Tuesday, May 9, 2017

A hobble in Bull Arm

Sometime on May 8th the Hebron oilfield production platform, a gravity base structure (GBS), was tentatively scheduled to be towed out of the construction site in Bull Arm.  Seven tugboats were contracted to do the tow out but nine of us decided we had better attend in case they need more towing power.

The plan was to leave from Chance Cove and camp at Masters Head Beach and monitor the situation as to when the tow-out would proceed.  On a bright sunny but cool Sunday morning Brian, Cathy, Clyde, Gary, Hazen, Ron, Roy, Terry and I loaded our kayaks on the slipway in Chance Cove.

Loaded down with all the camping essentials we left Chance Cove and ...

... headed northwest along the shore.

The shoreline along here is punctuated by sea stacks of the Bull Arm Formation comprised mainly of andesitic volcanic flows.  That is to say, the same composition of the rocks of the Andes Mountains in South America.

Its one of the most picturesque shorelines on the Avalon Peninsula which is hard not to get ...

... enough of.

Near Rantem Harbour we paddle past the last of the sea stacks where a bit of mist hung in the air.  We crossed directly over bypassing the harbour and landed on the opposite shore where we examined ...

... the lone bergy bit in the area.  This shot is for Brian, Hazen and Terry who made the longer crossing to ...

... the beach just inside of Masters Head.  They were soon joined by the rest of us and we all set up camp.

Its not only an army that marches on its stomach.  We had to fuel up too for the tow we thought we might have to assist with *lol*.

We all pitched in to collect firewood for the evenings campfire which we knew we'd need as temperatures were expected to drop to near 0C.  After we had a good pile of wood stacked up Brian, Cathy, Gary and I followed the start of a moose path up through the trees to climb up to the top of the Head.

Its was a cool breeze (guessing 5C) but the exertion of the climb had us plenty warm.  We had a nice view of Trinity Bay from our vantage point some 50 meters above the water.  I couldn't resist throwing a few rocks over and watch them kerplunk into the water below.

After ten minutes or so we made our descent picking our way through a mass of dead trees and windfalls.

Just after 7:30 fire chief Terry decided it was time to get the fire going.  It was still an hour and a half from darkness but a welcome warmth as the sun began to set loosing the heat it provided.

As night drew on and the cold set in, we began to stand closer to the flames.  Warmed by the fire people started to drift away to the tents steeled against the cold that was expected to hit near freezing.

As it turned out, the tow out was cancelled due to ice conditions in the tow path.  We would not be needed after all!!!  Nevertheless, the next day we planned to paddle down Bull Arm to the construction site at Msquito Cove where the gravity base structure bobbed in the water waiting patiently for the move.  More on that later.


  1. Thanks Tony for getting the pix up so fast! Looking fwd to part 2 :)
    Maybe they will call us out later the week to help tow! :)
    Thanks to all the guys for the awesome time! Cathy