On the next to the last day of the festival, I was on my way to the lunchtime cèilidh at the Celtic Music Interpretive Centre in Judique when, after having run into rain only a few minutes earlier, the sun burst through the clouds and I stopped for a few photos.
Michaels Landing is a Province of Nova Scotia Historic Site, a small park with interpretive panels and a commemorative cairn marking the founding of Judique by Michael MacDonald and his compatriots who landed there in 1775 and the Gaelic culture and traditions they brought with them that still endure in the area. The Celtic Shores Coastal Trail, the new designation for the Trans-Canada Trail from Port Hastings to Inverness (still also known as the Railway Trail), passes through the park, which has been given a kiosk, park benches, and a shaded picnic table. The site lies on the shores of Indian Point Pond, the outflow of the Judique Intervale Brook, across from Indian Point and is separated from St Georges Bay by Indian Point Beach, a long arching grass-covered sand dune that leaves only a very narrow gap for the brook’s outflow on its northern end. This makes for a very productive estuary frequented by many birds. It’s a lovely place to stop and reflect on Cape Breton’s natural beauty and cultural history and a fine spot from which to hike the world-class trail in either direction.
Photo #1 looks out from the trail at the long arching sand dune, illuminated by the sun, that lies across Indian Point Pond; the land at the left is a marshland that borders the outlet into the estuary of a small unnamed pond across the road from the park; had the sun been shining on it as well, it would have been a fine illustration of the array of beautiful colours the marsh grass assumes in the fall.
Photo #2 is a telephoto view of the right hand portion of photo #1, in which the marsh grass adjacent to the sand dune at the right of the photo can be seen in its true colours, though the darker grasses in the foreground are actually much more varied in their colours.
Photo #3 is of a red tree approaching its peak at the south end of Indian Point Beach, seen at the far right of the photo. It too shows the marsh grasses in the filtered sun of the day, bringing out more of the richness of their colours than were seen in photo #2.
Photo #4 looks across the outflow of Judique Intervale Brook, with a fine stand of colourful marsh grass at the edge of the park’s green grass just across the trail. The gloomy northern skies contrast rather nicely with the sun shining on the far shore of Indian Point, where changing trees are in evidence; the bushes show traces of red, but remain predominantly green. The dark rust-coloured plants at the edges of the marsh grass add an interesting counterpoint of colour to the scene.
Photo #5 looks well to the left of photo #4, with which there is no overlap, at the trees on Indian Point along the far shore. Amongst the oranges and the yellows and the reds and not a few evergreens are still found a number of green deciduous trees that either haven’t changed at all or are only beginning to change, each seemingly responding to the beat of a different drummer.
Photo #6 was taken from the side of the Cèilidh Trail looking obliquely across at a lovely stand of yellow trees; I was a second too late to capture the full blast of sun that lit them up beautifully, though a bit of sun does catch the trees at the back of the stand. Above this stand further up the hillside are trees of the red/orange persuasion, some of which are only beginning to change. Beautiful trees in a beautiful place!