Local News

Restoration Begins on Back Cove Base Camp

Early on October 22, the IATNL's Arne Helgeland, Kevin Noseworthy and Paul Wylezol set off in boat from Cox's Cove in Middle Arm, Bay of Islands for Back Cove in North Arm.

North Arm Hills - Oct 2014, IMG_3674esView of Cox's Cove from Middle Arm (click on photo to make larger)

With them were new windows, assorted lumber and miscellaneous building supplies needed to start restoration of a 50+ year old fishing house now hiking camp at the base of the North Arm Hills, a location central to the planned Cabox Global Geopark spanning the four Bay of Islands Ophiolites from Lewis Hills to Tablelands.

They were onboard True North Charter & Tours' Pilgrim, operated by skipper Tony Oxford and First Mate Andrew Oxford.

The ride took approximately 45 minutes

and ended when the Pilgrim entered tiny but sheltered Back Cove, on the eastern side of Stowbridge's Point.

After ferrying the construction materials onshore via a small Bay of Islands dory,

the trio wasted little time getting to work cleaning up outside around the two storey house

cleaning and painting the downstairs interior

and installing two downstairs windows.

They finished just in time for an evening walk to Stowbridges Beach, only 5 minutes over the hill to the west

North Arm Hills - Oct 2014, IMG_3691e2sView of Stowbridges Beach (click on photo to make larger)

where they had a few "diet colas" and watched the sun set between Lark Harbour Head and Guernsey Island (aka Weeboll).

Kevin Noseworthy (left) and Arne Helgeland at Stowbridges Beach

The sun continued shining throughout Day Two, allowing more outside work and a pleasant autumn hike around the surrounding ophiolite landscape.

North Arm Hills - Oct 2014, IMG_3703esView of James Cook's Stone Brook, with Back Cove and the Bay of Islands in background (click on photo to make larger)

The 2,000ft+ (610m+) North Arm Hills, like their better known Tablelands sibling, are composed mostly of the earth's mantle and are ultramafic peridotite that oxidizes and turns a rust-colored orange.

At James Cook's Stone Brook they are bisected by a deep and steep meandering valley characterized by serpentine outcroppings and peridotite scree fields.

North Arm Hills - Oct 2014, IMG_3726e3sView of James Cook's Stone Brook bisecting the North Arm Hills (click on photo to make larger)

The top of the hills are almost entirely barren and devoid of plant life, and are a pleasant grade that makes for easy walking.

North Arm Hills - Oct 2014, IMG_3733e2sView across the top of the North Arm Hills (click on photo to make larger)

From Back Cove, it is a 2-day walk to either cross the mountains to the southeast end of Gros Morne National Park's Trout River Pond (via the Overfalls Trail) or to loop around James Cook's Stone Brook.

But that was more time than Arne, Kevin and Paul had on this October trip. After two nice days of work and play, they packed up their bags just in time, as the Pilgrim rounded Stowbridges Head.

After a short dory ride and one glance back at North Arm Hill

they headed off into the sunset

looking forward to their return to Back Cove Base Camp and James Cook's Stone Brook.

(left to right) IATNL's Arne Helgeland, True North's Tony and Andrew Oxford, and IATNL's Kevin Noseworthy

IAT/IATNL Chairperson Paul Wylezol