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Report 1901: A Month on the Rock

By Eleanor from UK, Fall 2010

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Page 14 of 31: St Anthony and Surrounding Area

photo by Michael

Goose Cove

St. Anthony was originally a French summer fishing settlement but by the mid 1800s it was lived in all year. Fishing is still important and there is a large, well sheltered harbour catching mainly crab and shrimp. We watched men mending nets by the harbour.

There is a short Harbour Nature Trail along the waterfront.

We drove to Fishing Point for splendid views of the sea and spray. Hurricane Earl had gone through the previous night and the wind was still very strong, so there were plenty of white horses and spray. There was low cloud and it was very dull with the odd patch of sunshine moving across the hillside opposite and catching St Anthony Bight.

We walked along the boardwalk of the Iceberg Alley Walk but decided the wind was too strong and it might be dangerous to go further. This was a shame as there were several way marked trails and there looked to be some good walking around the headland.

During the morning the rain eased and the clouds began to break. Rather than spend more time in St Anthony we decided to drive down to Goose Cove. It was a nice drive across moorland with low trees and lots of bare rock. Again there were small gardens along the side of the road protected by wooden fences and big piles of stacked wood.

Goose Cove is a delightful small place with houses spread out along the bay. There was no shop and the school had shut. The church shares a priest. There were some very old wooden wharves with wooden buildings on them which were gradually falling to pieces. Judging by the number of crab pots around there is still some crab fishing.

By now it was turning into a glorious day, despite the wind. We parked at the end of the road and did the new boardwalk (Pulmy Cove Trail) to a viewpoint at the tip of the peninsula and then circled back along the headland with waves crashing against the rocks below. It was a very attractive rocky coastline of low cliffs with inlets and small bays with scattered houses in some of them. This was a delightful place and well worth while visiting.

We then drove up the coast the other way from St Anthony to Great Brehat, a small fishing settlement of scattered houses separated by a big headland. At the end of the road there were steps and a boardwalk to Flat Head. This gave good views back over the settlement and rocky coastline of bare rocks with low matt vegetation, mainly bakeapple and crowberry. It was still very windy with a good sea running. There was no other settlement visible along the coast - it was too exposed.

Then onto St. Carols, a small bay with a few houses and remains of a wooden harbour which had seen better days. The very short John Patey Trail was steps and boardwalk to the top of the cliffs with views back to St. Carols and along the coastline. Another nice little walk.

We dropped down into St. Anthony Bight, the straggling settlement we had seen earlier in the day from Fishing Point. There were no obvious attractions and it wasnít worth the detour.

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