Photo #1, as wide a wide-angled view as my camera can deliver, shows the mountain I here dub “Sailor Brook Mountain North” because it lies on the north side of Sailor Brook, seen entering Sailor Cove at the right of the photo. Although taken on the return trip when the sun was often out, the number of clouds in the sky caused the sun to alternately shine and darken the terrain below; unfortunately, it was mostly in shadow the particular instant I took this photo. This is the most detailled photo I have of the entire west and south sides of the mountain, though some which show parts of it in better light appear hereafter.
The topographical map gives the height at the summit as above 400 m (1315 ft), putting it among the tallest along this coast (a scan of the topographic maps shows a 420 m (1380 ft) contour line, but that occurs only well inland of the coast (among other places at the summit of “Lowland Cove Twin Peaks”). To give some context to this height, the Empire State Building in New York City has “a roof height of 1,250 feet (381 meters), and with its antenna spire included, it stands a total of 1,454 ft (443.2 m) high”, according to this Wikipedia article; so, if it were plunked down in the Sailor Brook valley below, from the top storey you’d still be looking up at the summit (though from the top of the spire, were you crazy enough to climb up there, you’d be looking down on the summit not far below). As another comparison, the highest point on Cape Breton Island (and in all of Nova Scotia) is 535 m (1750 ft) at White Hill¹ in the North Barren in the Highlands west of Ingonish; hence the mountains on this coast are roughly 115 m (380 ft) lower than the highest point on the Island.
The last photo on the previous page showed the coast of Sailor Cove to the point where what appears at the middle left of photo #1 as a large rectangular cliff in shadow (but is actually just an artefact of the lighting). Photo #2, a telephoto view taken during a welcome burst of sunlight, resumes at this point, more or less where the slope of “Sailor Brook Mountain North” moves upward closing off the glen between it and Lowland Point, and continues to the mouth of Sailor Brook at the far right. “Lowland Point Ridge”, which forms the upper parts of both that glen on the west and the Lowland Brook valley on the east, can be seen here beginning as a slope on the north side of “Sailor Brook Mountain North”. Again, the mountain on the far side of “Lowland Point Ridge” is “Lowland Cove Twin Peaks” rising above Lowland Brook. Note, too, that the coastal plain is interrupted by the descent of the forest almost to the coast to the right of the rectangular cliff in shadow, although a very thin strip remains between the trees and the cliffs, which widens out once again as the mountain approaches Sailor Brook on the right.
¹ For a description of an amazing hike to White Hill and the area nearby, accompanied by numerous photos (click on one to expand it and then use the next button to skip to the next without having to click on each photo), start here. It took them seven and a half hours to cover the 18.5 kilometres to White Hill and they hiked back out on the same day. Even for very fit young folk, this is quite a feat! Thanks very much to Andrew Lavigne for making his photos and experiences available on the web.↩
Photo #3, like photo #2, is a telephoto view, but from somewhat closer than photo #2, that brings the cliffs and the coastal plain just north of Sailor Brook into sharper focus. The reddish-hued rocks seem to be overlaid on the darker grey rocks; perhaps the action of waves has eroded the reddish rocks, exposing the darker grey rocks, likely made of harder material. Notice too the interesting depression whose circular outline looks like a dandelion bloom right of centre, carved into the shore below the plain: clearly, rills (dry this day) flowing down from the mountain above must have carved it on its way into Sailor Cove near the centre of the photo. A close look along this shore shows several other spots carved by run-off from the mountain above.
Photo #4, taken with a middling focal length, shows the face of “Sailor Brook Mountain North” seen from the south, on parts of which trees have successfully established footholds. Notice, however, the several channels streams have carved into the cliffs on its inland end. Unfortunately, the slope of the mountain at the right hides the huge bare areas below these cliffs seen in photo #1, making the forest seem more successful than it really has been, which in no way minimizes its accomplishments.
Photo #5 is a telephoto view of the summit of “Sailor Brook Mountain North”, bringing out the detail of the cliffs on the south side of the mountain and the run-off channels carved into them. Howling winds, of course, have also played a significant rôle in carving out this terrain. All told, an awesome display of Mother Nature’s ways and the undaunted will of living things to make the best of the harsh, rocky, sandy, unforgiving environment in which they find themselves.
Photo #6 is another telephoto view, this time looking past the summit to the ridge beyond. As this photo reminds us, the various “mountains” that will be seen all along this coast are really all just the edges of the Cape Breton Highlands Plateau, through which brooks no bigger than Sailor Brook have carved deep valleys on their way to the Gulf. Somewhat surprising to me in this view is the lack of deciduous trees inland of the summit; nearly all the trees showing there are evergreens, an interesting contrast with the many deciduous trees seen earlier in the cleft carved by Lowland Brook. Also a bit surprising are the meadows seen along the ridge; while high magnification does show some fill in one of the open areas, grass in between the many recumbent rock faces is seen in the others.