Thought I would post to bring this to the front.
I made a rush trip to Nova Scotia over Friday and today. Not my style to not have caches loaded and not be able to stop, but, I was helping two friends get onto their sailboat near Halifax to bring it home and bringing their car back.
Here is my route and the approximate time: Bangor to Calais about 2 1/4 hours. Calais to Saint John (and remember once you cross the border you ADD an hour - that proved to be an almost fatal mistake for the Capt. who planned our trip - as he failed to do that in the planning and we nearly missed the ferry) - time about 1 1/2 hour. I am strong on my time by a bit because not everyone drives over the limit - traffic needs to be allowed - and we did move right along.
We opted to take the Digby Ferry out of St. John. The passage is 3 hours. They like you there 1 hour before departure. I would say with the date for the mega - reservations might be required and I strongly recommend them. Reservations may be made on line. They give discounts for AAA and Seniors - booking round trip as well, I believe. The ferry people were very courteous and helpful. A variety of food, beverage and snacks are available onboard. A travel guide person on board who hands out very nice maps and has helpful hints. Gift shop, arcade, internet, children's play area rest rooms, etc. I will suggest, the seats inside (and you have to leave your car) fill up fast. Bring your blanket and pillow and move right upstairs to stake your claim with your friends as soon as your car is parked.
Once docked and your car is off, you can head in town and towards the town with the event. I had one regret with this rush trip - that I had to keep driving and couldn't take the time to cache (in either direction). I drove right through the town of venue as we used Route 10 as a cross cut rather than driving around to reach the marina. I believe it was about 1 1/2 hours across to the venue town but I may be wrong.
I stayed overnight in Digby before hopping back on the ferry this morning. My stay at the Admiral Digby Inn & Cottages was very enjoyable - the only regret - to short. From checking in very late - to my early morning check out - it was perfect. Jacqueline checked me in - and out and was wonderful - a fun lady with a great personality. They have an indoor pool, cable TV, free wi-fi, in room coffee maker and a coin laundry. Nice clean rooms. Wished I could have tried the restaurant too.
Another disappointment was trying to do one cache early this morning in the rain and not finding it - perhaps it was me. I hope so.
Anyway - I have been told the ferry takes the same amount of time as driving but saves the mileage. If I had the time, I would probably do a loop - ferry over, mega, up the coast and long drive home - to enjoy the scenery. One thing this ensured - I wished I was able to go to the Mega - I am sure all will have fun.
To the hosts and hostess - I will be back - and hopefully able to give you all some notice, cache my heart out and meet some of you! Beautiful country and I can't believe it has been over 20 years since I was last here.
Sheesh! Good information, Lois. Thanks. We should do more of this type of thing, RULost2? and I travel a lot - we'd love to provide information that encourages people to travel as well.
A travel log post would be fine. This was just so relevant to this thread. I really, really wished I had know I was staying over so I was better prepared to cache - but alas, I wasn't. A long trip in less that 2 days. Beautiful area thought and worth visiting.
I would love to hear more about some of your travels. I know you have been a couple places I would love to visit.
Thanks for the encouragement - I wasn't sure but thought it might help someone if they were thinking about going to the mega.
Just to clarify... Due to a surprisingly low interest in this event it never made it to Mega status. They had plenty sign up on their web page, but currently are at 209 on the cache page. So not enough to make it a mega. Maybe it was just to far for people to go.
don't they get the "mega" status after, depending on actual attendance? (from gc.com..."In order to qualify as a Mega Event, the event cache must be attended by 500+ people.")
They did that one time...
That was at the Meet and Greet before GW5 in Raliegh. Here is what Groundspeak says:
Mega-Events are a special designation reserved for only the largest event caches – those which attract geocachers to attend on a regional, national or international level. To qualify as a Mega-Event, the organizers must obtain prior approval from Groundspeak – not from their volunteer cache reviewer. Among other requirements, the organizers must demonstrate a substantial likelihood that at least 500 people will attend the event. A Mega-Event Cache may be published up to one year prior to the event date. A regular Event Cache can be changed to a Mega-Event Cache after the fact, if the organizers demonstrate to Groundspeak that more than 500 people attended.
Thank you for that clarification Mainaic1957. It is to bad they didn't make Mega - and I suspect it would be hard for that to happen now - but who knows - funnier things have happened.
The caching up there would be worth the ride (lots of them in great pockets of locations) but one would want to stay a few days. Beautiful country and everyone I met in a store, restaurant or other establishment was very nice.
This part of Canada sure has changed since my last visit many years ago. Less obvious smoking, recycling in many places, all positive changes in my opinion...........
Definitely want to go back! The lack of my cache find was me - and the CO checked on it right away! Glad it was me..........and not MIA
You confirmed what I suspected
I really had wanted to make it to that event as well. Just wasn't in the cards for it to work out this time. I too really want to get over there to cache, and to see the province.
Travel to Nova Scotia
I travel to Nova Scotia quite frequently and have family that live quite near the event site. I always drive around unless I'm going to Digby/Yarmouth area. Here are the two reasons why; 1) it's cheaper, and 2) after all the wait time and boarding times, it's just as fast to drive.
The folks I traveled with agreed - travel time is the same - they wanted to save miles and I think thought that would ultimately save $ - not sure. But I can tell you the lady at the motel in Digby was a hoot! I would go back just to see her LOL!
Perhaps we can get a group together to make a trek next year - that would be fun!