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Help! Nova Scotia planning... Who Moved my Cheese?

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    Help! Nova Scotia planning... Who Moved my Cheese?

    Guys/Gals, please chime in and help...

    So earlier in the year I had begun planning a motorcycle trip to Nova Scotia that would be with my son post High School graduation. I've found that planning a bike trip is best done based on advice from other bikers much like yourself, and I was happy when I found a few threads on i-bmw detailing Nova Scotia trips, one by David and Randy ( htheater ) seemed pretty epic.

    Shortly after I'd begun my planning, my son shared "hey, I plan to enlist in the Army and ship out early July". This actually ended my Nova Scotia planning as he would only have about 3-4 weeks post graduation based off of that schedule and we already had two events planned within that short window, and I also wanted to throw him a graduation party before life got ahold of him.

    Well, here we are, early August, a solid month after I had expected that he would be gone with the wind. He's still with us which doesn't hurt my feelings, trying to sort through things and ensure that once he enlists he is not served empty promises like so many that we have talked to. He's told me that it likely wouldn't be until sometime in December now, I'm assuming due to training cycles, but it has once again opened the door for me to potentially do the trip with him.

    Oh the changes that just a few months make... so now that I want to go into full speed planning mode again, i-bmw - a good resource for me just 5 months ago, is no longer. I'm hoping that several here may have made the same journey and could share thoughts/experiences, as well as answer a few of my questions. I'm thinking that this trip would encompass 9 days (2 weekends and a 5 day work week) leaving out of Pennsylvania.

    1) What are the must see/do places in Nova Scotia?
    2) Will it be too cold to camp in late September? .... I looked at the averages and it looks like a gamble for that time of year, NOW would be perfect camping weather.
    3) As he is a new/young rider, I don't really want to make hard and fast plans, only to find out that I am causing him to ride fatigued and/or hurrying us through the journey. If it's too cold to camp, and we want to travel without reservations, will we potentially face issues with finding lodging at nights?
    4) On account of him, I don't know that I will be able to deviate too far off the direct(est) path, but any roads/rides/sights between Carlisle, PA and Nova Scotia that are "can't miss" themselves? (Not to include the urban centers, I'm not taking him anywhere near them)
    5) I'm sure that I'll think of 5 and 6 right after I post this....
    Matt
    Street: 2011 Ducati Multistrada S :: 2000 Honda VFR @ 39k :: 2002 BMW K1200RS @ 13k ... round 3
    Track: 2008 Suzuki GSX-R 750 :: 2008 Honda CBR1000RR
    Dirt: Honda CRF450X
    IBA #25520 - Iron Butting the Blue Ridge Parkway

    If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to ride that thing could do.

    #2
    I'd think the Kancamangus would be a must ride road. I'd also consider grabbing a ferry from Maine to NS, at least one way. I think that'd be a cool thing to do. Maybe do an overnight near Lake George in NY or hit Woodstock? I know there are a few members here who can give you much better advice about the area than I could.

    Comment


      #3
      Matt:

      I did a 12 day trip with Stephanie about 12 years ago. Like most of my trips no itinerary at all. Now traveling with a 15 year old girl I decided to make sure she would endure the trip. We stayed a B&B's work out great she was pampered and we were well fed.

      Back when I did the trip the travel centers up in NS were fantastic - pull in tell them what you wanted and they had several suggestions.

      Of course do the Cabot Trail both directions. The Bay of Fundy was really cool. Alexander Graham Bell Museum was pretty cool as well.

      Of course I wrote up a ride report and posted it on I-BMW but can't remember all the places we went.

      Peggy's Cove Lighthouse was pretty cool - very touristy but cool.

      I will try to find some of the places we went.

      We went in August weather there is always iffy - we were fortunate only one day of light rain but the temps dropped from low 80's down to low 50's that day.

      And of course for the life of me I never got used to kph - I thought the speed limits were awesome until a nice police officer pulled me over asking me what my rush was - great guy he absolutely could have wrote me a huge ticket - he just said to get on the program and quickly.

      Comment


        #4
        It's been a while since I have done this ride (think I had the zebra RS at that time) we camped in Baddeck NS made it easy to do Cabot trailer in both directions also worth visiting is Louisbourg but be sure to pack warm gear even if it is nice when you leave Baddeck. As Bruce said fundy trail pkwy is nice to see and stop at hopewell rocks park at low tide. If you feel adventurous, go all the way to meat cove (was dirt road not sure it still is) there is a small campground but nights are pretty cold on that tip of land.

        Comment


          #5
          There are some neat off road ventures to be had too....Cape Breton in both directions is a must. Other than that you ride the lighthouse route or the northern bay of fundy....I rode back from NS once and will never do that again....New Brunswick has nothing to offer on a cage. The ferry both ways is the key.

          Comment


            #6
            BruceV when you say Cabot Trail in BOTH directions, it appears to be a circular route. Are you suggesting that it's so scenic and different that one should ride it both ways or am I missing the bigger picture here?
            Matt
            Street: 2011 Ducati Multistrada S :: 2000 Honda VFR @ 39k :: 2002 BMW K1200RS @ 13k ... round 3
            Track: 2008 Suzuki GSX-R 750 :: 2008 Honda CBR1000RR
            Dirt: Honda CRF450X
            IBA #25520 - Iron Butting the Blue Ridge Parkway

            If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to ride that thing could do.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Flyboy View Post
              I rode back from NS once and will never do that again....New Brunswick has nothing to offer on a cage. The ferry both ways is the key.
              Paul, is there really that much time to be saved by taking the ferry? Just eyeballing it, if we were gonna circle Nova Scotia anyway, it looks like it would only save about 150 miles. If I'm honest, I would have expected it to be a minimal time savings until we wait for the ferry, load, strap down, travel, unload, etc but you say that the ferry is the only way to go.

              Again, am I missing the big picture? I appreciate the advise as this is the kinda things that I need/prefer to know before experiencing the pain.
              Matt
              Street: 2011 Ducati Multistrada S :: 2000 Honda VFR @ 39k :: 2002 BMW K1200RS @ 13k ... round 3
              Track: 2008 Suzuki GSX-R 750 :: 2008 Honda CBR1000RR
              Dirt: Honda CRF450X
              IBA #25520 - Iron Butting the Blue Ridge Parkway

              If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to ride that thing could do.

              Comment


                #8
                Happy to report that I found at least a portion of the Ride Report of Dave and Randy that I eluded to...

                http://web.archive.org/web/201207141...ead.php?t=3300
                Matt
                Street: 2011 Ducati Multistrada S :: 2000 Honda VFR @ 39k :: 2002 BMW K1200RS @ 13k ... round 3
                Track: 2008 Suzuki GSX-R 750 :: 2008 Honda CBR1000RR
                Dirt: Honda CRF450X
                IBA #25520 - Iron Butting the Blue Ridge Parkway

                If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to ride that thing could do.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by MattB View Post
                  BruceV when you say Cabot Trail in BOTH directions, it appears to be a circular route. Are you suggesting that it's so scenic and different that one should ride it both ways or am I missing the bigger picture here?
                  Say you are starting in Baddeck heading to St. Anns so NE next day head out to Margaree going NW complete different view because you are going in the opposite direction from the day before first day you are heading N to St. Anns next day you are heading S to St. Anns.

                  I found both rides very good - either way or both ways the route is spectacular.

                  Plus many places to stop and explore on both rides.

                  Just depends on how much time you want to spend there.

                  When we went I had no set time and we really did poke around everywhere.
                  Last edited by BruceV; 08-12-2019, 07:16 PM.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    If you like miles upon miles of nothing but WWII radio towers, then ride through NB. Me, never ever again. The ferry is a nice way to unwind going over or back...you don’t tie down your bike, the deckhands do and only use one strap if I recall.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Matt , plenty of room here for a truck and trailer if you want to blast up from Mass . I’ve done it a few times . Grab the ferry in Portland

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Nova Scotia: the most beautyfull cdn province! Went there a zillion times, work and play. (Well, mostly work)
                        -Cape Breton tour of course, and stop for a day at Fortress of Louisbourg, it’s worth it.
                        -The S-W and N-W coasts are very nice and ‘’unnattended’’, you will think the roads and sea are all yours
                        -There used to be a motorcyclists gathering in Halifax Harbor Park every Tuesday night, not sure but the cops might have put an end to this tradition.
                        -Beware of deers! My wife actualy touched one with her hand when riding the K, (in Sherbrooke, NS)


                        Stay safe and keep us posted.

                        Comment


                        • 802Mike
                          802Mike commented
                          Editing a comment
                          ^ Owners look a lot like their dogs in Canada.

                        #13
                        Hey Mike,

                        Sorry I'm just coming across this now and hope it's not too late to pass along my ride report from a few years ago when we did a lap around Nova Scotia:

                        https://www.k1600forum.com/forum/bmw...de-report.html

                        When we went, the Portland to Yarmouth ferry was an excellent way to get there. We took the ferry to NS and then rode through Maine, etc on the way back. The Cabot Trail is great but the real memories there were from leaving ourselves open to meeting locals and visiting little villages here and there.

                        Wes

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