Photo #1 shows the scene at the mouth of Malcolms Brook. The huge mountain filling the right half of the photo is the Cape Breton Highlands Plateau returning to very close to the shore, as it was at the High Capes. This chunk of the plateau continues from Malcolm Brook nearly to Polletts Cove; I will dub this northern third “Malcolm Brook Mountain” and the middle third “Wreck Brook Mountain”; locals use the name Polletts Cove Mountain for the southern third, though that name does not appear on the topographical map.¹
Photo #2 shows the mouth of Malcolms Brook at the centre of the photo. Though it appears as not much more than a trickle in this very dry summer, Malcolms Brook has carved a huge valley that runs inland to the southeast for more than 1500 m (0.9 mi); it splits into two parts back in the valley: the northern branch starts in a large pond or small lake on the top of the interior plateau and essentially just spills down the sheer mountainside into the valley below; the southern branch climbs gradually up to a col where “Malcolms Brook Mountain” attaches itself to the interior plateau. At the left of photo #2 is “Diamond Mountain Ridge”, the long slope which leads over “Diamond Mountain” to the coast below it. The ridge at the right is the edge of the interior plateau.
¹ I have split the mountain into thirds at the points where Google Earth shows divisions (likely brook beds); I do not know how much of this is what is locally known as Polletts Cove Mountain, but it certainly includes the southern third, if not more.↩
Photo #3, a wide-angled view from off the mouth of Malcolms Brook, gives a better view of the valley that Malcolms Brook has carved. The ridge across the centre of the photo is the interior plateau, to which “Malcolms Brook Mountain” is attached well inland at the point where the southern branch of Malcolms Brook rises to the col that joins them together. As can be seen here, the inland portion of the valley is heavily forested below the ridge; Google Earth’s imagery shows that the gravel/dirt/rubble spot in the centre of the photo is the last in the valley. The trees in the lower elevations are deciduous, but evergreens populate the the upper elevations, even well inland.
Photo #4 is a close-up of the mouth of Malcolms Brook; from this angle, a little bit more water can be seen flowing than appeared in the previous views. Still, on this day at least, it looks as if it would be hard to get one’s feet wet crossing it.
Photo #5, a telephoto view taken on the return trip from further off shore, shows the same area under the bright sun, which does better justice to the several shades of green on the banks at the mouth of Malcolms Brook. It also better brings out the reddish hues in the rocks along the shore.