By the time I reached North Mountain, much of the cloud cover had disappeared, leaving blue sky behind over most of the North Aspy River Valley and South Mountain, though residual effects remain if one looks closely. It’s unfortunate that it wasn’t out earlier, which would have considerably livened up the previous photos from this day. There are five look-offs on the descent of North Mountain into Big Intervale¹, all offering fine views of various portions of the North Aspy River Valley and South Mountain on its far side. The photos on this page were taken from the second highest look-off.
¹ Both the The Nova Scotia Atlas and the topographical maps label this locality as “Big Intervale Cape North”, doubtless to distinguish it from the Big Intervale along the Margaree River, but the Park brochure map and the signage refer to it by the simpler “Big Intervale”, which I’ve used here.↩
Photo #1 shows the colours that were stippled across the side of South Mountain to the southwest of the look-off: the greens are clearly dominant on the hillsides, but a large number of orange/red trees give the hillside its freckled appearance. More colour appears in the valley below the look-off, where perhaps a third of the trees are mostly changed.
Photo #2 is a telephoto view of the trees in the lower left corner of photo #1, where there is a riot of colour, from greens through yellows to oranges and reds. The colours here are still definitely not at peak or even close, but they are indeed a-changin’.
Photo #3 looks at the valley carved by the Little Southwest Brook, which rises in lakes on the top of South Mountain, as it descends to join the North Aspy River. Again, a blush of red/orange lies over the predominating greens of the western (right) portion, but it is noticeably lighter to the east of the Brook.
Photo #4 looks further east than the previous photos, where South Mountain has a distinctly different colouration: although the red/orange tint is definitely there, it is more pastel than further west and more of a yellow-green cast appears in the colours. Magnification reveals that these trees have not lost their leaves; bare trees are hard to find.
Photo #5 looks back up the Cabot Trail from the look-off as it ascends towards the highest look-off and North Mountain. There are good colours on the upper slopes, but most of the trees (including the few evergreen interlopers that have infiltrated a mostly hardwood forest) are resolutely green or admitting of only a bit of yellow. Colours too appear in the brush descending into the MacGregor Brook valley at the lower left.
Taken from a bit past the look-off up the Cabot Trail, photo #6 shows one of those smaller maples, whose darker red hues indicate a recent, still incomplete, change; basking in the sun, it is an early and lovely omen of things yet to come.
Photo #7 was taken from the same location as photo #6, but looking at the slope above the cliffs on the opposite side of the Cabot Trail. The beautiful pure blue sky here is most welcome, as is the sun lighting up this steep hillside. Just about all of the fall hues are on offer in this scene, though, just as on the other side of the valley, greens still predominate. A lovely place on a (now) lovely day!