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  • Gary Crallé

Cape Sable Lighthouse as time goes by

Updated: Aug 24, 2022

From the middle of a 1,500-year-old drowned forest at Hawk Beach there’s a good long-distance view of Cape Sable lighthouse on a clear day…or a misty one when I was there. In spring and fall this is a prime birding beach.

The lighthouse is Nova Scotia’s southernmost sentinel at the mainland tippety tip of the province. It’s also the tallest of all 278 Nova Scotia lighthouses at 30.8 meters / 101 feet, inching out Cape Forchu by .8 meters / 2.6 feet.

Cape Sable lighthouse is offshore, but unlike wadeable Sandy Point, can only be reached by boat. Public visitation by dories is organized once annually, and it's coming up this month (August). At our invitation the day before when exploring Baccarro Point, local poet Edward Nickerson (with binoculars) joined us for a beach walk.

An old forest is gone and the beach recedes as nature moves on, littering the fine white sand that grips like clay when wet. Among the scattered dead roots of trees, I spotted a rock that resembled a coelacanth ancient fish.

Seal Island Light Museum was our next destination that day, just 21 minutes away as the car drives. It’s one component of a walkable 4-part mini museum complex along the river in Barrington. The museum is a 5-story replica of the 60-foot Barrington lighthouse still on active duty. I took note of a couple of fascinating provincial marine details while musing through the displays. I’ve included them here as hi res images.

Photos and text

© Gary Crallé 2022

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