Day 8: Harrington Harbour, Sept-Iles and Saint-Augustin
Posted by Terri
I woke up in Harrington Harbour at 5:30am, just as Dale and Michele were finishing up another sunrise shoot. Soon we were back at Jean’s for a great big homemade breakfast. As we ate, the fog rolled in and fastened itself to the Harbour.
Somewhat concerned about our chances of flying out, we were also somewhat delighted at the prospect of getting to spend another night in Harrington Harbour.
Without knowing which way the day would take us, we headed to the boat for the journey back to Chevery, and decided to leave it up to nature.
The marina was already buzzing with activity, with boats coming in to dock and small groups of fishermen relaying the early morning news.
As we cruised along the open water and the sun began to peek out through the pea soup sky, we knew the decision had been made – we were moving on.
Nicole picked us up on the other side of the bay and we just had enough time before our flight for a few more snaps. As we walked along the beach in Chevery, which looked like the backdrop of a Nicolas Sparks movie sans Channing Tatum, the fog all but disappeared, and we were soon on our way.
After spending the past seven days in tiny towns and villages throughout Northern Labrador and the Quebec Lower North Shore, Sept-Iles was a bit of a culture shock. With a population of 25,000, it’s one of the largest towns in the region. And it felt almost foreign to be in a place with more than one restaurant, let alone roads. But as we sipped americanos and lattes at the airport café, we soon acclimatized.
Outfitted with a new ride at the airport, we set out to see what Sept Iles had to offer in a very short amount of time. We started out with a visit to Le Vieux-Poste, a historical interpretation site that tells the story of the old Innu-French trading post. Then we made our way down to the waterfront boardwalk where Dale finally got to try out the only line of French he knows: je m’appelle jambon. Which loosely translates into my name is ham. Luckily, the folks at the artisan shops applauded his efforts, and we could always rely on Michele for actual French language assistance.
Next we hit Moisie Beach to check out the paddle boarders and general beach vibe. Along the way, we stopped into the Surf Shack and met friendly owners Fred and Sandra. They quickly welcomed us to come in and look around, obviously well accustomed to all sorts of random drop-ins.
Fred showed us one of his amazing hand-carved boards, which took him 60 hours to make. As I secretly plotted a way to fit it in my carry-on, Dale and Michele took Fred’s photograph back on the beach and planned a possible meet up in Tofino, relying on the universal language of surfing.
After the beach, we ate lunch on a deck overlooking the marina, enjoying the very warm afternoon soon. Then, once again, we headed back to the airport to catch our next flight.
We landed in Saint-Augustin just as the light was disappearing into the clouds. But not before we could see the hovercraft in the distance – our ride to town. Now while this is probably a major inconvenience if you have to do it every day, for us, it was another adventure, and we were totally game. In fact, we think every town should have a hovercraft.
We made it across Saint-Augustin River on our awesome ride just in time for a quick but delicious bite at Le Restaurant des Soeurs (The Sisters). After a quick scout around town in the dark, we got work downloading the day that was. It would be another short visit, but we were determined to pack as much in as possible.
Thanks to Greta for the wheels and the hospitality, and Air Labrador’s Michelle and Barb for the sunny lunch, Nicole for the pick up, Fanny, Jodina, and Jennifer for the big smiles, Natalie for the Saint Augustin welcome, and our pilots Simon, Renee, Felix, and Chris for once again getting us there.