NYC - Trans Lab - Newfoundland - Nova Scotia

Discussion in 'Americas' started by ADV NY, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. ADV NY

    ADV NY unsportsmanlikeTAGER

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    NYC - Trans Lab - Newfoundland - Nova Scotia
    Hey all,
    I am planing on taking off from NYC June 16th to ride the Trans Lab then return back via Newfoundland and Nova Scotia and doing the Cabot trail. I am planing on riding 300-400 miles a day. I will have camping gear but I am planing on staying at B&B's, Motel's or hotels. I figure the trip will be 3600-4000 miles and about two weeks give or take. At this point I am riding solo. If this is of interest to anyone else, your more then welcome to jump in. I have my stops in Montreal, Quebec and Labrador mapped out as for Newfoundland and Nova Scotia I will plan on the fly as there are more options for places to stay/eat and get gas.
    #1
  2. firefighter651

    firefighter651 Adventurer

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    When you hit North Sydney,the coffee is my treat.If you need anything shoot me a PM.
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  3. ADV NY

    ADV NY unsportsmanlikeTAGER

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    For sure I will drop you a line when I get to Newfoundland to work out the details. Thanks for offer.
    #3
  4. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

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    If you're looking to stay at motels/etc pretty much the whole trip, you'll want to plan out your Trans-Lab segments. Your options are basically limited to Relais Gabriel, Lab City, Churchill Falls, Happy Valley-Goose Bay, and Port Hope Simpson.

    Newfoundland will be a little easier though... but even there, you might want to plan ahead a little so you don't find yourself searching for a motel as the sun's going down. There can still be significant distances between options.

    Enjoy the trip -- I've done it twice and still want to go back again.

    --mark
    #4
  5. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

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    In addition to markbvt..here are a few more suggestions BUT these were had in 2008...might still be viable, although no Phase III then yet!

    ******************************

    Great & most excellent information and planning....TLH
    <!-- #dg-post-title --><!-- message -->This was posted by rdwalker(gnarly adventurer) who gets credit for taking the time to give you all food for thought and has just about everything that needs to be said in planning to do the TLH loop.

    Cheers, YOUR MAN THAT WAS ON THE ROAD



    Planning information



    <HR style="COLOR: #575757" SIZE=1>
    <!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->Here are some planning resources that could be useful for anyone else considering a ride along the Trans-Lab.

    Good luck!



    Planning Resources.

    --> Maps & Info:

    Newfoundland and, in particular, Labrador is off most tourists' radar screens. Your typical maps will have very little detail on the area. North Coast of the St. Lawrence River is not shown on your AAA publications; forget about the Trans-Labrador itself.


    Online mapping services, like Google Maps or Mapquest offer fairly good resources for trip planning (just ignore the outlandish travel-time estimates).

    I love paper maps, though: nothing but an unfolded sheet offers the large scale overview together with the depth of detail. I always enjoy the sense of adventure when randomly perusing a map. The smell of fresh ink, the exotic names in faraway locations really do it for me.

    The provincial government publishes a very good road map of Newfoundland and Labrador. It can be obtained just for the asking, together with some brochures, from their tourist offices at: http://www.newfoundlandlabrador.com/ .

    JDMGeo (www.MapArt.com) publishes very good maps of Quebec, although the really interesting sections of Trans-Quebec-Labrador and of James Bay Road are not shown.

    A big community at your service: www.ADVrider.com, of course.
    Newfoundland riding : www.ridetherock.com/forums
    Specific sections of Labrador:
    www.labradorwest.com, www.labradorcoastaldrive.com
    Trans-Lab web page: http://tlhwy.com/



    --> Communications.

    Immediately upon entering Newfoundland, my GSM mobile phone stopped working. In towns, I have seen a lot of people yakking away; judging by the pull-out antennas, they still had analog service. And of course, once out of town and in Labrador there is no cellular coverage. I did not re-acquire digital service until reaching Forestville on St. Lawrence River in Quebec.

    In other words, be prepared for not having mobile service for many days. In order to communicate, you should have access to an 800 (toll-free) service that allows you to make calls from hotels or private land phones. AT&T is one provider of such service (although pricy). I also have Primus Communications' Global Access card (http://www.affinitytele.com/c-cards.htm), which offers toll-free call-in numbers throughout the world; I have been using their card extensively during this trip. Note that some payphones in Canada do block toll-free access calls.

    For the main section of Trans-Labrador Highway, the provincial Department of Transportation provides free emergency satellite phones. These are capable of only dialing 911 and can be signed in and out for 24-hour periods in selected locations in the four towns between Goose Bay and Labrador City.


    --> Time Zones.

    On Ferries: all scheduling is done on Ship's Time, which is announced and displayed throughout. Make a note what time zone is in use, or you may miss breakfast or oversleep landing.

    Quebec: bulk of the province, accessible by road from Montreal / Quebec City uses Eastern Time. North Coast section (Blanc-Sablon) runs on Atlantic Time.

    New Brunswick and Nova Scotia: Atlantic Time (1hr ahead of Eastern).

    Newfoundland: Newfoundland Time (another 1/2hr ahead of Atlantic, i.e., hour-and-half from Eastern).

    Labrador: section immediately across the Strait from Newfoundland (L'Anse au Clair) in on Newfoundland time. All of the rest (Cartwright, Goose Bay and west) is on Atlantic time.

    All zones observe Daylight Time.


    --> Ferries.

    Reaching Happy Valley - Goose Bay via the Maritime Provinces requires sailing on several ferries. I strongly recommend spending the night on the long runs: it saves riding days and substitutes for hotels. Booking a cabin is very useful; it allows for comfort, privacy and security for your belongings.

    The ferry I took from Nova Scotia to Newfoundland was fairly modern; I understand that so are the other ones on that route. Cabins contained bathrooms with showers, quite convenient.

    The Goose Bay ferry seems to be living out its days after retiring from service around Jutland Peninsula - even the signage is still in Danish. It is a bit rough around the edges; bathrooms and toilets are in a common area. I would not be surprised if this route is terminated once Phase III connector of Trans-Labrador Highway opens, between Cartwright and Goose Bay.

    Reservations on all of them are a must if you desire a cabin. They are recommended just for the passage as well, although I do understand that a lone rider with a motorcycle is always somehow fit in.

    The routes between North Sydney, NS and Port-aux-Basques, NL, as well as the seasonal connection to Argentia, NL, are serviced by Marine Atlantic:
    http://www.marine-atlantic.ca/

    Newfoundland to Labrador crossing and the Goose Bay ferry are operated by Labrador Marine:
    http://www.labradormarine.com/

    On the other side of the run, in Quebec, there are several ferries crossing St. Lawrence River. These may be of interest if a side trip on Gaspe Peninsula is in your cards. Despite repeated announcements to the contrary, the Trois Pistoles - Les Escoumins connection seems to be gone for good, but the remaining routes are:

    Baie-Comeau / Godbout - Matane:
    http://www.traversiers.gouv.qc.ca/tr...ection=%C9t%E9

    Further west there is the Rimouski - Forestville route. Note that some English-language pages do not work too well on the ferry companies' Web sites. For schedules, just dig into the French sections - you should be able to figure them out. 'Horaire' is schedule, everything else is self-explanatory.
    http://www.traversier.com/accueil.html

    Finally, St-Simeon - Riviere-du-Loup:
    http://www.traverserdl.com/e/horaire/sim-06.htm


    --> Fuel:

    Once in northern Newfoundland and through the whole length of Trans-Lab highway, there is no premium fuel (except, maybe, in Goose Bay and Fermont). Also, some rural stations in New England carry only regular gas. Your bike must be able to handle regular.


    The longest distance between fuel stations is about 300km (~ 200 miles) between Goose Bay and Churchill Falls.



    --> Repair Shops.

    Atlantic Motoplex (only BMW dealer in the Maritimes)
    950 Champlain Street, Dieppe, NB E1A 1P8
    506-383-1022
    www.atlanticmotoplex.ca

    RPM Cycle
    168 Main St., Dartmouth, NS B2X 1S2
    902-434-8516
    www.rpmcycle.ca

    Steve's Cycle Truro
    1279 MacCallum Settlement Rd.,
    MacCallum Settlement, B6L 6V4
    902-893-2581
    stevescycle@z6.com

    Adrian's (x-BMW shop)
    80 King Street, Moncton, NB E1C 4M6
    506-382-0262

    (Mike) Milligans Cycle Works
    2271 Mountain Road, Moncton?
    854 4555

    Darren Tapley
    All-Euro, Halifax NS

    Ed Barkhouse
    Procycle, Dartmouth NS

    Keith Windsor
    The Toy Box
    St. John's, NL



    --> Hotels.

    On my blitz tours, I usually do not skimp but try to stay in fairly nice places. My trips are expensive simply because I pay for my own time off work - cost of a hotel is then not as significant.

    When selecting accommodations, I prefer a hotel that has a restaurant on premises - unless in a city, where everything is within walking distance. I like to clean up in the evening, then have a nice dinner and some good wine; I do not want to be riding anymore.

    Having Internet access is quite important as well. It's a valuable travel tool: not only to check email, but also to find out local weather, schedules, make or cancel reservations, and so on. Fortunately, Wi-Fi is becoming more and more prevalent in most establishments.

    Below are places I used on this trip. I have been fortunate to be able to recommend them to all.

    Planning note: all accommodations in Newfoundland and Labrador are very busy during the brief tourist and construction season. Reservations are essential. At the very least, keep a list of possible hotels and call ahead.


    In most common destinations: Holiday Inn Express (www.ichotelsgroup.com). These are standardized, clean and comfortable locations, with good services and Wi-Fi. Dinner, however, may be an issue. On this trip, I used them in Seabrook, NH and in Moncton (Dieppe), NB.


    Rocky Harbour, Newfoundland:
    Ocean View Motel
    Phone: 709-458-2730, http://www.oceanviewmotel.com
    Good facilities, restaurant, pub, Wi-Fi.


    Mary's Harbour, Labrador:
    Riverlodge Hotel
    709-921-6948, www.riverlodgehotel.com
    Here you are a bit off the tourist track; don't worry about Internet access. When planning on late arrival, check on dining room times - kitchen closes early.


    Wabush, Labrador:
    Wabush Hotel
    709-282-3221/3222
    Formerly a grand place, now very busy during road-building season, filled with construction crews. Still, has all the facilities and is the best (if not only) hotel in town. Reservations are a must! Wi-Fi spotty.


    Baie-Comeau, Québec:
    Le Grand Hôtel
    48, Place Lasalle
    1-888-838-8880, http://www.legrandhotel.ca
    This town-center hotel is being renovated right now and can be a bit disorganized. Still, the owner may himself guide you around the building to park your bike next to his Fat Boy. Wi-Fi spotty.


    Québec City, Québec:
    Chateau Laurier
    1220 Place George-V Ouest
    (800) 463-4453 www.vieux-quebec.com
    This is one of my favorite places to stay in Quebec City, a modern upscale hotel, yet often in CAD$170 range. Great amenities and Wi-Fi, underground garage. Just on the outside of Old City walls and next to restaurant strip of Grande Allee.
    Note that motorcycles are not allowed in Old City; thank you, loud pipes.



    Woodstock, VT:
    Lincoln Inn
    802-457-3312 www.lincolninn.com
    Quite upscale - yet not expensive; nice restaurant and pub. Very friendly and helpful staff. Wi-Fi is advertised - but I was too tired to try...

    Cheers..........



    <!-- / message --><!-- sig -->
    #5
  6. ADV NY

    ADV NY unsportsmanlikeTAGER

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    Kick Ass, thanks for the all the great info. I have the stops planed in Labrador, Newfound land I figure as long as I get down to the south west of the Island I will have a few options on where to stay. I will plan a day a head as I go. I figure Newfoundland and Nova Scotia I can slow down and enjoy the area.
    #6
  7. yellowtiger99

    yellowtiger99 n00b

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    You are in for a really great time! I did went in 2010 and will be returning this August. I suggest you check out www.ridetherock.com. They will give you all the information you need on NF and Labrador. My trip was just over 5000 miles. I spent extra time checking out Nova Scotia, NF and the Gaspe Peninsula. I did the trip counter-clockwise. If you are more interested in riding off road you should look into the T'Railway in NF. That is my plan in August. I don't know when the black flies come around but you might want to bring a head net. Will help you keep your sanity while in Labrador. If you end up camping be sure to bring a tent that doesn't need stakes. NF is also called 'the Rock'. I camped the whole way and didn't make that connection last time.
    #7
  8. ADV NY

    ADV NY unsportsmanlikeTAGER

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    I went up to TCAT ride last year and learn the hard way about the flies LOL, thats the one thing I am not looking forward to:lol3
    #8
  9. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

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    No Problemo.....

    [​IMG]
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  10. ADV NY

    ADV NY unsportsmanlikeTAGER

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    40 day count down, bump if anyone is interested :deal
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  11. Scipior1200gs

    Scipior1200gs Wandering

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    How much time have you planned for the trip? I am thinking of doing a similar trip (or similar parts) in June.

    Abenteuerfahrer, great info in your post! Thanks,
    #11
  12. ADV NY

    ADV NY unsportsmanlikeTAGER

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    thinking 15 days give or take.
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  13. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

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    Anytime..need more info just buzz here.

    Now you guys: Scipior1200gs and Adv NY do Phase III for me but/and don't feed the Wolves :eek1!

    [​IMG]

    Cheers....
    #13
  14. jlmoulto

    jlmoulto Adventurer

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    Check out ridetherock.com for local information
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  15. Scipior1200gs

    Scipior1200gs Wandering

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    Unfortunately, I don't have the time to do the whole trans lab, need to stay in the one week range. May just try the NS, Newfoundland side of things, save the trans-lab for later. ADV NY, bet your trip s going to be great.
    #15
  16. ADV NY

    ADV NY unsportsmanlikeTAGER

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    I am hoping it is, just broke a wisdom tooth (making me dumber). I am really hoping I can have it pulled in time that it does not effect the trip. I knew that the dentist wanted to pull all four of them a month ago, but figured I would do it after the trip to avoid any complications, Opps I just I screwed up holding off :eek1.
    #16
  17. Scipior1200gs

    Scipior1200gs Wandering

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    I'll stay in touch, if you are going clockwise I might be able to link up w/u in Newfoundland or NS. Good luck with the tooth.
    #17
  18. kelsow

    kelsow Long timer

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  19. Scipior1200gs

    Scipior1200gs Wandering

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    ADV NY - what is your plan for lodging between Goose Bay and Blanc Sablon, that is a long leg, even to Cartwright.
    #19
  20. hoozr

    hoozr Adventurer Supporter

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    was at North Sydney a couple years back -- check on lead time to take the ferry == three day wait last time I was there
    #20