Trip planning

February 28, 2009

One of the first questions we had to answer in planning a trip to search for the Boundary Rock was “where shold we look?”.  Where do we think this rock might be?  After looking at the photographs at the NS Public Archives I looked at some old maps showing the county lines from the 1800’s to present.  There are many beautiful maps there but the problem I kept running into is that the landmarks would change over time.  Many older maps show a Dunbar’s Lake just Southeast of Sporting Lake, which is nowhere to be found on newer maps.  Dunbar’s Lake seems to have disappeared.  Some maps (like in the back of older versions of Albert Bigelow Payne’s “The Tent Dwellers) show the rock just North of Handsled Lake.  This would put it right around where the junction is today…  at Junction Lake.

Some say that from Junction Lake it’s just 400m or so upstream from a cove on the West bank of the Lake and it’s right there on the left.  There is some clarification needed, I think, as to what we’re calling the Boundary, or Junction Rock.  The one we’re looking for is the one with John McEwan’s name and others carved in the side of the rock.  It’s in a flat bog with easy access from a canoe.  There will be no question when we find this rock…

Although a part of me (and I’m certain I’m not alone) almost wishes that we find something that’s not the Boundary Rock.  I have a feeling that when we do find this rock, that there will be a sense of disappointment that will follow closely on the heels of the celebration of our discovery.

Still, I am going to look for it with every intention of finding it.  And if we find it, I will celebrate.  And if we don’t…  maybe the search itself was the thing we were looking for in the first place.


photo of the day

February 28, 2009

Halifax Citadel

Halifax Citadel - Paul Maybee

I took a walk yesterday around the Citadel Hill in Halifax and took this series of photos.  It was such a warm sunny day that it almost feels like spring will be here eventually.

photo of the day

February 27, 2009


Pigeons in Flight - Paul Maybee

There is a grain elevator near where I live which caught my attention one day when I was out walking.  I decided to take my camera in there.  There’s always been something really creepy and interesting about old places like this.  I ended up photographing the pigeons flying around the place and decided this was the best way to put them together.

photo of the day

February 26, 2009

Moon January 29, 2009

Moon January 12, 2009 - Paul Maybee

January moon

This is the moon on  January 12th, 2009.  I took this photo from my backyard (parking lot) in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

BR Research

February 26, 2009

Here’s what we know so far:

I spent several days at the Nova Scotia Public Archives looking at photos from the expedition in 1899 which pictures two unidentified fishermen and their guides standing on and around the rock.  Their notes indicate their route, which began on the West Branch of the Bear River, took them through Lake Joli, Fifth Lake, Moosehead Stream, and Moosehide Lake.  From there, chances are they ended up on the Shelburne River.

Looking closely at the photos, as well as looking at the other photos in the series from that trip, we have a good idea of the terrain surrounding the elusive Boundary Rock… or at least what it looked like a hunderd and ten years ago.

Boundary Rock 1899

Boundary Rock 1899

Photo Courtesy of Nova Scotia Archives and Records Management
Reference Number: N-2515/ Album 43, #2

I also read up on the county boundaries, because it is said to lie at the point where these four counties meet (Yarmouth, Shelburne, Queens and Digby).  There is some talk out there about the county lines moving  around 1875.  According to Charles Fergusson, an archivist for the province of Nova Scotia, the last survey of any of these lines was made in 1836 and the lines were confirmed in 1837.   (Source: The Boundaries of Nova Scotia and its Counties by Charles Bruce Fergusson, Provincial Archivist, Public Archives of Nova Scotia, 1966)

This would suggest that it’s still around Junction Lake, where the boundaries meet today, which would make it very easy to access.  So why have so few people found it?  I have spoken to people who have looked and found the survey pin, but no rock with the names of John McEwan and others carved into it’s side.

At the time of the expedition I’ve been researching, although the boundary lines themselves haven’t changed, little was known about the lakes and streams in the area.  The landmarks we have today weren’t known to the cartographers and guides in the late 18oo’s.  The mystery continues.

What’s this blog about?

February 25, 2009

I’m Paul Maybee, and this is my blog.  It’s going to be about several things, from music and photography to my latest adventures and things I’m just excited about.  Right now I’m excited about planning a trip to find Boundary Rock in the Tobeatic.  Click on the “Boundary Rock” tab to read more about it.