Fogo Island is unique unto itself. When you arrive, you know you're in Newfoundland, but there is something different. Call it a vibe, call it a sense of pride. Whatever it is, Fogo Islanders are distinctly proud. They each own a piece of this beautiful bit of the World and you can tell. Unlike some places (that will go unnamed), folk here welcome tourists. Tourism dollars are well spent on the island, with numerous accommodations and eateries that range from modest to luxurious. I suppose the fact that there's a lengthy drive to get to Fogo, combined with a ferry ride, residents of this tiny island probably appreciate the effort. The people of Fogo are, unsurprisingly, some of the nicest you'll meet anywhere. Fortunately for visitors, this cliche holds truer than almost anywhere else on the planet.
This pride of ownership is evident in Fogo's extensive trail systems. For the novice to the expert, there is something for everyone. One such trail that really stood out to us was the Lion's Den trail. This 4.2 kilometer jaunt wasn't particularly difficult, but where it goes is what makes it special.
The trail is named after one of four of it's resettled communities along the shoreline. Each of the four were formed because of the bountiful fishing grounds just offshore. Many communities in out port Newfoundland like these were relocated in the early 1900's, as sustaining life proved to be too difficult to justify. Homes were abandoned, others were towed by boat to neighbouring towns. Lock's Cove, Eastern Tickle, Shoal Tickle, and of course, Lion's Den were all deserted in favour of an easier life elsewhere.
The start of the trail features the Marconi Interpretation Station, where wireless transmissions were sent all over the province in order to aide fisherman and communities. It was the second site to receive a distress call from the Titanic.
Eastern Tickle, pictured above, was the largest of the four towns. This was a bustling community from the mid 1800's until the last house was floated to Fogo a hundred years later. There was a school, a fish plant, and at it's height, a population totaling about 107. Embedded rock pathways are still evident, as well as dugouts where houses once sat.
Shoal Tickle, being the smallest of the four communities, was first to be abandoned. The last residents here left in the 1930's. To me, this is nicest area along the route to live, if it were now a choice to make. You can see the Fogo Island Inn in the background.
The walk to the Lion's Den, where the most remote community bearing the same name was located.
Remnants of the past can still be found if you look hard enough.
The trail is very well built and maintained. It features a lot of boardwalks, steps, and clear pathways. Look out for foxes, as there was a lot of evidence of them being there (poop!).
Summiting Lane's Lookout is a worthwhile side track for 360 degree views.
Looking down at the town of Fogo in all its autumn glory.
Enjoying a bottle of red after an afternoon of exploring and taking a hundred photos.
The hike back down from the look out.
The last stretch of the loop as the light was fading
It isn't a long hike, but it does tax the legs a little. Take water if its hot, red wine if it's any other temperature.