The Cape Shore is like no other for the bird enthusiast, adventure tourist, casual hiker, day-tripper or weekend holiday-goer. Unspoiled nature and rare interactions with birds, wildlife and the sea, don’t occur just anywhere. Although nearby to Placentia, French capital of Newfoundland until 1713 and important English town afterwards, the Cape Shore was largely uninhabited until the late 18th and early 19th centuries. At this time the
Placentia merchants, Saunders and Sweetman, began bringing settlers there from the area around Waterford, Ireland. The river valleys of the Cape Shore are relatively fertile areas suitable for many types of small-scale farming, a rarity in Newfoundland. Communities like St. Bride’s and Angels Cove were originally settled as farming communities, not fishing communities, like most settlements in Newfoundland. To this day, commercial sheep, dairy, and vegetable farms are in operation on the Cape Shore
The Cape Shore is adjacent to what were some of the richest fishing grounds in the world, as exhibited in the old Newfoundland saying Cape St. Mary’s pays for all (meaning, losses incurred during a poor fishing year could be recouped by a quick fishing trip to Cape St. Mary’s). By the latter part of the 19th century, fishing was the main occupation, and continues to be important today, despite the fishing industry’s woes in the past 30 years (including the devastating Atlantic cod moratorium).
The communities of the Cape Shore include:
Little Barasway (‘Barasway’ is a Newfoundland English word meaning barachois)
Big Barasway or Great Barasway
Hiking Trails and Community Walks
While an official trail system in the area is yet to be developed, the region has numerous walking trails, beach walks and community passageways through the Cape Shore. When you visit, be sure to explore these hidden gems!