Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Bonavista Bay - Beothuk ghosts at "The Beaches"

After we finished checking out the ancient Beothuk stone quarry we made our way back down the 100 meter hill to the four waiting colleagues who didn't join us on the hill.  We crossed over to Broad and Card Islands on the sky reflected waters.

A narrow channel passes between Broad and Card Islands.  The kayaks glided effortlessly over the oliy calm waters.

There were a few jellyfish around.

I was enjoying the day and was a little ahead of the gang as I emerged from the channel, passed Coal Island to starboard, made a sharp turn to port, passed between Broad and Martin Islands before reaching "The Beaches".

The Beaches is one of the largest settlements of the Aboriginal Beothuk Indians in the province.  Archaeological work at the site determined there were at least nineteen house pits on the site though these tent poles weren't one of them.

There was plenty of room for our seven tents and two hammocks but at the time the Beothuk lived there the site was 30,000 sq meters larger.  Erosion by the rising sea levels is slowly eating away the land.

As we landed at The Beaches a frontal system passed through whipping the sea into peaks and the water danced.  There was a little concern for how fast the weather deteriorated but the squall passed quickly and calm descended again.

The Beaches site is on a bar between two islands that are cut off during high tide.  This was the view northeast after the calm returned.  An absolutely spellbinding view.

Part of the new occupation at The Beaches.  Some of us scurried to the protection of the trees to set up tents when the squall arrived.

We gathered some wood to start a communal BBQ.  The popular choice of the carnivores were steaks but there were pork chops and chicken burgers also, all cooked on Hazen's grill.  By suppertime the water was dropping as the bar emerged from the waters.

After supper it was time to relax with an assortment of medicinal compounds.

Twilight settled over the scene.  The darker it got, the more stars came out.  First the recognizable Big Dipper emerged and then others such  Sagittarius, Bootes and Cassiopeia.  The odd satellite whizzed by and Shane saw one fireball meteor.

Shane determined Polaris, the north star, did in fact point north.

There's something enthralling about a fire it surely must be burned into our DNA for one can't help but gaze into it.  We let the fire burn down before hitting the tents for the night after an excellent first day in Bonavista Bay.

Here are the breadcrumbs from our journey from Burnside, through the islands an arrival at The Beaches.

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