Right off the bat let me apologize for the title– I’ve never been to Labrador, but it doesn’t feel right to exclude Labrador from this post. From what I understand, the climate in Labrador is more predictable: glaring hot summers and icy cold winters. Down on the island, however, things get more…interesting.
We’re currently packing for our first trip home since we moved to Alberta in May of 2020 and we are beyond excited to get there. If you’re considering a trip to NL and have never been to our province, you may or may not have heard the phrase: “don’t like the weather? That’s okay, just wait a minute.” Because the weather can and will change on a dime. It’s not uncommon to experience what feels like all four seasons in one day. We’re the province of snow in June and 15-degree February days. Here are some tips on how you can prepare.
Layers. Start with tights or long-johns and work your way out. You’ll want layers of clothes that you can add or remove as the temperature changes, the clouds block the sun, it starts to drizzle and/or flurry, and if you head out in boat (which we highly recommend) you’ll find the sea breeze can cut through even the warmest jackets. This applies to any month of the year.
Waterproof clothing. Newfoundland is the province of RDF (rain, drizzle, and fog). It’s damp a lot of the time and you’ll want something that’ll keep you dry but not too warm on summer days. I don’t recommend an umbrella because it’s always too windy!
Hiking boots. We have some of the most stunning and rugged hiking trails in the world. Bring along something with ankle support for the rocky or rooty sections. Something waterproof is also recommended!
Sunscreen & a hat. I’d suggest packing both a toque (what we sometimes call a stocking cap) to keep you warm and a baseball hat to protect you from the sun. You might want to wear these interchangeably or like some folks around the bay– at the same time. No matter how cold it might feel, the sun can be powerful (and deceiving when the wind is on your face) and those UV rays cut straight through cloud cover. Be smart, pack sunscreen, apply frequently.
Small backpack. You’re going to be going on lots of adventures on our gorgeous island and, if you follow my tips, you’ll have packed lots of layers! Bring a small backpack to carry while you’re hiking, strolling through St. John’s, or wandering little coastal towns that you can toss your unneeded layers into. This will also be handy for your extra hat, your sunscreen, and the little gifts of bread and jam the locals might give you along the way.
See ya in about three weeks after our well-deserved summer vacay in the best place in the world… home.