First, let’s begin with some basic Canadian geography. There are ten provinces and three territories that make up this wonderful country of Canada. Much of the land to the north is uninhabited because of the terrain, and not at all because of the cold weather that looms the north, as is believed in popular myths. Each province and territory has its own capital city of course, but here we will navigate away from those popular tourist destinations and discuss a few smaller towns that may be places you would want to detour to along your way, just because they have such unique names, and may be the ”diamond in the rough” on your Canadian tour.
Located on the east coast of Newfoundland at Conception Bay, a bay that opens up to the Atlantic Ocean, Bacon Cove is a fishing and farming settlement. At Conception Bay and nearby Bell Island’s Lance Cove, you will hear the fate of four ore carrier ships that were struck in 1942 by torpedoes, the closest that WWII ever came to Canadian territory. These shipwrecks that are still quite well-preserved by the chilly waters of the Atlantic can still be seen, and best seen through diving excursions. Bacon Cove, according to local legend, supposedly got its name after another shipwreck lost its cargo of pigs. When they washed ashore, legend has it there was a lot of bacon cured. You’re thinking of bacon now aren’t you?
It’s a tiny hamlet (small settlement), located in the Waterloo region of Ontario, more specifically in Wilmot Township, which is a small urban and rural municipality with approximately 20,000 residents. Punkeydoodles Corners is the spot that is where the counties of Perth, Oxford and Waterloo intersect. Legend has it that the hamlet once had a blacksmith and a tavern in the late nineteenth century. The old German tavern keeper was always singing his version of “Yankee Doodle”, but to many it sounded more like “Punkey Doodle”, and so became the name of the hamlet: Punkey Doodle for the song and “corners” because of the intersection. There is no major attraction at the intersection, but who wouldn’t want to say they’ve been to a place called “Punkeydoodles”!
This hamlet can be found approximately 91 kilometres southwest of High Level, Alberta and about 120 kilometres above Peace River. In 1896, with the fur trade beginning to grow, this was a key area for the Hudson’s Bay Company to set up. Today, Keg River is a farming community. It is still a popular area for fishing, hunting and camping so it’s definitely a nice stop over for anyone who enjoys these activities. The hamlet as you may have guessed was named for the river and the river apparently got its name from the kegs of brew found in it!
It’s a word that is still commonly used in the Pacific Northwest and it originates from Chinook Jargon, a trade language that was used in the 19th century and early 20th century, between Europeans and First Nations people. In the aboriginal language of the Chinook people, “skookum” means “strong” and “chuck” means “water”. Essentially this could be a reference to not only strong rivers but also strong rapids in the region.
The village of Skookumchuck is located along the Kootenay River and the area is a definite must-see if you are en route to exploring the provincial parks and the natural hot springs. There are accommodations to be found in Skookumchuck, or you can choose to go “RV-ing” or camping.
Discover Canada and all its little hidden gems!