I spent 3 days hiking 3 different sections (about 40km)of the East Coast Trail, including a round-trip hike from Petty Harbour to the Cape Spear Lighthouse and back. I also went to the lighthouse the morning of 10/19/13 to watch the sunrise. Photographers interested in picture taking here will want to sit at the top of the hill near the refurbished and shorter lighthouse. Face north (downhill) to photograph the modern, taller lighthouse to catch the sun as it hits the east side of the structure. Take lots of pictures as the sun literally changes the color of the rock, etc very quickly. If I took 5 or 6 pictures in a minutes time, all were very different!
The hike was absolutely beautiful. It was impossible to get lost as the well worn trail follows the coastline the whole 10km. At times the trail enters some wooded areas, but again, the Atlantic is always to the east and the trail was very apparent. I was most impressed at how well maintained the entire trail was. In boggy areas, there were long sections of 2 x 6 or 8 planking side by side keeping one dry and also helping to discourage damage to the trails. Much of the planking was tightly wrapped in chicken wire for traction. In other soft, wet areas, flat stepping stones were strategically placed about 18" apart. There were several neat places to set up a tent in the evergreens if one wanted to spend the night on the trail. Some parts of the ECT can be pretty steep and a little precarious if you have children along. The Cape Spear section was really not bad in that regard. I saw moose sign but no wildlife other than some birds and squirrels. Great place and I hope to go back again to hike more sections of the ECT.
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