July 17, 2019
Wednesday I left Granville Ferry and headed southeast past Kejimkujik National Park (stopping there for a while to study my scenic road book for the day’s activities). Continuing southeast on Route 8 I reached the town of Liverpool, along the Atlantic coast, about an hour later. I then drove southwest on 2-lane, controlled access NS-103 and exited near the town of Port Joli. A short drive out to the water and I arrived at Keji’s coastal location.
To complement the main Park which is way inland, a location next to the ocean to help reflect Nova Scotia’s 4,600 miles of coastline was established. An adjunct was recently added adjacent to the original seaside Park to help protect two estuaries.
There are two walking trails from the parking area out to the ocean (and this is a good opportunity to mention that since leaving Maine earlier this trip, photos of large, non-lake bodies of water were the Bay of Fundy, or it’s sudsidiaries. From this point forward, at least until I reach Quebec province, they will now be the Atlantic Ocean). I opted for the shorter walk (still a hike) out to Harbour Rocks. A lengthier route which went out and around Port Joli Head was longer than I wanted to walk, and was rated as “Difficult”.
This was a view as I drove in towards the parking lot.
When I got to the unattended entry kiosk there were several warning signs, among them:
I was there on July 17. About halfway out to the water a family overtook me on the walking path (I had stopped to photograph some flowers). A boy about 12 years old asked me what his chances were of encountering a bear. I told him it was possible but probably unlikely. I also relayed the tips I read at the entrance: Make yourself big (waving your arms and making noise), always look the bear in the eyes (backing away if you need to), and NEVER turn and run. I didn’t tell him that if he did run he shouldn’t run any faster than me!
Someone later told me (and I subsequently read online) that this oceanside location was recently closed for a period of time due to increased bear activity.
I finally made it to within sight of the water – trust me, it’s out there:
There was just a hint of coastal fog that literally burned off within a few minutes of my taking that photo. It had been generally overcast but now the sun was shining brightly.
There was a small beach area open to the public:
You can just make out the kid that asked me about the bear to the left of the bigger pine tree, up on a large rock.
Further north there appeared to be a much larger beach area but signs indicated it was off limits to visitors. Protected Piping Plovers (say that 3 times fast…) are nesting, and I think sea turtles are too.
Because of on-site research, visitors are not allowed off the trails unescorted so there wasn’t anything else here to see or do and I headed back to my car.