East to Forillon

On this cool, rainy day, we headed east on Quebec Route 132, hugging the south coast of the St. Lawrence Estuary.  Curving southeast along the Gulf of St. Lawrence, we stopped at times to peruse the choppy waters where flocks of gannets dove for fish and mixed flocks of black guillemots and common eiders fed near the shore.  Ring-billed, herring and black-backed gulls gathered on the beaches while cormorants favored rock outcrops that jut above the sea; despite numerous attempts, we failed to spot any whales.

By early afternoon, we entered Forillon National Park, established in 1970.  The Park occupies the tip of the Gaspe Peninsula, lying between the Gulf of St. Lawrence and Gaspe Bay.  The easternmost section of the Appalachians forms the backbone of the Park while sheer rock cliffs between Cape Bon-Ami and Cape Gaspe yield spectacular vistas and provide ideal nesting sites for sea birds.

Tired legs and the inclement weather put hiking on hold for the day but we enjoyed a visit to Forillon's Interpretive Center and surveyed the seascapes along the northeast coast of the Park.  Among other highlights was the sighting of three porcupines (at different locations in Forillon), apparently stirred from their forest haunts by the cool, wet weather.  Skies should clear by tomorrow and we plan a loop hike through the center of the Park; perhaps we'll encounter a moose or two.