September 27 (Part 2) – Digby to Wolfville – Down Digby Neck to Long and Brier Islands

For years, we had heard about the beauty of the drive down Digby Neck and across to Brier Island. We did not know much about this part of our country, we only knew we should not miss it.

The day was still a bit grey and drizzly as we got up and headed down for our delicious B & B breakfast. But, the promise of better weather lay ahead and we set off to explore. Digby Neck is a 60 km long slender peninsula, broken by water in two places. This means we had 2 ferry crossings to make to achieve our goal of reaching the Brier Island lighthouse. We had been warned by two sets of neighbours, who were born in Nova Scotia to pay attention to the ferry times. Ferries run every hour on the half hour from East Ferry to Tiverton on Long Island (Petit Passage) and every hour on the hour from Freeport, Long Island to Westport, Brier Island (Grand Passage). Fares are $7 CAD return for car and passengers for each of the 2 crossings. If you miss a ferry, you have to wait up to an hour for the next one.

The roads on the Neck are twisty and hilly and pass through many small villages. As such, our progress to the first ferry seemed tortuously slow, especially as we got closer. In fact, with 5 km left to travel at 3 minutes to sailing time, I was convinced we would  be too late. Imagine my surprise, as we rounded the last bend and saw that the ferry was still there with landing ramp in place. We wheeled on and were quickly under way for the short crossing to Long Island. The deck attendant let me know that they always wait a few minutes after scheduled sailing time for stragglers. That would be us.

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On reaching the Long Island, we set off on the next race. Ferry sailings are timed so you can catch the 2nd ferry if you drive immediately to the next crossing point. This time, we made it with time to spare and actually had to wait a short time.

Despite warnings from Colleen and René, we took the wrong turn in Westport and ended up at the uglier of the 2 Brier island lighthouses. This one is where the Search and Rescue team is based. The lighthouse is not much to look at, but the coast was pretty.

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After brief look around, we headed back through Westport,

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to Sweetcake Cove where we viewed another lighthouse on Peter’s Island and met some fine folks who told us how to get to the real Brier Island Lighthouse.

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Back through Westport to Wellington Street. After a couple of blocks, you turn off onto…wait for it….Lighthouse Road. Kinda self explanatory. We bounced and jounced down this rough road for a few kilometers and the Brier Island light came into view.

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After wandering around a bit, we again recalled our friends’ warning about minding the ferry times and were able to get back to Westport in time to catch the next ferry for Long Island, so we could take the Balancing Rock Trail. Watch for my next post.

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