June Highlights from Exploring the Northern Peninsula

Why should you explore the Great Northern Peninsula in June?

As a hiker and outdoor guide, June has always been my favourite month to visit the northern peninsula. In fact, working with Wild Women Expeditions to refine their Iceberg and Arts Tour has given me more and more insight into why this is the best time of the year to visit.

I have decided there are 6 reasons June is the best time to go north;
  1. there are few(er) CFA's around (read: less visitor's)
  2. there are icebergs
  3. the weather is perfect for hiking
  4. the wild flowers are just blooming
  5. the trails are less busy
  6. the wildlife is everywhere! 

1. Less CFA's

What's a CFA anyways?!! 
 
Come From Away - noun. A person who's origin or place of birth is somewhere other than Newfoundland. CFA's, tourist, visitor, and mainlander are all used interchangeably to identify anyone not from Newfoundland. 
 
Since Newfoundland's summers are pretty short, most folks tend to visit in July month or August month, when it's the warmest. Coming in June allows you to beat the rush of RV's and campers, bus tours and generally packed boat tours and restaurants. Northern Newfoundland's capacity is limited (due to the short season) so my advice is come early!
 
Exploring the Northern Peninsula
Exploring the Northern Peninsula

2. There's Icebergs! 

The annual parade of Icebergs makes it's way along the north coast of Newfoundland gracing us with 10, 000+ year old ice sculptures.

These majestic wonders of nature drift down from Greenland and spend 5-6 weeks gracing our shores for all the world to see. This is truly a wonder of nature because of it's such a rare event!

Did you know that the western Atlantic ocean is the best place in the WHOLE world to see icebergs?!!

I didn't, but after researching and coming across the US Coast Guard website about Iceberg Locations, I can confidently say this is true. For any better iceberg viewing you would have to go to Antartica or above 70 degrees north....umm, no thanks....I'll stay in Newfoundland!

Exploring the Northern Peninsula
Exploring the Northern Peninsula

3. Weather is great for being active

Is it really perfect for hiking? I think so but I don't like heat. I also don't mind a sou' west wind gusting 40km/hr or intermittent drizzle....and if June brings a bit o' fog, well that means the caplin are rolling! 

Weather in June is lovely. Sunny and cloudy days off set with the odd rainy or foggy day makes for interesting travel days. If it was the same all the time, it would be boring and we would have nothing to talk about!

The cooler temps mean the bugs aren't out full force yet and the wind keeps them down anyways. The warming of June month also brings out my next point....

 

4. The Wild Flowers are Blooming...

In full force mid to late June! If you come for 2-3 weeks in June you can watch the unfurling of lady slippers, blue flag lilies, pitcher plants, butterworts, violets and much more. June is a colourful month, enjoyable for photographers and flora nerds alike.

Check out this field guide for more detail; Wildflowers of Newfoundland and Labrador: Field Guide

Exploring the Northern Peninsula

5. The Trails

Newfoundland is only just becoming known as a hiking destination - come now! Coming to hike in June means at more often than not, you will have a trail all to your self. Peace and quite on the trail really allows you too absorb the magic of Newfoundlands coastline, forests and fresh sea air. 

As summer picks up, there will be more and more folks out hiking and working on the trails. Come early to beat the rush. 

Purchase Hikes of Western Newfoundland Guide Book

Purchase Hikes of Western Newfoundland Guide Book

Exploring the Northern Peninsula
Exploring the Northern Peninsula

6. Wildlife is EVERYWHERE!

Because it's still cool and there is still some snow in the mountains, the wildlife are still hanging out in the lowlands. On my first tour (June 15-22) we saw 5 caribou, 12 moose, humpback and minke whales, as well as a wide variety of sea birds.  On the next tour (June 25-July 2), we didn't spot any caribou but we saw more moose and WAY more sea birds. 

Exploring the Northern Peninsula
Exploring the Northern Peninsula
Exploring the Northern Peninsula
Exploring the Northern Peninsula

 

If I was visiting Newfoundland, knowing what I know now, I would only come in June or September, but I firmly believe that June is the best because of the abundance of icebergs, whales and wildlife. 

Have you been up the Great Northern Peninsula? When did you go and how did you like it?

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