End of South Fourchu Road

End of South Fourchu Road
Photo 10 of 41: End of South Fourchu Road
Taken 2009 October 8 in Fourchu from the South Fourchu Road near its end
GPS 45°43.031'N 60°14.387'W

Wednesday night’s heavy rains and strong winds continued into Thursday morning. I decided nevertheless to drive over to the east coast and, if nothing else, to get some grey photos of the Atlantic coast under storm conditions. I didn’t expect to see a lot of colours in the leaves as the trees there are mainly evergreens.

I first drove out to Isle Madame; there was a bit of sun out on the way there, but it was soon gone by the time I reached Lennox Passage. After passing through more welcome road construction in Arichat, I ended up in Petite-Anse on Petit-de-Grat Island, where the winds off St Peters Bay were fierce. I got soaked in under two minutes taking a few photos of the surf pounding against the shore and a rocky offshore islet, not because it was raining that hard, but because the wind was carrying the ocean spray up and onto the land above; worse, my camera got covered with salt spray, which I had to quickly remove. Nevertheless, in a strange sort of way, it was still a quite beautiful scene, with the vegetation on the land having already taken on the rusts and oranges and browns of fall without yet having eliminated the greens of the summer, not unlike what one sees in the photo above. I drove back by Rocky Bay and continued on to St Peters, where I stopped for lunch. I then drove out to Point Michaud, where I got more photos of surf crashing onto the shore, stopped for a brief visit with a friend in L’Ardoise, and then drove the St Peters Fourchu Road (a significant part of the Fleur-de-Lis Trail) from L’Ardoise to Fourchu, where I got the photo of Fourchu Head above from near the end of the South Fourchu Road (Google Maps calls this road the St Peters Fourchu Road Extension).

Fourchu is a small picturesque fishing community spread out around both sides of Fourchu Harbour, a narrow inlet of the Atlantic; it lies in Richmond County just south of the Cape Breton County line. The southern side of the harbour closest to the Atlantic is Fourchu Head, seen in the photo above. Although this photo doesn’t make it clear, Fourchu Head is effectively an island connected by a narrow breakwater to Cape Breton—this photo shows the lie of the land much better (and in much better weather!). Fourchu Head has a lighthouse, not of the classical design seen all over Cape Breton Island, but instead formed of circular fibreglass cylinders. But, this day at least, it was the colours of the vegetation, especially the bright red grasses in the foreground, that really caught my eye, though I do also have several photos of the surf breaking on the shore under very grey skies.