Day 37 – July 13 – Montmagny, QC to Grand Falls, NB

It had been about an hour and a half after leaving Montmagny this morning when I saw a small waterfall from my window as we crossed a short bridge and entered the town of St. Pascal. This elicitied, “Halt. Turn around. Go back,” instructions. John pulled into a small parking lot and out we climbed to see the falls.

There was a sign at the edge of the parking area, which was only in French. I was able to figure out that it was about a flour mill, but I took a photo and had Google translate it for me this evening.

It says, “The second site of the Seigneurial mill. The first mill (1799) located west of the river was destroyed by fire. In 1854 Lord Ivanhoe Tache had Edouard Ennis build a second flour mill on the east side of the river. The mill, called “Lajoie” served the Lord during reconstruction. The new mill, a three-storey wooden structure, remained in operation from late August to late March, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week until 1920. It was primarily used for the production of wheat flour, buckwheat and barley.”

After we took our photos and were heading back to the truck John noticed we were parked in the lot of an ice cream shop. Ice cream for lunch. Perfect. John ordered a three-fruit blend, similar to a DQ Blizzard. It was made with fresh strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. I had a banana split, also made with fresh local strawberries. The chocolate layer was not a syrup but a thick, rich (not sweet) fudge and the pineapple was also yummy. The ice cream was very smooth and creamy. When we had finished eating at a picnic table outside I went back and stuck my head in the door and told the two young men that that was by far the best banana split I had ever had. So good!

Another sign directed us four kilometers off the road to see a covered bridge.

As soon as we crossed the border from Quebec into New Brunswick we entered the Atlantic Time Zone, which now makes us four hours ahead of home in BC.

As we entered the village of Little Falls we spied an old block house on a hill near the road. And another turn around to go see it. It was closed but the information signs were in good condition and the gate at the bottom of the stairs was broken so I was able to climb up. Back in the day they would have a had an excellent view in all directions. Today it was rooftops and trees and a pulp mill and trees so I didn’t take any photos.

With the second story rotated atop the first story there would have been no part of the countryside that could not be watched.

Also at the blockhouse was a story about the remarkable trek of the New Brunswick 104th Regiment, in the winter of 1813, that walked a distance of 1100 kilometers from Fredericton, NB to Kingston, ON to reinforce the British troops as an American invasion was expected to happen there.

If you can make it out, the red line is the route they travelled. The yellow dots are known overnight stopping points and the blue dots may have been overnight stops – as determined by an average travel distance on foot in winter conditions.

We are spending the night in Grand Falls. We stayed here in December 2019 when we flew to Ottawa to help our daughter-in-law, who was six-months pregnant at the time, set up her art work at a gallery for a show. After the show opening she flew back to Texas and we rented a car and drove to New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island to find a geocache in each of the province because they were the only two we had not yet made a find. We spent the night at Grand Falls and went to see the Grand Falls but everything was encased in ice and snow. Today it was not, but it is only during the spring melt run-off that there is much water flowing over the rocks.

There are two ziplines across the gorge. You ride over on one and ride back on the other.

The walkway along the front of the Visitor’s Center takes you far enough that you can even see the downriver part of the gorge.

We drove across the bridge and went down to the viewing platform we could see by the zipline shack in the photo above. This allowed us to see more of the falls and a better angle on the gorge under the bridge.

This is the Little River Falls. Even though it appears to be part of the same system, it is actually a waterfall where another river – the Little River – joins the St. John River wherefrom comes the Grand Falls when the water flows over the dam in the spring.

Tomorrow we continue south and east to Fredericton, the capital of New Brunswick, where we plan to spend two nights.

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