Tomorrow is the first day of the ‘official’ spring season, which means we need to change our studded winter tires to regular all-weather tires. At 7:15 AM we dropped off the car at the nearest Canadian Tire store and took a taxi to the Ocean Science Centre since the changeover wouldn’t be finished until noon.

Marije worked all morning and I explored the hills on the first few kilometres of Sugarloaf Path:

Looking on top of the Ocean Sciences Centre – Sugarloaf Path

April snow – Sugarloaf Path

The Parlor – Sugarloaf Path

I strayed off trail for a while and couldn’t believe the places moose can get to deep in the forest, evidence of their browsing was everywhere and droppings were all over the place. It’s surprising to me because they’re such huge animals and the foliage and shrubs are so obstructive that it would seem rather hard for them to get around here. Apparently they have no problems with it.

After collecting our de-studded car we enjoyed the rest of our day outside in Flatrock, where a friend had tipped us off to see a river trail which turned out to be kind of a hidden gem. This trail follows a sparkling river that cascades down to the ocean over several small waterfalls, it’s fun to navigate the surrounding cliffs and rocks and we both enjoyed it there:

Big River – Stiles Cove Path

Brand new bridge over Big River – Stiles Cove Path

A new bridge had been constructed halfway down the river and we decided to see where it led; after a few 100 m and several newly built structures (board-bridges and boardwalks) we encountered the builders themselves.

Stew and Tony explained what they were doing and showed us around which was very helpful. They work for the East Coast Trail Association and were creating boardwalks and bridges using the trees found along the trail, which clears the path and gives the trail a much more natural look than for example the more ‘luxuriously’ developed trails at Signal Hill.

Trail construction – Stiles Cove Path

Trail construction – Stiles Cove Path

Right now this newly cut trail doesn’t go much further than this, but eventually this will be a part of the East Coast Trail from Flatrock to Stiles Cove and then all the way to Pouch Cove.