the newfoundland packing challenge

When we went to Ireland in 2001, some friends told me an old cliche: be prepared for all four seasons, every day. Perhaps we were just lucky, but we didn't find quite that much variation. It was November, so often overcast and chilly, but it was mostly what I would consider typical autumn weather.

But Newfoundland, from what I hear, really is like that. A Campaigner friend who grew up in Newfoundland has been giving me tips and advice. In our email exchange today (with her parents' addresses!), I said, "Packing for this is a challenge, but we're trying to prepare for all four seasons.". Her reply:
Quite often experienced in the same day. A warm sweater and windbreaker is essential for hiking in Gros Morne. When you see how bent the trees are around the shores you'll know why. Then as you progress inland, you'll need to take off the sweater, then 10 mins later you'll need it again. They give out light parkas on whale watching tours in St. John's. This is not enough -- you'll need a warm sweater as well. Even if the temp is 25 degrees, it'll be freezing on the water, this is the North Atlantic. When I went, I was wearing a turtleneck, wool sweater, fleece sweatshirt, plus the jacket they give you on the boat and it still took about two hours to thaw out once we got off the boat. And it was a really warm day.

Now, I am the woman who spent her anniversary in an Ice Hotel. I love the cold, but I do need to be dressed for it. I also don't like being damp (people with arthritis usually find damp weather very uncomfortable), so I have to take extra care with a damp cold, as opposed to the dry cold we had in Quebec.

We went back into historical data for Newfoundland weather (very cool feature), and it seems like we're arriving on the cusp of summer. Right now it's cold, but if the last few years are a guide, it will get much warmer while we're there.

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