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Ferries cross the entrance to the Saguenay River, a truly magical place.  Do visit if you can.

Weather appears to vary with turns around capes on the river.

Farms even stitch themselves into the valleys.

Rain intensifies beyond each point until

 

just when you think it’ll snow, sunny slopes appear.

We wind past islands  . . .

and follow those who play in the breezes channeled by geology.

 

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

 

Again . . . on the run, chasing food like the finned one in the foreground, Federal Asahi heads down bound chasing who knows what.

Maria exits the Saguenay River where she discharged a load of bauxite.

 

 

And Insignia, later to be speeding downriver at 21 kts, overtakes us at the last bridges down bound spanning the River.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

 

Road trips sometimes include portions on water.  That’s the way this post begins.  First, let’s boat up the Saguenay.  On the north side, we pass Hotel Tadoussac and to its right, the 1747 chapel, Canada’s oldest wooden church.

Around the point is the Tadoussac ferry rack.  I could do more boat posts from this trip….

Transiting the river takes only about 10 minutes;  the companion ferry below is on the south side of the river.

Steep banks sink deep into the fjord on both sides, here south and

 

here north.  Seals sun themselves not far from where the elusive belugas swim and feed.

Clearly this seal is digesting.

This trip has been a recon for my next trip upriver here, scheduled for a few months from now.   About halfway on my 120-mile road trip, the cliffs draw back, exposing wide flats at low tide.

At high tide, about 15′ of water covers all the flats above and below.

Saguenay’s waterfront park has fountains bathing a plethora of sea mammal facsimiles.

Surprisingly, just north of that park, a gigantic aluminum smelting complex operates,

located there in part because of proximity to hydropower.

Just north of the complex, Lac St Jean fills an impact crater, one of several in Quebec.

Surrounding the lake are lake farms producing canola beans, corn, blueberries, and more.  I passed several blueberry fields before I realized what they were.  I took no photos partly because they look like golf courses several years overgrown.

The turnaround point on the north side of the lake was at Dolbeau-Mistassini, where a blueberry festival highlights summer.  The Mistassini River, flowing over this rapids, is one of many rivers feeding into Lac St Jean and the Saguenay River.

At this point about 120 miles from the Saint Lawrence, I turn from the upper east side of the lake, and turn back south along the west side, and then the heavens open and rain pours over the return to Tadoussac.

All photos and observations by Will Van Dorp, who suggests you study a satellite view of a google map of Saguenay, QC.

 

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