The Rattler

Bay of Islands (near CB), Newfoundland (Map)

Spring 2012.


I have a hard time accepting the arrival of winter & a hard time awaiting its departure. Every year I go on late November & late April conquests - since these times should mark times where you can adventure at will.

And so it was, late April, and just because it was a Saturday, I had made up my mind that I was going exploring. I donned the usual long johns, multiple sweaters, gloves & toque.

This is an area just west of Corner Brook which I've always wanted to explore to a greater degree. Beautiful waterfalls, topography & mountains entice you from the road as you drive along the 450.

I set out to reach The Rattler waterfall on this day.

I thought there was a trail which led to the waterfalls, but I quickly abandoned that path after I found myself too far east. (I would later learn that trail goes to a swimming hole & the trail I wanted was further up the road).

Not a problem though, as you can see from picture 1 & 2, the ground here is made up of bare rock with minimal trees and shrubs. It was easy going for the first portion.

Meanwhile, the snow increased & decreased by the minute. At points I could barely see the waterfalls, then I would be able to see islands out in the bay 5 minutes later.

As much as I voice my displeasure with winter, I actually enjoy days like this. Days where the ground is bare and there's only a small amount of snow - it adds to the adventure, without hindering your movement & soaking your feet, ankles and calves.

As I neared the waterfalls and resulting river, I found an increase in trees and shrubs. This eventually grew into full-on squeezing past shrubs and holding onto trees as I slid down inclines.

I eventually came to a considerable ridge with a view over the river and a window into what it would take to stand before the waterfall.

I decided to carefully move down the hill to the foot of the waterfall; after concluding that I might as well since I was all the way over here.

Unfortunately, I eventually came to an area with a wide river. The nearby forest was thick and rested upon angled land, which meant you couldn't climb beside the river. In addition, the river closely resembled a set of rapids, where the rocks were too high and separated to climb. Lastly, the river was too wide to cross.

So I clawed and pulled myself back up the steep incline & out of the river valley. I fought back through those trees, then shrubs, then onto the rocky landscape.

The snow picked up as I photographed a house foundation; before returning to my car & going on my way.


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