Trans-Lab 2017 | GTAMotorcycle.com

Trans-Lab 2017

oomis

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Starting the planning process for a 3 week trip in late July 2017. Going to do the trans-lab, across the water to Newfoundland, L'anse aux Meadows, a couple of days of hiking and camping in Gros Morne National Park, down the west coast to the ferry to Sydney, then the Cabot Trail, then circumnavigating PEI in two days, then the Gaspe Peninsula and home. For the first time in a very long time, this won't be a trip of huge daily mileage for me, which I'm getting tired of. More time off the bike, rather than putting in 1000 kms every day, which gets exhausting.

Looking to camp as much as the weather will allow us to, so does anyone have any experience out this way? I'm currently sifting through all the ride reports on advrider.com... I know the trans lab is now paved, and so the only dirt left is the 510, which is next on the list to be paved. So it should be a pretty easy trip.

As soon as I get a more detailed itinerary and a google map link, I'll post.
 

BlueVFR

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Tempting for a similar trip next summer (July first week), but going Gaspe first, Cabot trail, Halifax, and come back through the State (taking the CAT from Yarmouth to Portland)

http://www.ferries.ca/thecat/
 
Last edited:

shanekingsley

Curry - so nice it burns you twice
Site Supporter
Never could figure out whether these are a pair of old meteor craters or not.

https://goo.gl/maps/2pLggP7dfCv

That looks like the Manic Cinq reservoir and yes, apparently it's from the leftovers of a massive crater. I think it's just one asteroid that hit and the arching waterways to the north are not caused by a separate asteroid. The road going up there is supposed to be nice and twisty, but bumpy and lacking gas for around 200km or so. The tour of Manic Cinq is supposed to be well worth the visit.

edit: here's some reading that might be outdated: http://tlhwy.com/central/hwy389guide.html
 
Last edited:

Motorcycle Mike

Well-known member
The huge crater is https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manicouagan_crater

There is free camping right on the shore of it:
2014-08-05%2B09.42.40.jpg


I doubt all of the trans-lab is paved yet... they are working on it, but have a lot of ground to cover (1000+km)...

Most of the gravel was very smooth and very fast... like a gravel highway. The bit along the East Labrador coast was a mix of very very washboard rough and very deep loose stone (fist size stone). If the purpose of laying the stone was a base to pave over, then the roughest bit would be gone. Most of the trans-lab is pretty boring, aside from the remoteness. The bit from the St. Lawrence up to the crater is good, and the East coast is good. The rest is fairly blah... just tiaga (stunted trees, low hills, lots of water).

I nearly had a couple tank slappers in that loose stone on a fully loaded bike. I should do it again, I have a stabilizer now.
 

Motorcycle Mike

Well-known member
This is what the road is like between the crater and the east coast, for the most part:

2014-08-06%2B12.20.59.jpg
 

oomis

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Really - Translab is paved ....hmmmm..what about services etc ....fuel

Apparently the longest stretch with no fuel is ~410 kms. The 510, which runs from Happy Valley Goose Bay to the ferry at Blanc Sablon, QC, is not paved yet, but it's next on the list.

I'll be carrying fuel with me, like I did on the Dempster. 10L MSR Dromedary bag will do the trick nicely, and pack away small when I don't need it.
 

oomis

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Here's a rough itinerary - emphasis is on planning up to the ferry ride back to the mainland, because those have to be booked in advance. Everything else is flexible.

Day 1: Toronto to Quebec City KOA (781 kms)
Day 2: to Baie Comeau (camp at Manic 2) (436 kms)
Day 3: to Lab City (582 kms)
Day 4: to Happy Valley Goose Bay (530 kms)
Day 5: to Port Hope Simpson (405 kms)
Day 6: to L'Anse aux Meadows (ferry to NL) (355 kms)
Day 7: to Gros Morne National Park (314 kms)
Day 8-10: camping/hiking - no riding
Day 11: to Corner Brook (172 kms)
Day 12: to Cabot Shores, NS (Cabot Trail) (ferry to mainland 5-7 hrs, departs in am) (309 kms)
Day 13: camping/hiking, no riding
Day 14: to Meat Cove (camping at top of Cabot Trail) (88 kms)
Day 15: to Inverness Beach Village Campground (other side of Cabot Trail) (130 kms)
Day 16: to somewhere on the east side of PEI
Day 17: to somewhere on the west side of PEI
Day 18: Gaspe Peninsula day 1
Day 19: Gaspe Peninsula day 2
Day 20: Gaspe Peninsula day 3
Day 21: to Quebec City KOA
Day 22: to home.
 

Salos Dafee

Well-known member
The greatest treasure in Newfoundland and Labrador is its people, and many of them can be found in St. John's.
I do not think you are planning to spend enough time in St. John's. I sure didn't when I visited the Rock, so I have to go back.

You can accomplish a lot of planning and preparation by visiting www.ridetherock.com

Good luck!
 

nakkers

Well-known member
Site Supporter
The greatest treasure in Newfoundland and Labrador is its people, and many of them can be found in St. John's.
I do not think you are planning to spend enough time in St. John's. I sure didn't when I visited the Rock, so I have to go back.

You can accomplish a lot of planning and preparation by visiting www.ridetherock.com

Good luck!

I think the OP is skipping that area all together.

The southeastern area is beautiful. Coastal roads from St John's through to Terra Nova National Park and then on to Gander.

Some amazing Salmon finishing along the Gander river too. Hire a guide and they will show you the fishing holes and even filet and cook it up for you.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

oomis

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Yeah, I'd love to be able to get to the St. John's area, but even with 3 weeks I have to make some hard choices. Gros Morne is a non-negotiable, as is Cabot, Gaspe and PEI. Initially I hadn't thought to do PEI, but when it occurred to me that if I didn't, PEI would remain the only province / territory I hadn't ridden in, I couldn't have that.

PEI wouldn't have been enough to entice me to come back that way any time soon, but leaving half of NL out definitely would.
 

lowrider

Active member
Site Supporter
Yes, if you elect to go to St. John's, you will have to take the "long" ferry back (be sure to book a room) or waste a day backtracking to Port aux Basques. But St. John's is a jewel IMO - George St. = highest pub density in the world and St. John's has the highest rated restaurant in all of Canada too (those Newfies know how to eat and drink!). Be sure to go to Cape Spear, the eastern most point in North America - and watch the whales and icebergs swim/float by (with binoculars) - and go before dawn to be the first in NA to see the sunrise - but watch out for moose along the way! Also, IMO, the Terry Fox memorial is really worthwhile and easy to go to at ocean - where he dipped his leg in the ocean and started his run. b.t.w. ferry in to PEI on the way back (its right off the highway) and, Confed bridge on the way out and you avoid the $35 toll (you only pay to go in - at least is was when I was there).

Safe miles.
df
 

Motorcycle Mike

Well-known member
The Irish Loop is a cool ride too... very wind swept landscape, no trees at all.

http://www.newfoundlandlabrador.com/PlacesToGo/IrishLoop

When I did that run, I took 11 days... running the Trans Lab, up to L'anse aux Meadows, across to St. Johns, 2 days in St. Johns awaiting my ferry booking (it fills up fast in the summer). I crossed Newfoundland again as I'd rather ride than sit in a boat and took the short ferry to North Sydney, did Cabot Trail and Meat Cove... skipped PEI. 11 days with two days of rest, but I did push it kind of hard, it would have been nice to take it a bit slower.
 

coretechs

New member
I did the Trans-Lab last year.

The road is paved all the way up to Manic Cinq. After that, it's dirt until around Relais Gabriel. It's pavement for a while, then it's dirt again until Labrador City. HWY 500 from Labrador City to Happy Valley-Goose Bay is paved and the 510 from 80km-ish outside HV-GB is gravel all the way to Red Bay.

Be sure to visit the town of St Lewis. Worth the 30km each way detour. Go up the little mountain to the furthest east you can drive on mainland North America (there's a sign and everything!). Also, if you see an old man named Clyde here, let him know James, the guy who visited last September, said hello and wishes him well with catching cod this season.

Just looking at your itinerary, I feel like you're really rushing though Quebec and Labrador. It's up to you how fast you want to go, but I took about six days to go through Labrador to really experience it as much as I could and even then I felt like I rushed it. I hopped from town to town and camped outside each of them and talked with some of the locals. It all depends on what you want out of it, but two or three days wouldn't have been enough time for me. From Port Hope Simpson, I recommend you go down to Pinware and camp at the park, then get the ferry in the morning. I got the 11am one. You generally have to book in advance, but I slipped on last with my motorcycle without booking.

If you have any questions, feel free to pm me.
 

oomis

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Oomis always rushes ... ;)

I do tend to rush, but this trip is actually a relaxed one from a daily mileage perspective, all things considered.

From my pov there are too many variables to really count on enjoying camping in Labrador. The bugs, the weather, the roads, so we're going to make it happen at a pace we're comfortable with so we can get to Gros Morne with time to spare. That's where the relaxing can happen...
 

Craig66

Member
Have you left. I'm an experienced (dirt/road) rider seeking a riding partner to do the translab or I could go the other way and do the cabot trail -- I'm only going one way, however, as I plan to leave my bike in NL.
 

GreyGhost

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Have you left. I'm an experienced (dirt/road) rider seeking a riding partner to do the translab or I could go the other way and do the cabot trail -- I'm only going one way, however, as I plan to leave my bike in NL.

I think he left a few days ago.
 

oomis

Well-known member
Site Supporter
yup, I finished the tlh a couple of days ago and am in NL now.
 

Top Bottom