We gave a few people a 20 dollar bill and a disposable camera and told them to go away and have a Newfoundland adventure. The only rule was to not use your own car (bumming rides was okay.)
Angus Woodman is one that that survived…
I like to walk. So for my adventure, I wanted to walk the length of the city. Right from Mount Pearl to Torbay.
Now to some it may sound a touch crazy, but I assure you it’s a very nice walk. Thanks to the Grand Concourse trails, you can cover most of the distance in wooded paths, largely forgetting that you’re in the middle of a city. And depending on your chosen path, you can pass through any number of nice spots and make a day of it.
This is how my day went.
9:30am I leave the starting point — my brother’s house in Cowan Heights — and head for the Mount Pearl border. I soon find the city limit sign and give it a high-five.
9:52am I wander back into Mount Pearl looking for an entrance to the first trail — the old train tracks. I think that perhaps I should’ve looked at a map before I left the house. Eventually, I find it.
This particular morning was a wet one. The forecast claimed 2-4mm of rain. Enough to be annoying but not enough for me to cancel. This was a Newfoundland adventure, after all. So when I left the house in the morning and there was a little light rain I thought nothing of it. But then the clouds got darker. And darker. And darker. By mid-morning it had gone from intermittent-wipers rain to super-fast-wipers rain.
Still, I kept walking. Surely it would stop.
10:31am I arrive at the Bowring Park gates. As I’m getting out my camera, trying to keep it sheltered from the rain, I hear a loud thunderclap. Inside, the park is empty. It is nice to have the whole park to myself. Myself, and the ducks that is. They don’t seem to mind the rain.
10:49am Walking the trail, my phone rings. I answer it, trying not to get it too wet, and hear the voice of my brother. He says, “You know it’s raining, right?” Thanks.
11:11am Just as I think the rain can’t get any worse, it gets turned up to 11. I am soaked completely from head to toe. And then the rain stops completely. It takes no more than a blink or two. Soon the trail is glistening.
11:47am Downtown, I stop at Atlantic Place to see how much of myself I can dry off. I’m sure anyone who walked into the men’s room thought I was enjoying the hand dryers a little bit too much.
12:46pm After downtown, it head to Quidi Vidi Lake for lunch. I watch some rowing practise and eat my lunch. The Vienna Sausages go down smooth. (It’s just not a Newfoundland adventure without a tin of these!)
1:30pm From Quidi Vidi, I take the trail that runs along Virginia River. I veer off the trail for a bit and accidentally submerge both my feet just as they were getting dry again. Darn.
2:40pm The Virginia River trail ends and I head to Stavanger Drive. It is windy, busy, and I almost get hit by cars several times. This street was not made for walking.
3:03pm Torbay! My task completed, I turn around and head for the closest bus.
In the morning I got soaked, and in the afternoon I got sunburnt, but overall it was a very good walk indeed. Turns out, in Newfoundland you don’t need $20 to have an adventure. All you have to do is go outside.
HOW MUCH DID IT COST?
• Sandwich 3.29
• Banana 0.43
• Tin of sausages 1.09
• Biscuits 1.67
• Fruit bar 1.09
• Bus fare: 2.25
• Potato chips at Irving so I didn’t feel like a mooch for using their bathroom: 1.46
Total: 11.84 – The remaining 8.16 will be put towards a new foot.