Photo #1 looks across the Mabou River (seen most clearly at the left, though it spans the entire photo) at the vast bulk of Mabou Mountain, whose upper slopes are now showing mostly bare trees everywhere the evergreens have not colonized. Northeast Mabou starts at the left of the photo a bit outside its scope and runs at the base of the Cape Mabou Highlands and on to Hawleys Hill on the far side of Mabou Mountain. The blue building at the base of Mabou Mountain left of centre, a bit difficult to pick out in this compressed version, is the Mabou Athletic Centre where hockey games and a large farmers’ market are regular draws. St Marys is at the right of the photo and the village lies at the far right, climbing up the side of Mabou Mountain.
Photo #2 looks to the right of photo #1, with Big Cove and the Southwest Mabou River down below. The valley in which Mabou sits is lined with unnamed highlands in the background across the entire width of this photo. Those at the left I call the “Smithville Hills” because they rise to the east of the Smithville Road; the now abandoned locality of Melrose Hill and the nearly abandoned locality of Mount Young are located on the summit of the ridge. The unnamed prominence that rises at the far right is north of Brook Village and is not connected to the Mount Young/Melrose Hill ridge. The silos at the far right mark the farm at Rankinville, with Hillsborough beyond on the far side of the Mabou River, also known there as the Mull River. At this distance and in this light, it’s very hard to make out the state of the fall colours, but I can attest that they were well past peak at this point, though patches of colour did remain at various localized spots.
Photo #3, taken from further south, looks across the foothills of the Mabou Ridge to the ridge north of Brook Village, which spans the central part of the photo, and a ridge which lies beyond it to the east. The nearer silos are along the Cèilidh Trail (Highway 19), which can be seen in the middle ground at the right; those further on are in Rankinville. The dot of white about a third of the way in from the right against the ridge is a house at the top of Smiths Lane in Hillsborough, from which there are grand views looking towards the Gulf. At the far right, the slope of Mabou Ridge (Southwest Ridge) can be seen.
Photo #4 looks to the right of photo #3 across to the summit of Mabou Ridge (Southwest Ridge). The Southwest Ridge Road passes in front of the house seen just below the summit about a quarter of the way in from the right. Although the ridge itself has mostly bare trees, some colour, yellows and greens, remains in the foothills.
Photo #5 looks even further to the right at Mabou Ridge at the left and Alpine Ridge at the centre and right. These slopes again are mostly bare trees, though a bit of colour remains at scattered locations lower down. Below the ridge, the productive fields of the farms along the Cèilidh Trail can be seen. The Southwest Mabou River flows through valley in the foreground.
Photo #6 looks closer at hand than the previous photos, catching a glimpse at the left of the Southwest Mabou River and the valley through which it flows. Some lovely lime-coloured leaves and a few orangish ones can be seen here. The Celtic Shores Coastal Trail follows along the River, providing lovely views of the river and its valley on its way to Southwest Mabou.
Photo #7 shows a fair amount of colour, yellow and orange, along the Southwest Mabou River (not visible here, being blocked by trees) in the foreground. The Creignish Hills, the source of the Southwest Mabou River, rise beyond Alpine Ridge at the upper centre.
Photo #8 is one final view from Hunters Road; taken with “Big Bertha”, it brings the distant Creignish Hills and the intervening waves of ridges in the backcountry into closer focus. In any season, Mabou is certainly one of the most beautiful areas on the island, offering a great variety of different terrain, from the Cape Mabou Highlands and a plethora of surrounding hills with magnificent views to bucolic valleys and riverine trails.