blending an assortment of thoughts and experiences for my friends, relations and kindred spirit

blending an assortment of thoughts and experiences for my friends, relations and kindred spirit
By Alison Hobbs, blending a mixture of thoughts and experiences for friends, relations and kindred spirits.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Day 2: fourth time lucky!

Glimpse of the scenery en route to Rouyn-Noranda

We made it to Rouyn-Noranda, finally, over some wild terrain, after handing a cheque to Red for the necessary repairs to PTN. I'm writing this at sunset in our room at Le Noranda. Rouyn-Noranda is an amalgamation of two towns. We had our supper in the other one on the other side of the lake, after walking there along the waterfront from this area which is  dominated by the copper mine. Une mine, une ville! proclaim the slogans. The mine was opened in 1926 and in 1927 the railway came to the few huts that stood on the bank of Lake Osisko, and that was that.

Street in Noranda

Leaving the Gatineau Hills behind us once the weather allowed us to fly, we soon climbed above a low and creamy cloud layer that Chris called "custard". It was smooth up there--good! In our clearance we'd been given a more direct flight path than we'd expected: RADEN, JUNIS, REZIN, YUY. Above the reserve faunique and its lakes the clouds began to rise and cover us, but we could see views through the breaks. The last third of the nearly 3 hour journey was more in cloud and more turbulent because of gusty winds. On the surface they were reporting 20 knot gusts at our destination (CYUY). Chris was asked to go into a hold so as to let a Creebec Dash 8 into the approach ahead of us, and then the Dash 8 pilot kindly cancelled IFR at the last minute to save us the bother of doing this. Our long final was quite exciting enough without the added interest of the hold, because of the crosswind gusts which I must say my pilot handled magnificently. We came in at an impressive angle and I only loosened my grip on the strap as we taxied to the fuel pump.  Here I had to speak French to both the fuel man and the security guard, a young woman who intercepted Chris as he tried to open a forbidden door at the terminal building on his way back from the gents. My French comes in useful on these occasions.

The Noranda copper mine 

Main street, Rouyn
During our 20 minute taxi ride into town we passed what at first looked like the only restaurant in town selling la meilleure poutine du monde, but this evening we found the less deserted district and a tapas bar (Le Cachottier) that could provide us with scrumptious dishes: confit de canard with sugared orange peel for me, and lamb with creamed sweet potatoes––patates douces––for Chris. The high street had been turned into a pedestrian zone for the evening, with rows of open air stalls, and bouncy castles for the children, who were numerous, most of their parents looking no older than 18.

Lake Osisko, Rouyn-Noranda

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