our first night - they were on their way back to St Peter after a week in the lakes - and rafted up for brats on the grill.
We then headed to Baddeck on the northern lake. Alexander Graham Bell had a home there and they have a National Historic Site with information about his life and inventions. The home is still used by the family, but is visible on the point near town.
John and Jane rented a car and we spent a day driving the Cabot Trail - a road that circles Cape Breton with glorious views of the headlands and ocean. We stopped for a swim at Ingonish Beach where you can swim in the ocean then walk over to a fresh water lake (much warmer water!). We had a perfect sunny day for the drive and did get a few short walks in to see a bog and old forest stand of maple trees.
The next day, John and Jane headed for the fort at Louisberg and Jeff and I waxed the boat - such fun! I rewarded myself with a visit to the Baaddeck Yarns store and got a few new skeins for projects. It almost made the work of waxing worthwhile. We certainly miss the Able Seamen, David and Adam, who are the best waxers I know.
We reached our farthest East point on the trip when we anchored in a cove in the East Bay of the lakes, so we are now heading west and south. We've come a long ways from Bayfield, Wisconsin!
After a night back in St Peter to stock up with water and groceries and do laundry, we passed back through the canal and into the Atlantic. We had good weather, so took advantage of it and went a long day, ending up in Little Liscomb Harbor for the night. The ocean is wavy and even with little wind, it was a rolly ride. We started with sun, but a cloud bank moved in and by the time we anchored, we had the fog horn sounding and were finding our way with GPS.
The next morning was foggy and windy. We moved back out into the open water, but the water was way too bouncy for comfort. We ducked back into the Liscomb River and found smooth water and lots of fog. A few miles up river was the Liscomb Lodge where we found a number of sailboats and another trawler savoring the calm. We dinghied to the lodge for lunch, swim in the pool and watching the women's soccer match in the Olympics - Canada vs. USA. We rooted for both teams and it was a great game.
Today was foggy, but the seas have settled and with GPS and radar, we made good progress on our way to Halifax. We should be there early tomorrow in time for the Busker Festival and getting the dinghy motor fixed. Sally