Trans Labrador Highway - Page 4 - Honda Goldwing Forums
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post #31 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 05:54 AM
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This may be late, but my wife and I finished riding the Trans-Labrador Highway and Quebec Highway 389 July 26, 2017, and I thought I would provide a summary of our experience. We rode a 2015 GL1800 and pulled an Escapade trailer. We took the ferry from St. Barbe, Newfoundland to Blanc-Sablon, Quebec and stayed in a motel a few miles from the ferry terminal the day we arrived. The total distance from the ferry terminal in Blanc-Sablon, Quebec to Baie-Comeau, Quebec is approximately 1,190 miles.



The day after we arrived from Newfoundland, we rode from Forteau to Port Hope Simpson. The first 50 miles along the coast are paved, but the pavement is in very poor shape. When we were there, people who live along the coastal section of the highway were protesting the condition of the highway by slowing traffic arriving from and departing to Newfoundland. The next 90 miles, from Red Bay to Port Hope-Simpson, are hard packed dirt that is very rough. In some parts of this section the road has rock or gravel, but it is in poor condition.



The second day we rode from Port Hope-Simpson to Happy Valley-Goose Bay, which is approximately 270 miles. Slightly over 200 miles is unpaved, but it is in better shape than the section from Red Bay to Port Hope-Simpson. We stayed two nights in Happy Valley-Goose Bay and rode to Labrador city, approximately 350 miles, in one day. The Trans-Labrador Highway from Happy Valley-Goose Bay to the Quebec provincial line is paved, but the condition varies from good to poor.



Quebec Highway 389 is 355 miles long including over 100 miles of dirt road. The dirt section of the road is between the Labrador/Quebec provincial line and Relais-Gabriel. We rode from Labrador City to Relais-Gabriel, about 260 miles in one day. The dirt portion of the road is the worst road I have ever been on. Trucks servicing iron ore mining operations in Labrador City and Fermont, Quebec use the road. The trucks have ground the dirt into a fine powder, and in many places, it is several inches thick. The road also has a crown, which meant that for several miles I rode in thick dust on the side of my tires. When trucks passed us going in the opposite direction, they kicked up so much dust, that we could not see for several seconds. About thirty miles of this section of the road was the hardest part of the ride.



From Relais-Gabriel to Baie-Comeau, about 150 miles, the road is paved, and generally, it is in good shape. We rode this section in one day.



The total length of the Trans-Labrador Highway and Quebec 389 is about 1,200 miles and approximately one-third is unpaved. Although it was hard riding, we enjoyed it, and I recommend it to any motorcycle rider looking for an adventure. I do not think there is a more remote road or a road in worse condition in North America. However, an adventure bike may be more appropriate than a Goldwing pulling a trailer.


Myself,Jackoamerica and another just went through from Manic 5 to Lab city the first part of gravel with the rain was a mud soup. Very slippery and difficult to drive. Plus having to follow the grader was not pleasant had to stay in it's tracks until a decent hill because the mud was so bad.



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post #32 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 06:56 AM
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I wondered if the person who made the original post took the trip. I glad you made it back safely.
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post #33 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 07:34 AM
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@gbushong Very nice detailed write up, I am sure it will help others, thanks and welcome to the GWOF from Pa.
Hmmmmm! After reading his report, not sure I want to tackle that, even with the trike. We'll see.

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post #34 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 07:47 AM Thread Starter
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Yes we met at the hotel in Labrador City on the 23nd. When we met you went on a rant about the navigation system.

My experience was similar to yours except I hit a lot of rain and fog. 12 out of thirteen days were either rain or very very heavy fog. Only the second day was dry. The trip was so wet that at one point the inside of my instrument cluster fogged up.

Highlight of my trip while on the Trans-Labrador-Highway playing chicken with a black bear , getting mooned at one of the rest stops and almost getting stranded 130 miles from Goose Bay when sand and grit got in the ignition switch.

Fun trip not as bad as some on Youtube would make you think but also not for the casual rider.
Over all the trip from Red Bay Labrador to Lasalle at the end of rte389 you will do about 400 miles of dirt,gravel,sand poorly maintained roads.


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post #35 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 11:25 AM
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Welcome to the forum, gbushong and thanks for sharing your trip with us.

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post #36 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 03:22 PM
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Happy Goose Bay -

A few years ago I met a Newfoundlander while camping at Lake Louise near Banff National Park, Alberta. He called himself a "Goofy Newfie" and told the funniest stories I've ever heard in my life. Many were about fishing boats and growing up along the shores of Happy Goose Bay (?). While trying to set my tent up that night he had me laughing so hard beer came out my nose. Great guy - never did make it that far into eastern Canada but the New Foundland area sounded like a beautiful place to see.

Michael
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post #37 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-31-2017, 01:48 PM
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I'm in and planning a trip for 2018. Lots of research and gear choices to start making.
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post #38 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-31-2017, 05:47 PM
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I just returned from this trip not bad the road can have some pretty severe washboards at times but nothing you can't handle. The section from Manic 5 to Gabrielle can be very difficult if wet/ raining


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