Brooke O'Connell

Quebec Road Trip

UncategorizedBrooke O'Connell2 Comments

Hi there! Just got back from a wonderful trip in Quebec!!  Actually, I am still here in Quebec enjoying the summer, but thought I would upload some images of the road trip I took with my good friend Nicole.   With some good tunes and snacks we left my folks' place at Lac Guidon and headed to Quebec city.  We spent a couple nights in a great hostel and explored the town.  Caught a free Cirque du Soleil show, took a guided ghost tour, bought fresh berries and cheese at the market, and much much more!  We headed North East following the St-Lawrence and stopped over in Baie St-Paul.  Stayed at a wonderful campsite overlooking the town.  Here is my painting of our view.

StPaul_72 DPI

Baie St-Paul is famous for it's artist community.  It's easy to understand why.  The landscape is amazing and the little town is full of galleries and wonderful little shops.  We spent a couple hours sitting on the beach relaxing.  Here is what I painted.



We continued along the St-Lawrence enjoying the rolling mountains and entranced by the lovely French Canadian houses and flowers.  Each town seemed to be more charming than the next.  We crossed the Saguenay River by ferry to get to Tadoussac.  Nicole and I got out of the car on the ferry to check out the view... and saw a whale!!!  It was definitely a first for both of us.  We had planned to go kayaking with the whales past Tadoussac, and so this sighting was very exciting!!

Our campsite in Les Bergeronnes was spectacular -right on the river surrounded by wild flowers.  Here was one of our views.



The air had a wonderful salty smell and the weather was amazing.  We went kayaking the following day.  Upon arrival at the tour location, we were given an hour long kayak course.  As we stood on the shoreline we could see whales about 50 feet away.  We were very excited!!  We put our wet suits on and brought our kayaks to the water.  We set out in a group of 6 people plus our guide.  Nicole and I shared a Kayak.  As soon as we paddled out of the little bay we began seeing porpoises.  It was really amazing.  We paddled further and soon we could see whales.  The water was fairly calm and we could hear the whales blowing water out of their spouts.  When the whales came towards us we would gather together in our kayaks and stop paddling.  It was an amazing experience being on the water calmly waiting, listening, and looking for the whales to pop up.  Our guide told us at one point that there had to be 100 porpoises around us.  The mink whales we saw were huge!  According to our guide, we only saw about 20% of their bodies.  We read later that the size of the average mink whales is equal to 2 buses + a car.  Pretty big!!!

That experience will be hard to top.  We loved our stay in Les Bergeronnes.  We took a trip into the Saguenay Fjord which was also quite impressive.  The last painting I have included is from our last day.  Before we packed up all of our camping gear we went to sit on the beach.  The beach had lovely huge red-orange boulders.  Nicole went off to read and I found a spot to sit and paint.  We spent over an hour on the beach watching the fog roll in and out.  It was amazing.  Here is my painting.


The white you see between the water and sky is fog.....I am still trying to figure out how to paint fog using watercolours.  Painting in these spots was really meditative and relaxing!!  I used salty St-Lawrence water to dilute my paints which I suppose ties the work to those places even more (hopefully the salt won't effect my paper too much).

Anyways, the trip was awesome.  If any of you are considering traveling to that area I would say GO Go GO!!  The people were great, the food fantastic, and the landscape was amazing!!