Cape-Breton: Highlands National Park

What felt like much too soon, we left Petit-de-Grat. We drove to Sydney to visit Matt’s cousin and family for a wonderful visit. The kids were meeting cousins they didn't even know they had. Not only were these cousins fun, they also had a pool. After coaxing the kids out of their pool, and then somehow, them getting tossed in again, we finally put an end to the fun and got on the road.

From Sydney, we drove to the Dancing Moose for a night of glamping.

 I donut want to get out!!! (Get it?)

I donut want to get out!!! (Get it?)

 Water fight with Cousin Gord.

Water fight with Cousin Gord.

 Our beautiful and of course, handsome, cousins in Sydney.

Our beautiful and of course, handsome, cousins in Sydney.

The kids were pumped to get back to our van/camping life on the road but they had glamping on their bucket list since seeing the oTentiks at Riding Mountain National Park in Manitoba. So the first night of our drive back, we glamped. Although we arrived late, I found it was much easier to get ourselves set up in a glamping cabin than in the tent, and it was amazing how quickly we could get it all done with two sets of adult hands!

 Ben crashing in the glamping cabin at Dancing Moose on the Cabot Trail.

Ben crashing in the glamping cabin at Dancing Moose on the Cabot Trail.

 Our glamping cabin at Dancing Moose - Matt makes the cabin look tiny.

Our glamping cabin at Dancing Moose - Matt makes the cabin look tiny.

 Sophie and Ellie trying to reproduce the Dancing Moose logo.

Sophie and Ellie trying to reproduce the Dancing Moose logo.

 Gorgeous coastal view behind the Dancing Moose cabins. The crashing waves were impressive.

Gorgeous coastal view behind the Dancing Moose cabins. The crashing waves were impressive.

The next day, we had one of the most delicious breakfasts on our trip at the Dancing Moose Café. With our tummies full, we were excited because we had a beautiful day to drive the Cabot Trail. We made some stops along the way, stopping at multiple lookouts.

 Lookout on the Cabot Trail.

Lookout on the Cabot Trail.

 Another easily accessible lookout on the Cabot Trail.

Another easily accessible lookout on the Cabot Trail.

We moseyed along until we reached the iconic Skyline Trail. We had lunch in the parking lot and geared up for the hike. The hike was an 8.7 km rolling walk with gorgeous ocean vistas and a fantastic view of the meandering road through the Highlands. After a beautiful day with loads of eye candy, we found our campground in the park and put our tent up for the night.

 Heading out to walk the iconic Skyline Trail.

Heading out to walk the iconic Skyline Trail.

 It was breezy on the trail and the grass showed it. This is Ellie's interpretation.

It was breezy on the trail and the grass showed it. This is Ellie's interpretation.

 Ben saw the tall grass and he said, "Mom look!! Weeds standing shoulder high! Take a picture! And send it to Gord Downie."

Ben saw the tall grass and he said, "Mom look!! Weeds standing shoulder high! Take a picture! And send it to Gord Downie."

 Funky trees on the Skyline Trail.

Funky trees on the Skyline Trail.

 A stranger volunteered to take a family photo of us. A lovely day for a family hike!

A stranger volunteered to take a family photo of us. A lovely day for a family hike!

 River crossing on the Chéticamp River. We camped for one night at the Chéticamp campground.

River crossing on the Chéticamp River. We camped for one night at the Chéticamp campground.

There was more to be done in the park, but regrettably, we still had a country to cover. I knew now, that next time we came to Cape-Breton, we had some more world to explore and uncover up here in the Highlands. For now, we would say farewell.

Matt is a man with a plan and so now that he’d arrived, our first week was scheduled. The quest to find a place for the night wasn’t going to be a problem this week. Next he had booked a site in the Kouchibouguac National Park on the Acadian Coastal Drive.  Although part of the adventure on our drive to the east was whether or not we’d find a place to park it for the night, I was happy that he’d gone ahead and booked something because the National Parks weren’t always easy to get into. This way, we knew we had something secured so even if we had a longer drive, there was something waiting for us at the end of the road.

From the Cheticamp campground in the Cape-Breton Highlands National Park, we were heading to Kouchibouguac National Park. 

We got up early and loaded up.

On the road again!

 Black Betty takes a break at the border on the Sunrise Trail. Goodbye Nova Scotia, it's time to make our way back to the west.

Black Betty takes a break at the border on the Sunrise Trail. Goodbye Nova Scotia, it's time to make our way back to the west.