We said a warm farewell to Chantal, and she encouraged us to return. Then we loaded up and headed back toward Mont-Joli. There was a wicked crosswind for the first couple of hours, hard to pull a trailer in that kind of wind. We had a comfort stop at Murdochville, where we saw this monument to the copper miners who settled this area.
The interior roads were as hilly as the coastal road we've been riding all week. This is part of the Appalachian Mountain Chain that extends all the way south to Georgia. We reached the coast at Mont-Louis, turned west, and now the wind was straight on the nose--not as treacherous as the crosswind, but still not easy for the drivers. I took photos out the window as Bill drove--the scenery was incredible with the mountains on our left and the open sea on our right.
There were signs warning of water crashing over the road, right next to signs warning of avalanches! I would not want to be here in the winter.
There were several areas of construction where they were building seawalls to protect the road from the ocean. I guess they had so many washouts they decided to try something different. They can't possibly build the road further inland with the mountains rising from the sea.
We stopped along the roadside when Fred pulled us over. One of the fenders on the trailer was flapping in the wind! Bill fixed it while the other men looked on and warned off oncoming traffic and I walked forward to take a photo of this charming lighthouse. It was hard to walk forward due to the strong headwind. We are all glad we are not on the bikes riding into this wind!
We stopped for lunch at Matane. We parked the trucks and trailer to block the wind enough to set out food and eat, but it was quite chilly and the wind still found us. The stop was at a roadside park next to a marina. Sailboats looked like they were ready to go back out on the Gulf of St. Lawrence a few more times, not winterized yet. The replica Viking ship was built in 1984 to commemorate 450 years since the Vikings settled here. I am not quite sure how the Vikings and the French worked it out... My French ancestors arrived here in the 1660s, so maybe the Vikings had moved on by then?
Finally we reached Mont-Joli. We fuelled up the trucks and drove to the motel where Stan and Barbara had left their rental car. We all hugged and said goodbye; they are driving back to Vermont, returning the rental car, and then flying home to Florida Sunday.
Soon after we left Mont-Joli we were on the freeway. It was just as beautiful driving along the coast, but I did not take any more photos--we were moving too fast. We arrived here at Riviere-du-Loup (Wolf River) around 5 PM, visited and had a drink in our rooms, then walked to dinner. We are still too far from home to drive it in one day.