While passing back through Rocky Harbour, from L’Anse aux Meadows, we hiked a very unique trail. In Gros Morne National Park there’s a trail called the Tablelands. The Tablelands is a very unique trail. It is made up of ultramafic rock peridotite. What does that mean? Well, basically the rocks that you see today were originally on the earth’s mantle and they were forced up from the depths during a plate collision several hundred million years ago.
This is one of the reasons that Gros Morne National Park is registered as a world heritage site from UNESCO.
It was an amazing hike. It’s labeled as an easy trail, which it was. Just 4km, or just over 2.5 miles if you are reading this in the US, which you more than likely are. It starts out with a nice boardwalk over some streams and water.
People say that when you hike the Tablelands you feel like you are walking along alien terrain. That, I would have to say, did feel true for us. The rocks have a lot of metals such as magnesium in them, which give them that brown color.
The mountains at the Tablelands are over 500 million years old. The geology here marks a time when the continents of North America and Africa collided. This pushed the rocks, originally beneath the ocean, to the surface where they lay today. There are only a few other places in the world that you can see these types of rocks, and they are all over-seas. This is the only place on this side of the world, to see this phenomena.
This is a must see when in this area. When we go back to Newfoundland, and yes, we will make a return trip, we’ll probably hit this trail again. It was that nice.
At the end of the boardwalk trail there was a small waterfall from one of the streams.
The waterfall was a nice place to stop and have a snack. Then it was a little off the trail blazing for us. We went into the valley and up to a cliff area to explore around.
As you can see, we had beautiful weather again. Their was a slight breeze that made the hike much more enjoyable. I can imagine how hot this trail is when the sun gets beating down on you and theirs no wind.
There is very little vegetation on this trail. The vegetation that is here is actually hundreds of years old. Their are wildflowers and small (less than in inch tall) evergreens.
These Pitcher Plants are everywhere. They collect water in their tube like petals which attract bugs. Then the bugs get caught and the plant eats the bug. That’s nature for ya.
At the beginning of the path there is actually some berry bushes that fill the air with a sweet aroma.
Speaking of the beginning of the path. Once we hit the path head, David made an Inuksuk.
An Inuksuk is a traditional way of marking a path. It dates back hundreds of years when the Inuit and other arctic people would go out hunting, marking their way back. At least this is what is believed to be true.
So the Tablelands is a vast space filled with rocks from earth’s mantle. Their’s not a lot of vegetation and what vegetation their is, is hundreds of years old.
Sounds kind of sparse, but it really is awesome. So peaceful and quiet. Listening to the water running down from the mountains. The gravel crunching under your feet. No birds. No trees. Different from any other hike we’ve taken.