Bear Hill

Bear Hill at the west end of Frasers Beach
[#1] Photo 15 of 392: Bear Hill at the west end of Frasers Beach
Taken 2009 August 5 from about 1½ km (0.9 mi) north of the middle of Frasers Beach
GPS 47°02.833'N 60°34.848'W

I apologize for photo #1, but it is the best photo I have of Bear Hill from far enough off shore to illustrate the area I wish to discuss on this page, so after mature consideration, I have decided to use it. The bright sun and the haze together conspire to make it a challenging mixture of light and dark that, in its current form, is about the best I can do to clean it up. The “slide” at the left and Frasers Beach have been covered thoroughly on the previous page. The grassy meadow on the northern side was a surprise to me when I first saw it, as the aspect of Bear Hill from Cape St Lawrence (seen later in this essay) emphasizes the gravel flanks and the forested crown, both seen here, but not in their full glory. The rock slabs at the centre right and right of the photo are very clearly similar to those seen in the “slide”; surely, the upper portion of the “slide” must once have borne vegetation as those to the right still do; the slabs of rock at the right are at very much the same angle as those of the “slide”, if not even steeper, yet they have retained their vegetation at the top. One wonders what this whole structure must have looked like 100,000 years ago…

The peak to the right of Bear Hill is an unnamed mountain that lies to the south of Bear Hill; the Lighthouse Trail to Cape St Lawrence crosses its flanks in the col between it and Bear Hill; anyone who has hiked the trail down to the Cape will surely recall the look-off (at GPS 47°01.818'N 60°35.277'W) there that offers the first view of the coast below as far as the Cape.

A telephoto shot from below yields the heavily pockmarked cliff faces of the eastern side of the summit of Bear Hill seen in photo #2. They are certainly of the same nature as those seen in the last two photos on the previous page, but appear to my geologically untrained eyes as quite different in nature from the great recumbent flattish slabs of rock found on either side of Bear Hill. In gauging the height of the cliffs seen here, note the height of the full-grown tree on the summit at the far right. A noticeable amount of whitish rock is seen at and just right of centre; again, I suspect that this is gypsum, especially as it looks rather crumbly in this telephoto view. This photo also brings into sharp relief the fracturing and erosion of the strata at the upper end of the “slide”.

[continued below]

The eastern cliffs above the “slide”
[#2] Photo 16 of 392: The eastern cliffs above the “slide”
Taken 2012 August 22 from the waters off the middle of Frasers Beach
GPS 47°02.157'N 60°34.740'W
From nearly head on
[#3] Photo 17 of 392: From nearly head on
Taken 2009 August 5 from the waters close to shore west of Bear Hill
GPS 47°02.288'N 60°35.079'W

Again, my apologies for the poor quality of photo #3, which suffers from the glare of the sun on the lens in the upper portion: I have to make do with what I have. This view from the beautiful turquoise waters at the bottom to the hazy glare of the sun at the summit, shows the northern cliffs better than any other in my collection. The recumbent “slide” abuts the sheer vertical “castle tower” equipped with a “prow”, formed of rocks at a 60° slant, jutting into the sea. What a strange collocation of structures in so short a distance along this shore!

Photo #4, taken from considerably further west, is another view of Bear Hill and the exposed cliff faces to the west that drop down into the water. Note in particular the great slab left of centre in the water and the isolated islet just right of centre; both appear to have become detached through the processes of erosion from the cliff faces above. As one’s eye moves to the left at the base of Bear Hill, other chunks can also be seen in the water; their reddish hues contrast sharply with the greys and blacks of the rocks above. Another striking feature of these rock faces is the presence of lines of intruded igneous material appearing as long white streaks, particularly noticeable at the far right of the photo above the water level and left of centre above the great detached slabs, but seen elsewhere along this coast.

Side view from the west
[#4] Photo 18 of 392: Side view from the west
Taken 2012 August 22 from about 200 m (650 ft) off shore halfway between Bear Hill and Cape St Lawrence
GPS 47°02.457'N 60°35.272'W