Planning Road Trip Travel

It didn’t take long before Jenny and I were missing our son as he had to move out to Saskatchewan for a job in his area of expertise. These days you have to go where the work is. Of course just after he moved he started getting local calls for work. Isn’t that life?

road trip canada
Road Trip From Moncton, New Brunswick To Oxbow, Saskatchewan

He was sad he wasn’t able to take his dog Honey with him but he started his job with a probation period and stayed in a hotel the company owns and dogs aren’t allowed. Now that he has a place of his own we will bring Honey out with us.

smallie on a popperWe will wait until summer to take the road trip to visit him and bring his best buddy out, so we have plenty of time to plan the trip so I can include a bit of bass and pike fishing along the way.

This trip will be our first road trip as a retired couple so we are really looking forward to it and having the opportunity to do some fishing along the way makes it all the better. We will also be able to visit a few other family members along the way.

Plan Your Road Trip Well in Advance

mom and dadBy putting some thought and planning into our 4000 km road trip well in advance we are far more likely to save money, avoid problems, extra costs and disappointment. We started putting money away for expenses and will try to stay within our budget.

The last road trip we took was to pay a surprise visit to Ontario to see my foster parents. Well that didn’t work out so well because at that same time they decided to take a trip out to visit the Rocky Mountains.

Planning For A House Sitter

I have never liked leaving our home empty for any length of time so we will have a house sitter. We prefer having a family member stay in our house when we are gone for more than a few days. My mind relaxes so much more when I know our home is in good hands.

There is no need to worry about paying bills while we’re on the road trip because all our bills are now paid electronically.

Road Trip Vehicle Check Up

Before we leave home we will take our car in to a garage for a complete road trip check up. It’s always better safe than sorry and part of that is making sure our vehicle is ready for the trip.

The Unique Season Of Autumn Is My Favourite

autumn joy sedumIn my opinion, as much as I love to see spring arrive, there is nothing that matches how I feel about autumn. Winter, Spring and Summer seasons just don’t compare to the breath taking beauty that takes place here in New Brunswick once Summer hands the reins over to Autumn.

The colours of autumn with all the reds and oranges is a big part of why I love fall in New Brunswick but it’s more than that.

Maple trees tend to be my favourite when colours change. Unlike so many other trees Maples tend to change to gorgeous colours before dropping to the ground while others seem to turn a dead looking brown while still clinging to trees.

I am not one for really hot weather so by the end of summer and on into late fall I do enjoy the temperatures a lot more.

fall fishing smallmouth bassThen there’s the great fishing here in New Brunswick. I love fishing spring and summer but when fall arrives and the fish know it’s time to go on the feed before winter sets in things can get pretty exciting and a great time of year to catch and release that fish of a lifetime.

It was late October when I hooked into the smallmouth bass on the left, which isn’t all that small. It was a beautiful sunny calm day in Oromocto, New Brunswick and the bite was definitely on.

It’s a great time of year to take a friend fishing and let them experience the awesome feeling that keeps me coming back for more year after year.

frost on the pumpkinsHalloween is also a fun time of fall and this year I grew our first pumpkins. Another couple of days I will carve up one or two to display for the kids and then they are going to become pumpkin pies, one of our son’s favourite pies.

It’s fun having the kids help create scary or maybe not so scary pumpkins. Our son is grown up now and maybe he will soon have kids of his own and we can all get together for pumpkin carving fun.

We have some big pumpkin patches in New Brunswick. Check your local area to see if you have one that’s local and get out and see it. A field full of pumpkins is a pretty cool site.

field of pumpkins

We plan to keep the pumpkin seeds, so we can grow more next year, but also they are great once you roast them. Very tasty.

Autumn is a great time to get out for a long walk in the woods. There are many trails in New Brunswick that are breath taking this time of year, don’t miss out on the joy of autumn.

Timely Tips For Booking Your Holiday Travel

plan your travelWell holiday season here in New Brunswick is in the air once again and I can already feel it calling me but it can be so expensive.

Most of us wish we could take a break, unwind and maybe take a vacation away from the day in and day out activities of work. Truly, we deserve to have a time out.

How can you make this this holiday season different from past holiday season? Why not travel to a new location. Somewhere you have always wanted to go but never took the time to plan because you always thought it would be too expensive.

Many of our friends don’t do much travel because they always leave it until the last minute and then say it’s too expensive. Well I’m here to tell you that if you take the time to plan ahead way ahead you can travel for far less than last minute travel.

Below are a few travel tips that will help you travel for less:

The Early Bird Gets The Worm

early bird gets the wormNo I don’t mean you should eat worms to save enough money but you should plan travel early enough to save money so you don’t have to eat worms. So be the early bird and use some spare time to contact a travel company or agency and see what you would pay if you were the early bird.

Just last week our son checked to see what it would cost to fly home for a visit. The next he booked the flight and it had gone up $20 in just one day. It can happen that fast. So the earlier you book your travel whether it’s by air, train or bus the better pricing you’re likely to get.

More Travellers Every Year

Every year the demands for travel and flights during holiday season is more in demand but there are still only so many seats available. As they fill the cost goes up until they are completely full and sometimes even over-booked.

Plan Your Itinerary

Plan every aspect of your travels well in advance and you’ll actually have money left over to enjoy while you’re travelling. Even plan where you want to visit while you’re taking your well deserved break.

Most important is to make certain you reserve your hotel rooms. You can check availability just before you book your travel flight, bus or train and then be sure to book the room or rooms immediately so they are still available.

Use A Travel Agency

We don’t travel as much as we would like and don’t always know what we are doing so rather than be disappointed we use a travel agency and have never had a problem. I have done the travel plans on my own before and it cost us more money than we needed to spend.

One of the great things about using a travel agency are the bells and whistles they can get for us along with promos and discounts, especially around the holiday seasons. In my view they are well worth checking out.

For many the opportunity to travel may be a once in a lifetime experience so do yourself a favour and be the Early Bird. If you’re planning to travel New Brunswick Canada be sure to check out Tourism New Brunswick.

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Tourism New Brunswick – Sackville Fall Fair

sackville fall fairJust noticed Tourism New Brunswick post to on my Facebook wall. It’s time for the Sackville Fall Fair which goes from September 20 – 23. Below is what

Fall Fair Celebrates 12 Years in 2012!

Celebrate autumn in Sackville during the annual Sackville Fall Fair! Featuring a weekend jam-packed with events for all ages. Read more about the Sackville Fall Fair…

Grand Manan Island Is The Place For Me

Well Grand Manan Island is actually a place that Jenny plan to visit once we have our next car, but I have been looking up videos and stories. Just this morning Tourism New Brunswick linked to a great little video about Grand Manan Island and as a friend on Facebook it shows on my wall.

I thought you might enjoy it as well.

Grand Manan Island : The Life of the Tides from Matador Network on Vimeo.

A Trip To Gagetown, New Brunswick For A Day of Fishing

Last week, right at the end of August, my fishing buddy Casey dropped in while he was in Moncton with his wife. He asked if I’d like to go to Gagetown, New Brunswick for a day of fishing, as if I’d ever say ‘NO’. So he said he’d be here to pick me up at 5:30 but knowing Casey I’d better be ready at 5am and sure enough he was at my house just before 5:00 am.

gagetown ferryI’m glad Casey decided to take the Gagetown ferry as I like taking the ferry places. When we cross bridges I seldom get a good shot with my camera and is why I like taking the ferry. So we also took the ferry on the way back home as well.

We turned off Highway 2, onto highway 715 and followed it to Lower Jemseg and then onto the Jemseg Ferry Road which took us straight to the Gagetown ferry.

ferry crossing with fishing boat
Glad we didn’t leave any earlier because it would have been dark when we crossed.

However, we were early enough to be the only vehicle on the ferry. Just a quick 5 minutes later we were on the other side, heading towards the Gagetown boat launch. But first I took a few pictures. Here’s one just before the sun was above the horizon.

sunrise gagetown new brunswick
The sun is just about to burst into view

herring in waterWe like to go fishing during the week when all the younger people are at work so we don’t have to deal with boat traffic on the main sections of the river. I usually get more pictures of wildlife when there is less boat traffic.

Like this herring I saw waiting for breakfast to swim by. He was right next to the boat launch. He stopped fishing just long enough to check us out. Saw we were no threat and went right back to fishing.

ducks at gagetown new brunswickI snapped the picture above and when I looked to the other side of the boat launch there were a few ducks bobbing for their breakfast as well.

Herrings, ducks, Osprey and eagles seem to be everywhere and for me that makes it hard to get any fishing done. I end up looking around taking pictures instead of fishing. Oh well, as it gives Casey a chance to beat me at fishing. Ha ha…

Sunrise Gagetown, New Brunswick

sunrise at gagetown

Just as we launched the sun broke through a cloud on the horizon, just to let us know it was there.

As you can see by the water the wind is already blowing. Normally we like to have a nice calm day but when it’s hot like the weather channel was predicting I don’t mind a bit of a breeze.

Fortunately the day remained breezy but didn’t get crazy windy like some of the days we had when even the anchor couldn’t hold the boat from blowing around.

As we started fishing I looked back to the shore and there was The Old Boot Pub. The rising sun was giving it a special hue that made it look like a sunset and made me think it would have been nice to stay for the night so we could visit the pub after a long day of fishing. But that wasn’t the plan for this trip.

the ole boot pub gagetown
The Old Boot Pub, Gagetown New Brunswick

I looked across the river at one point and saw what looks like a juvenile eagle. It was so far away I had to zoom my camera as far as I could so the image isn’t the best. That part of the river had a huge sandbar so we couldn’t get any closer.

eagle on downed tree in river 

We had a fun day of fishing. I caught chain pickerel but Casey had to do better and caught not only pickerel but some nice smallmouth bass, fat perch and even a gorgeous looking sunfish.

Because it was a bit windy we looked for places to fish that had some protection from the wind as we love fishing the weeds when there is no wind at all. As we moved up this protected channel we say a houseboat with three people enjoying the great day.

Grandma was floating around on an inner tube while granddad and granddaughter were fishing. I think their granddaughter was early teens and she was beating granddad 9 to zip as he was still trying to figure out how to get them to bite. Grandma was attracting them to the their houseboat using her toes.

That little stretch of calm water was packed full of hungry chain pickerel.

Before we knew it our day of fishing was over and we were heading back to the boat launch. We packed everything up for the trip home and Casey makes the final check around the boat to be sure all is packed well and all the lights are working properly.

casey last check on the boat

I was glad Casey chose to take the ferry again as it was still plenty light enough for me to get a few more pictures on our way back home. This time I got a picture with a little more light than we had early in the morning.

gagetown ferry back home

The Leaning Tower of Osprey

We saw a number of Osprey and their man made platforms they use for their nests. Most were vacant as they were likely out fishing just like Casey and I were.

However on the way home I saw one next where the platform was leaning. It looked like it would be a challenge raising their babies without them rolling out of the nest.

leaning tower of osprey

The shot is from quite a distance but if you look closely there’s an Osprey perched on the left side of the nest.

Security & Safety Issues You Need To For International Travel Tours

india travel tipsPeople leave the familiar comforts of one’s home to travel abroad for various reasons. The most frequent reason why people travel is because of their interest towards other cultures and traditions and, of course, for the thrill and fun of it.

Having fun outside your own country can be an unforgettable experience of a lifetime but it can also be a nightmare.

We live in New Brunswick Canada and I could just imagine falling ill or having an accident while on international travel tours. Even worse could be losing your travel documents, money or luggage. There are many mishaps that can potentially happen while you are supposed to be living your dream.

Are These Travel Misfortunes Preventable?

Understandably, there are some mishaps that are hard to stop like getting sick but most of these can actually be prevented. There are a lot of safety tips that travelers should be aware of in order to avoid them and unknowingly getting in trouble.

Here are those precautions that every traveler on international travel tours must follow:

Take Some Planning Your Trip

Photoxpress_10353213Most negative things involved around traveling can be reduced or even eradicated by learning how to plan your trip. Check on your itinerary, travel documents, credit and insurance. Are you traveling along with other people in a group tour or are you traveling solo?

Traveling solo can be risky, especially if you’re female. But you can’t let fear and worry rule over your travel plans. Instead adopt security measures by knowing and planning where you go, how you travel and where you stay.

Without Money You’re Sunk

carry cashYou can’t do much these days without credit cards but don’t rely 100% on them. You need to carry a bit of cash however you should never carry too much at one time and for heavens sake don’t open your wallet where people can see what you have.

Think before you act. I’m talking about when you withdraw money from an ATM machine. This is where many people part with their money so be sure you are in an area that has plenty of lighting as thieves tend to like the dark situations.

Instead be smart and do your withdrawals in the morning with a group of people as there is safety in numbers. Once you’ve got your money for the day keep it close to your body along with your travel documentation to prevent them from being stolen.

Learn The Safest Places To Stay

Never leave your hotel door unlocked, not even for a minute. You come in your room and the door is locked immediately. Quite often thieves are working where you stay so for this reason it’s not good to leave valuables in your room either.

Most hotels will have a safe so instead of worrying about your expensive things like money and jewellery get them into that safe rather than leaving them in your room.

It’s always good to learn where the exits are so that if anything bad happens you can find your way to an exit or safety.

Don’t Over Share With Strangers

It’s great to get out, have fun, meet knew people but don’t over share with people you’ve just met. Thieves can be quite charming in order to get what they want so keep your head about you at all times.

I’m sure you’ve heard in the news how people are drugged and it usually happens when one isn’t paying attention to their drink at all times. This can be hard to do when you’re traveling alone and it only takes two seconds for someone to drop something in your beverage.

Have a good time, be safe and never invite a stranger back to your hotel room and don’t even think of going anywhere with them.

Keep Your Wits About You

Having a drink is fine but in order to stay alert it’s better to stay sober. If you want to get loaded wait until your back home with your own friends because getting drunk in a strange place is just not too intelligent.

Did I mention you should never accept a drink from a stranger.

Let People Know Where You Will Be

When you are leaving the comfort of your home and country let people know. Let them know when you are leaving, where you are going and staying as well as when you expect to be returning home again.

We have friends who went abroad and were backpacking to save money. They didn’t really plan their activities and were robbed of all their money and watches and jewellery which brought their trip of a lifetime to a quick end. Fortunately they were not hurt or killed in the process.

Don’t Drink The Water

kenna-jersey-city-481124-oNever trust local drinking water in the different places you visit, instead it’s safer and healthier to bring along bottled water anywhere you go.

It’s a smart move to bring water purification tablets just in case bottled water is not available to you for whatever reason. You need these especially when traveling by bus or train and in cross-country road trips.

Most Important Travel Tip

There are many more safety rules for international travel tours that travelers can follow to remain safe and in my opinion it starts with the packing of your luggage. Never let anyone else pack your luggage and never ever leave your luggage alone for even a minute. This travel tip could save you from a huge travel nightmare.

Learning more about where you plan to travel and safety issues is a great place to start so you know what paper work you need and what you should be avoiding while you’re there.

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Reasons to Take Railway Travel Tours Across Canada

via rail canadaJenny and I love to travel but we are now 60 years young and those longer trips in the car tend to take my energy away and I end up with a sore back which takes the fun out of most things. For this reason, when our son moved out to Saskatchewan, we decided it would be better to take a train out and just rent a car when we arrive.

The thing is we both haven’t taken a train in more than 30 years and wondered if it was still as enjoyable as we both remember. We have never taken a train trip together either. Jenny went all they way out to Vancouver where I only came to New Brunswick from Ontario but so enjoyed the breath taking scenery and seem to remember my neck being cramped for days after staring out the window for so long.

Why Take The Train Across Canada

niagra falls canadaCanada’s allure is almost matchless from the great outdoors to its cosmopolitan settings. It evokes visions of Canadian pride such as the majestic snow-capped Rocky Mountains, the amazing horse-shoe shaped Niagara Falls, the CN Tower with its commanding presence over Toronto, and its multi-ethnic culture and peoples.

How can any tourist get the best vantage point to enjoy the visual pleasures that Canada has to offer? Is there any better way to see and explore the vastness and beauty of Canada but by rail? The rail travel tours across Canada are among the most touted mode of transport that can serve Canada on a plate to any hungry adventurer.

Canada is an huge expanse filled with vast areas of wilderness that makes it overwhelming to explore. The Rockies and the western part of the country are especially scenic but massive. Only by taking the railway system that offers the efficiency of breezing through this massiveness can one truly get into the heart of the prides of Canada.

The two major transcontinental freight railway systems make the exploration of the country and these are the Canadian National and Canadian Pacific Railway. This is why that for many, many years and until now, the legendary cross-Canada rail trip remains to be the ‘must-do’ holidays of every traveler who decides to come for a visit.

The great Canadian rail tour is an experience in itself. The passage aboard the rails’ acclaimed vista-domeliner makes it possible to take in the sights in the most pleasurable way. This is a type of railway car, which has a glass top or dome, that allows the passengers to have a 360-degree view of the sights as travelers sit back and relax. The train experience is like a bus trip but more comfortable, luxurious and fast. The meals aboard the train are looked-forward to and the sleeper plus accommodations are beyond simple comfort. These trains blend comfort and great viewing facilities with breathtaking routes that make them superior modes of travel in this part of the world.

These trips are hosted by professional tour managers who ensure that every element of the tour is organized. There are hotel stays in the duration of the trip that is accompanied with comprehensive and guided tours in the major scenic spots such as the Rocky Mountain, Niagara Falls, Maligne Lake and Maligne Canyon. The hotel accommodations are nothing short of luxury, comfort and with great views of the outdoors.

Whatever you decide, a pre-established itinerary or a tailor-made holiday, traveling by rail means you can get to experience – see, touch, taste – some of the most stirring sensations in many unique destinations. Kicking off in Vancouver Island, you can already get a taste of the provincial capital of British Columbia, Victoria, before your rail adventure embarks for more.

By the accounts of experienced travelers, rail travel tours are quintessentially Canadian that links the country and its people to its roots. Among the best train trip that travelers must take given the choice is the cross-country tour from Toronto to Vancouver. This lasts for about four days and can be taken during winter at discounted rates that also offers a different kind of appeal with the whiteness of snow and glaciers.

The excitement of the cross-Canada is anchored on the tour through the Rockies. If the time does not allow a long trip, one can opt to take shorter day trips through the mountains such as the Vancouver–Calgary route. Another worthwhile train trip can take you to the far north which is the Winnipeg-Churchill, Manitoba route on the shore of Hudson. It is a 2-night trip that costs as low as $157. The Polar Bear Express is a one-day excursion that is a quick experience of the north that can be best taken during summer with the young ones.

This commutes between Cochrane, Ontario and Moosonee on James Bay. Taking a rail trip from Halifax can run for 21 hours that is enough for anyone to experience sleeping aboard the train to savour the luxury of the rails.

Canada has gone a long, long way since the first railway system and the early cross-Canada rail travel tours. Indeed, some things are better left off as they are. In this case, the railways that allows a faster and more efficient touring of the vast and scenic Canada.

Got My New New Brunswick 2012 Touring Guide

new brunswick travel guideI love going to the mailbox and getting some things that aren’t just bills and today I got the New Brunswick 2012 touring guide I requested. It’s raining and I’m not going to be doing any yard work today so it’s a great day to start looking through the guide to see where Jenny and I will be visiting on our vacation this year.

If you’ve read our travel blog you know we don’t get to travel as much as we’d like to but we both retire soon and it’s travel for us, as much as we can afford, so we plan to plan our trips to save as much money as we can which makes a free guide priceless.

Vacationing And Site Seeing On A Budget

Money wasn’t always so much of an issue as it is for us today. So in our retirement we have to follow a pretty strict budget if we want to have smooth sailing. That means planning every aspect of our travels.

A few years ago we thought camping would save us money and reserved a camp site well in advance. When we got there the camp owner wasn’t available and we were exhausted from driving so we ended up renting a room at a motel right next door. This motel had a kitchen area right in the room and other luxuries we wouldn’t have camping.

The thing is the room was less than the camp site so we just cancelled our campsite and asked for our money back as no one was there to help us when we arrived. They were nice and we did get our money back but it made us think more about planning and not assuming what is cheaper.

Use The Travel Guide As A Guide

We are using our new travel guide to see what locations and sites we want to see during our vacation but then we will research to find the best bang for our buck so we don’t go over our budget.

Be sure to order your free New Brunswick travel guide today so you have it for planning your vacations or day trips.

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New Brunswick Sites Jenny, Steve And Have Visited

Me, Steve and Jenny in OntarioWhen Jenny and I first met we used to travel all over the place. Then we got married and started a family. From that point on our focus was raising our son and the places we traveled to where kid friendly.

We enjoyed many trips to Fundy Park. We love the trails and walking along the water’s edge to see what creatures the tides left behind on this particular day. Time would fly by and soon it was either time to head back to Moncton or to the camp site.

Hopewell Cape Rocks or as we locals call them, The Rocks, has always been a great adventure with our without our son. It’s just a place that let’s your mind wonder and fills one with awe.

We have been to Kings Landing a few times and I would say it’s one of our son’s favourite memories. He was a very curious boy and we fed that so he is still a very curious young man now.

Jenny is from Campbellton so we have climbed Sugar Loaf Mountain, which was pretty much in here backyard. Things have changed considerably since we were last there so Sugar Loaf is back on our travel schedule.

Now that Steve has moved from Moncton to Oxbow, Saskatchewan we have plans to start seeing the sites in New Brunswick we haven’t had a chance to see yet. Just six more months and Jenny retires. Then there is nothing to stop us from traveling until our hearts are content.

I just ordered the latest New Brunswick guide a few minutes ago. This way we will have a way to plan our travels.

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