Cruising Into North Arm, Bay of Islands
On July 20 IAT President Paul Wylezol joined a charter cruise of the North Arm of the Bay of Islands to appraise the outdoor adventure potential of the North Arm and Hills. The boat tour was arranged by the Humber Economic Development Board and skippered by Cox's Cove Mayor Tony Oxford, an enthusiastic promoter of the outer Bay of Islands. Also on tour were representatives from HEDB (Humber Economic Development Board), HRLE (Provincial Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment), ACOA (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency), INTRD (Provincial Department of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development), Parks Canada, and local community councils.
(L-R) HEDB Executive Director Connie Taylor and ACOA Development Officer Sonya Lane
The two-hour evening boat ride departed from the community of Cox's Cove at the entrance to Middle Arm, Bay of Islands, with a thick fog enshrouding the nearby mountains and headlands.
Along the way, the group passed small summer fishing stations, some of which were once remote outports, resettled in the early to mid twenth century to take advantage of modern conveniences and necessary services.
The coastline was also dotted with numerous small waterfalls cascading out of the fog, down over lush green hills or gray rocky cliffs
as well as the occasional moose and a shy black bear.
While approaching North Arm, the fog began to lift and the sun broke through
revealing a towering golden mount of the North Arm Hills, peridotite aglow in the late evening sun.
The return to port was characterized by brooding clouds and piercing sun across a wide palette of sea, land and sky
... and the contented look of a proud town mayor on a tour of his own backyard!
The North Arm of the Bay of Islands and its grand eponymous Hills comprise a remote and rugged maritime landscape that is indeed a unique and special place.
We now have our work cut out for us: to develop and promote this area as an outdoor adventure playground for the benefit of locals and tourists alike, while at the same time protecting the rare and vulnerable wilderness and its awe-inspiring grandeur.