Nova Scotia: between Moncton, New Brunswick and Truro, Nova Scotia
Here is the itinerary for the 155 km along Highway #2 (NB) and Highway #104 (NS) between Moncton, New Brunswick and Truro, Nova Scotia:
The area east of Moncton (on the north side of the Petitcodiac) & Dieppe (on the south side of the Petitcodiac) are part of the Tantramar eco-zone. The name Tantramar comes from French for loud noise Trantimarre, referring to the noise from large flocks of birds in the area, and migrating through it. The area, after early deforestation, has been stunted by Fundy fogs and winds. You will also pass an area of drumlins (teardrop-shaped sand & Gravel deposits left behind by glaciers as they receded) beside the Peticodiac River.
East of Sackville you enter the Tantramar Marshes, where dykes built by early Acadian settlers in 1686 hold back the sea and build lush farmlands on the recovered land. To fertlize the land, the settlers occasionally let the sea flood the land.
The settlement here grew to over a thousand people, and was defended by Fort Beausejour (just inside present-day Nova Scotia). The fort was taken by the English in 1755 and the Acadians were resettled around Memramcook and Dorchester. You will also notice a set of high antennas, on Coles Island eat of Sackville, which are used by CBC Radio International for their overseas shortwave broadcasts. By anchoring them in salty marshy ground, it was believed the electrical ground would improve signal transmission.
Once in Nova Scotia, the area south of the Trans-Canada around Springhill has a rich history of coal mining. The coal is a result of tropical forests from 350 million years ago, which left behind decaying vegetable matter that under incredible pressure from the rocks deposited above them was compressed into coal. Nearby Oxford has built up accumulations of salt and sediment from long-ago oceans, that now is mined for rock salt and gypsum.
Recently the Trans-Canada route was realigned through the Cobequid Pass, which used a public-private partnership to build a short toll stretch of the highway to speed traffic. This route takes travelers close to Wentworth Provincial Park and Wentworth Ski Hill. The Cobequid Mountains are three times older than the Rocky Mountains, and 200 million years ago were likely as high, but erosion has worn them down to their current 400 metre (1200 ft) elevation. Cyclists should take the older highway 4, which follows a more level and more lightly traveled route.
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