Isaacs Harbour (Goldboro to Red Head) Paddle Route

From the TC 104, take exit 35 traveling Route 316 toward St. Andrews and Goldboro. Passing through the communities of Country Harbour and Stormont, you will arrive at the Isaacs Harbour intersection. At this point make a sharp left turn and travel to the Goldboro Interpretive Center where you will find a great spot to launch beside the wharf.

Special Features:

The communities of Isaacs Harbour and Goldboro face one another across a deep water harbour that once was the major centre for shipping in Guysborough County. Goldboro was once a thriving mining community, and many abandoned mines are scattered throughout. In recent years, Goldboro has seen the revival of economic growth with the completion of the Sable Offshore Energy Project, bringing ashore the first sample of natural gas in Atlantic Canada in 1999. The Goldboro Interpretive Centre provides excellent displays of artifacts from the two communities, and pays special tribute to the area’s industrial past and present. This paddle route incorporates the peninsula known as Red Head, that was used by early Black Loyalists as a burial ground. This early cemetery underwent archaeological excavation and forensic assessment during the summer of 2001, due to the exposure and loss of graves from the eroding effects of the Atlantic tides.

Length: 13 km return
Time: 5 Hours
Type: Tidal, saltwater, harbour
Facilities: Interpretive centre, picnic, tables, garbage cans, toilets, payphone
Nearby: Goldboro, Stormont
Rating: Intermediate


Visit Guysborough: Isaac's HarbourLaunching from the Goldboro Interpretive Centre, paddle toward the mouth of the harbour. Staying close to the shoreline, you will view old derelict buildings that once housed shops and factories , and remain as reminders of the thriving industrial past of this area. Continuing on you will pass Hurricane Island, adjacent to which, is a small cove; the perfect place to rest or swim. It is important to check tide times as there is an exposed bar of land that appears between this island and the mainland at low tide. Beyond Hurricane Island you will approach Red Head where the effects of the pounding Atlantic Ocean can be marveled from the water’s edge. On the return trip, you will paddle across the open water to the community of Isaacs Harbour, where the shore is lined with old abutments that once supported wharves bustling with activity. At the harbour mouth is the Isaacs Harbour lighthouse that was established in 1874. Rounding a cove at the base of the harbour, return toward the interpretive centre, which marks the end of this paddle route. Please note that in times of inclement weather, the water can be rough and caution should be exercised.

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