The last time I shared some memories of the Fundy area we ended at my teenage years. When I was getting ready to graduate from high school, I had a moment of feeling depressed because I was sad about all my activities ending and that I felt my life would be changing forever. The summer I graduated was when I met Mark and well, I was no longer depressed after that 🙂 . A lot of our dates were spent in Fundy park and the Fundy area. I was even able to work as a lifeguard at the Fundy pool for a couple summers in university which was fine with us, more time in Fundy! The Fundy region is special to us because of the memories we’ve had at different times in our lives and this time was extra special.
I have a very special guest for this week’s post in honour of Father’s Day. He is a special man in my life and the life of my kids. He is an awesome photographer, has a great sense of humour, is patient , kind and very generous. He has even developed some mean building skills in the past few years that have enhanced our cottage and saved us money. Without further ado, I introduce you to my better half , the one who makes me smile everyday and supports me in all I do. He is my partner in life, husband and father of my children- Mark Nicolle!
I feel honoured to be asked to contribute to this wonderful blog about the Road to Waterside. Thank you Sheila for asking if I would contribute today’s post and share some of my favourite photos of the area !
My father instilled in me a love for the outdoors with many fishing, hunting, camping trips, very often along the Fundy coast region. That love of the outdoors brought me continually to the Waterside and Fundy National Park region. By the time I could drive I was ‘down country’ more weekends than I wasn’t during the summers. I first met Sheila about 28 years ago around this time of year. On one of those ‘first dates’ we travelled the Road to Waterside on our way to Fundy National Park. We have travelled that road multitudes of times since then, and Lord willing many more times to come. I have been so blessed to be able to share my love of this region all over again through sharing it with our 2 children as they have grown up.
Through all of my relationship with Sheila and during our years of raising our children I have also had a passion for photography. 34 years ago I put down my lawn mowing money at a pawn shop and picked up my first ‘real’ camera. A few years after that I got a job in a camera shop that provided employment through high school, university, and for awhile after that. I have always enjoyed being able to ‘create’ images and to share things I have seen, thus the name of my photo web site www.marksawthis.com . I love to create images that are visually pleasing, but more than that, I like creating a visual journal. I do want to create an interesting image. An image that would share the beauty or interest that I am trying to capture. But what I believe we all love the most about our images is that memory, that feeling, that moment of our lives that a photograph can return us to.
With that in mind I want to share with you 13 images I have taken along the Road to Waterside. Images that are a journal of years of driving to a place I love , with people I love.
This is Anderson Lighthouse. It used to sit on a wharf at Waterside beach which has long since washed away. It now sits in Harvey at one end of the Shepody Dam Road. I love the image because the light was so eerie and soft, and the sky was so interesting. I have memories from the 1980s cutting across this dirt road on my way to my friend Chris’s Camp which was on Route 915.
Many will recognize Dickson Falls in Fundy National Park. I have more photos of Dickson Falls than any man should. This is one of my Favorites. I could probably dig out some film photos from before there were stairs and boardwalks at the base of the falls. Do you have photos of Dickson Falls in your collection ?
Owl’s Head is certainly one of the most recognizable geological features you see from Fundy National Park. The way it often catches and forces the Bay of Fundy fog upwards can look quite spectacular. This day had just the right amount of fog to be interesting to me. The crows in the foreground make this image one I have favourited. There are not many birds more common as the crow around these parts. But I’ve often thought of creating a collection of interesting crow photos.
This is probably my favorite photo of a deer / fawn. It was at Point Wolfe. Park staff had ‘flagged’ the path for the ‘Ship Haven Trail’ that was to be built the next year, so I thought I would get a sneak peek at the vistas it would offer. The sun was low, streaking through the tall trees. A doe had just walked over the ridge in front of me and I felt disappointed I had missed the opportunity to get a photo of it. Then behind her came this fawn. The first shutter release piqued her ear , and afforded this pose for my second. It was such a beautiful moment I almost didn’t care if the photo came out OK or not. It was such a memorable moment. Of course I did care that later when I developed the photos, I had an image that would be a favourite for the years to come.
I’m being verbose, I’ll babble less. This is Long Marsh Creek on Route 915 at the bridge where you turn off to the Cape Enrage Road. The timing made this image, ‘slack water’ that short time when there is very little movement in a tidal stream, sunset, freshly fallen snow. All these happened at the same time, and at the time I was driving past.
Cape Enrage lighthouse. How many have visited here before they restored the lighthouse keepers home, before the fences, before the gate and entrance fees ? This was the early rays of light bathing the cape in late fall.
Above from many moons ago, is my daughter during a visit to Mary’s Point. I like so many things about this image, mostly that it brings back the memory of a beautiful evening with my family. Below are our kids sauntering along the Dickson Falls trail in Fundy National Park.
Don’t like the weather ? Wait a few minutes and it will change. I have the feeling this saying is not unique to just the maritimes. But I do like the next 3 images and how they clearly show just how much impact the weather can have on how a place looks. I specifically like how Matthew’s Head in the distance just disappears completely by the third image. I like the drama in the sky in the first , the softness of the light in the second, and the highlights of the sun hitting the fog in the third These were taken from the driveway in Waterside. There’s a lesson somewhere in the fact that unsettled weather is what made these images valuable to me.
This image was sunrise at Redhead, before the latest bit of erosion removed some more of it. Yet another lesson for me to ‘seize the day’ , and to do things while you can.
I’ll end with a simple silhouette of the Great Blue Heron. For Sheila and I the great blue heron has come to represent our special place in Waterside. For years we have enjoyed watching them and we still feel a special awe when we see them gliding overhead to the marsh, standing motionless as they fish, or preening in the sun as they are perched along the treeline.
Thank you for tagging along this photo journey on the Road to Waterside. I hope you have many photos from the road trips that have meant so much to you in your lives. Take some time this week to dig them out and let them bring you back to the days when you captured them. Let us know about your favourite road trips.
Thank you so much Mark, that was beautiful. I love it all and you! Happy Father’s Day.
As a special thank you for following along and promoting our page and blog, we are giving away an 8 x 10 of any image you see on this post or on Mark’s website. We will do a random draw from any shares,likes and comments on this post or on our Facebook page “The Road to Waterside”. Draw will be made on Father’s Day!
I consider Mark and I to be somewhat discriminating and particular when it comes to our mussel game. We love a good serving of large, meaty mussels with some fresh bread and enough broth to dip that yummy bread into after the mussels have disappeared. We have been known to ask for more bread just for the yummy broth. Our first experience with having such mussels was when we were newly married and touring Cape Breton Island. We ended up at a restaurant where we ordered a bowl of mussels. They were amazing!! To this day, we always seem to compare the next plate of mussels to that first plate we shared as a couple in Cape Breton. We have had mussels in NB, PEI, NS , Maine and New Hampshire . We have cooked them ourselves or have had them served to us at very fancy restaurants. Any time we see them on a menu we always debate whether we should get them or not at the risk of being disappointed.
We were delighted this past weekend to indulge in some of the best mussels we’ve ever had at Octopus’s Garden Cafe in Alma, NB. I had seen a picture and description of this mussel dish on their Facebook page recently. I mentioned them to Mark as we were heading down Sunday afternoon and he suggested we stop there for lunch on the way to the cottage. He didn’t have to twist my arm to stop and try them !
Here is a photo of our actual plate with 1 or 2 mussels missing because we couldn’t contain ourselves 🙂
Octopus’s Garden Cafe is located on the left right beside Saprano’s Pizza ( another favourite for their donairs!!) as you are heading into Alma.
They are open for breakfast at 7 am and run to 10 pm for lunch and dinner . Here is a quote from their Facebook page about what they offer:
“We take care to specialize in fresh, local, high-quality food – served to you at affordable prices. Our cheese, meat, bread, eggs, milk, butter, hot sauces, honey, tea, jams, and maple syrup are all sourced from local producers. We serve fresh-roasted, organic, fair trade coffee and espresso. Most of our organically grown fruit and vegetables are right from our own farm. ”
At quick glance, I saw Armadale Dairy, ANC meats, Bay of Fundy lobster and scallops and lots of other local ingredients on the menu. They were getting the fresh pasta ready for dinner while we were there which seems to be quite popular! They were kind enough to prepare mussels for us at lunch because they had time to do it but it is usually a dinner feature.
Here are some other shots in the Cafe:
I want to get a couple of these prints by Eric Goggin at Destination Art http://destinationart.ca
They have lots of local art featured throughout the cafe as well. They also have live music featured from time to time. (My son just informed me their name is taken after a Beatles song- they really do love their music I guess). It was so nice to see this business supporting other locals and we in turn can support them.
I hope you can all get down and try the mussels or anything else on the menu!. It all looked delicious.
See you next time on ” The Road to Waterside”!
Wow where did those 4 days go? It was wonderful to be back in Waterside! I hope you all had a lovely long weekend. I had so many projects to tackle that the 4 days just flew by. I wanted to get them at least started before the season got underway. I hope some of you got to visit some of the businesses in Albert County who had an open house for the Fundy Studio Tour or maybe you got to Fundy or Cape Enrage for some of their grand openings and celebrations.
Here is a little recap of what we did:
This is our dining table and a chair in its current state:
I love the base but don’t like how my original paint job is looking on the top- I wanted a driftwood look but I am not loving it and wanted to try something different.
I sanded the table and seats all down to the original finish. I was going to try a new product by Homestead House called Stain and Finishing Oil but I couldn’t get the look I wanted on my samples.
So I went back to a layered look with just Fusion mineral paint. That way if I still don’t like it down the road I can still paint over it without any trouble. I’m still not sold on this look but it looks much better than my 1st go round. The kids think it looks the same as what I had before. I will keep you updated on what I do next. Any suggestions are appreciated!
The second project I wanted to do was reseal our IKEA counter tops. They are still looking good but I hadn’t sealed them again since we 1st installed them in 2015. When I went to take a soap dispenser off the counter when I got to the cottage Friday there was a slight black ring beside the sink and I knew some water had gotten under the surface. The counter tops just have a thin wood veneer on top and I was scared to sand too much but I heard you can do that to try to get stains, water damage ,etc out of it. I sanded it lightly but not sure I made much of a difference.
These are a couple before shots:
During: putting on the tung oil.
And the after: I don’t know if I see a difference. The counters appear richer and renewed in person but that spot beside the sink is still noticeable. I will need to be more careful with what gets left on the counters!!
We did get out for a short drive on Monday- I wanted to see the new pavilions and Visitor Center at Wolfe Lake and the Chignecto Recreation Area across from Chignecto campground. This new recreation area will have bikes for rent for many new trails that have opened up for bikers.
Here is the new visitor center at Wolfe Lake- it will also have a smaller version of the Fundy Guild’s gift shop here too.
The new outdoor recreation center isn’t completely finished but is in a similar style to the Visitor Center. We had a lovely chat with a staff person and I even tried out a couple bikes! I love bikes! One was a Fat bike and one was a Plus bike. It felt like I could ride anywhere or over anything with one of those! See the smile on my face 🙂 Would be fun to ride on Waterside beach! Even a couple of those kids behind me pretending not to know me tried out the Fat bike.
Outdoor Elements is the company from Sussex who will be in charge of bike rentals. They are also now in charge of boat rentals at Bennett Lake. We will miss “Sinc’s Boats” but look forward to what Outdoor Elements has to offer Fundy for further use and enjoyment of the Park. You can check out the Outdoor Elements website for information on rentals under their “Fundy Adventure Center” tab. (https://www.outdoorelements.ca/rent ) It looks like you will be able to book your bike, boat or camping experiencing online in the future. They are going to have a small retail outlet in Alma to hook you up for your outdoor essentials. They are hoping to have some packages in the future as well, teaming up with some local businesses for an even better experience! They will be offering winter adventures too so those of you who love to get out in winter will have choices in Fundy to stay active as well. They also have a Facebook page ” Outdoor Elements” or “Outdoor Elements-Fundy Adventure Center” so you can follow along with their updates and services as the season progresses. We love what they are doing so far!
Welcome to Fundy “Outdoor Elements” !
Since it’s my birthday tomorrow I thought I would share a little more about me and my background with the Fundy region. I love looking back at where people come from and reading their biographies so I thought it would be fun to go down memory lane to some familiar spots in Fundy where my family has spent some time. Some of these are priceless.
These 2 photos are oldies from my husband’s side of the family. I can see with our mutual love for the area it was inevitable we would be drawn together and want to build down there. When I see this sign I think of my son working at the the Fundy Guild gift shop last summer- he got lots of questions from people asking where Alma was, 🙂 Maybe we still need this sign up there!
It’s amazing how little this building has changed!! I’m glad the flowers are still as nice!
Summer of ’69- My Mom and Dad at Fundy with my grandparents at Bennett Lake before they headed off to UNB. These are some old pics so bear with me in the quality department. We are talking vintage here!
The playground and green space was and still is popular with families.
This was one of our favourite beaches to explore down in Alma at the border of the park when the tide was out. We were so disappointed to see what was done to this beautiful landscape this spring with the man made addition- totally changes the feel, view and memory of this special beach.
Some fun days camping at Headquarters- picking fiddle heads, getting lobster and sticky buns, going to the evening programs at the Amphitheatre, hiking- all wonderful memories.
Some of our favourite look out spots ( we would sometimes have extra kids tag along 🙂 )
One of our favourite spots for picnics! Can’t believe this look off area is the same!!
Had to include this last one since it’s just down the road from our place in Waterside- Cape Enrage has changed a lot as well since we started going here. Looking forward to what the new director has in store for this beautiful gem and treasure of NB.
If you are curious, here is what the seeds look like after a week at home. Not sure if this is how they are supposed to look. One tray got fried in the oven when my son turned it on my accident. Oops, will try planting some more. If any of you have any advice, let me know!!
The random winner of the package of seeds goes to my Mom!
Thanks for reading everyone. Hope you are enjoying the lovely spring weather we have had this week!
Until next time!!