L’Archevêque Harbour

L’Archevêque Harbour
Photo 17 of 30: L’Archevêque Harbour
Taken 2008 June 10 in L’Archevêque from L’Archevêque Road near its end
GPS 45°37.62?'N 60°34.58?'W

This view to the west shows the other half of the horseshoe cove that forms L’Archevêque Harbour. To the far left outside the scope of this photo, a breakwater juts out from the shore to provide additional protection to the wharf one sees at the left. The buildings perched on the hill at the far right are similar to the one on the other side of the cove seen in the previous photo.

Except for the hypothetical fishing camps, this harbour resembles fishing harbours seen all over Cape Breton, though it is smaller than most. The ramp just left of the centre of the photo is used to launch the boats in the spring and to take them out in the fall. The buildings behind the wharf are barns assigned to the individual fishermen, who use them to store their traps and other equipment and supplies; it is not uncommon for them to also contain refrigerators wherein beverages are kept cool for the returning fisherman (hence the need for electricity attested by the utility poles) and some even sport grills for cooking the freshly caught lobster, which is indeed a heavenly treat! At the wharf, one sees the refrigerated truck into which the day’s catch is loaded as the fishermen return from their labours; by unspoken arrangement, they stagger their return times to the wharf so that there is no long wait while the catch is transferred to the truck for delivery later that afternoon to market or processing plant. On such a lovely day as this one, the life of a fisherman may seem idyllic, but it is hard work, made dangerous when, as is often the case, the winds are chill and the seas stormy; moreover, in the spring of 2008, the high cost of fuel and the low market price for the catch have combined to place many fishermen in a very precarious financial position because their expenses exceeded their income: I saw many traps all over Cape Breton that had been pulled well before the end of the season. This is definitely not an easy life!