Monday, July 19, 2010
Burnt Island Ecological Reserve
To paddle or to hike - the travelers dilemma, and so it was when visiting the Burnt Island Reserve off the community of Raleigh in northern Newfoundland. When we looked out from our shoreside cabins, the day looked foggy and the breeze was offshore. Perhaps it was a day to hike on Burnt Island we thought. This turned out to be both a good idea and a not so good one.
We drove over to the island and the rather rough road and parked at the 'trailhead'. As the photos show, the place seems barren and desolate, yet there are gems to be found when one looks around. For one, it is interesting and colourful cave at the sea's edge. Where does that marvelous blue come from in such a drab environment?
We walked out to the northern tip of the island to watch the swell action at the base of the cliffs. Back-tracking, we came across these 'cannon holes' blasted out by wave action when the island sat lower in the sea years ago. Some were large enough to stand in and walk about Others inter-connected via interior tunnels. To bad the swell wasn't bashing into them the day we were there. What a sight that would have been!
At the north tip the swell was up and watching the waves come in made me want to run and get our kayaks. While the wave action was too much for my rock-hopping skills, I love to see the spray from the outside looking shoreward rather than the reverse. The fog had also lifted somewhat and we could see whales feeding offshore just a few tens of meters away. What a great opportunity that would have been! Alas, we'd opted to hike. The boats were at least an hour or more away.