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Shy Lake

Lake Temiscouata in Quebec.

There are three main, over-land escape routes that will get you in and out of the Maritimes: I-95 and The Airline - both in Maine, and the Trans-Canada Highway into Quebec. One of them has a big, yet shy treat along the way.

Even though there are other road links too of course, as truck drivers, we typically find ourselves on one of the first three main over-land escape routes leading to and from the Maritimes.

A striking feature along one of these routes, the Trans Canada Highway in Quebec, is the 45 kilometer-long Lake Temiscouata. We all know it, and I would assume, all appreciate it for its almost Norwegian fjord-like magnificence. Leaving New Brunswick, it is only a couple of kilometers into Quebec when a spectacular view over this natural wonder opens up.


But something strange is going on with this lake. It turns out, it doesn't like to have its picture taken. It is a shy lake, only revealing slim shimmers whenever the camera comes out. Trust me, I have tried it on multiple occasions from multiple angles.

Another camera angle and predictably, the lake stays largely out of view.


Still, it's not as if you can't ever take cool photos here. While on my latest trip to Montreal, the weather over the lake is in quite a state - see opening photo. Lots of drama: updrafts, downdrafts, thermo dynamics, condensation, colliding airflows, a heavy downpour; who knows what is all going on up there, producing these wild and outrageous clouds, the strong wind gusts that come with that and the heavy precipitation clearly visible in the distance.

As I drive by the lake, I need to remind myself that I need to keep my eyes on the road. But my mind wanders off regardless. It is almost as if the sky, for once, has decided to show the lake that it's not a bad thing to throw in a little bit of spectacle and drama for a photo. As if the sky is teaching the lake a lesson. But then I remind myself that the time of the day, and the angle of the sun also play their role. The low light definitely adds to the drama and: these kinds of storm situations mostly happen at the end of hot summer days. I just got my timing right.

The magic of the moment

Next thing I know is that the lake, and most of the weather drama is behind me, and that I keep going towards Rivière-du-Loup and the Saint Lawrence River. When I am parked for the night later that evening, I start my computer to check the photos that I took with my dash-mounted camera. Of course the lake doesn't show much of itself. I knew that. However, the magic of the moment and the magnificence of the scene weren't entirely lost. It already makes me wonder what the scene will be like the next time I travel this route into or out of the Maritimes. Good thoughts to fall asleep with.

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