There are very few places in Cape Breton, which intrigue me, that I have not visited. Cape Clear was one of them. BUT NOT ANYMORE.
Cape Clear is a large outcrop of white stone, deep in the Western Highlands of Cape Breton, overlooking the Margaree. It is well known to locals, difficult to find, but only a 5 minute walk from your car, once you arrive.
So, now that you know about it, let me get you there…
To get there, you must travel the web of roads which crisscross Cape Breton’s Highlands. These roads were originally built during the construction of Wreck Cove hydro plant and have been multiplied and maintained do to extensive logging over the years. The main entrance to this labyrinth is through From Wreck Cove itself, on the West side, just before Cape Smokey. This being said, the easiest to directions to Cape Clear, and on of the shortest routes is from Middle River, shortly after the the turnoff to Cheticamp along the Trans Canada.
The road you are looking for is Highland Rd. This country, dirt road is your main thoroughfare into the highlands and ultimately to Cape Clear.
Along the way, you will see directional signs for familiar places like Margaree, Cheticamp, and the one you want to follow, Cape Clear. The road to Cape Clear is right off the Highland Rd, so keep your eyes open for the sign, take the turn and then keep going until you reach the end.
Just when you think you are lost and should turn back, keep going. I know, this is scary advise but it is all I can tell you.
When you reach the end of the road, you are a mere 5 minute walk to Cape Clear, even closer if you have an SUV or truck. Believe me, you will know when you get there.
Standing in the edge of the gorge, you will see rolling highlands as far as the eye can see in every direction. Not a man add structure in sight, here, you get a true sense of just how just vast there parts of Cape Breton are.
Over 1200ft below, you will see the waters of the Margaree River. These waters lead to Margaree Forks (another entry point to Cape Clear, via Fielding Rd.) and then to the Gulf of St Laurence.
Once here, you can set yourself upon a rock, find your place in the world, and take it all in. As an avid hiker, I felt guilty I could witness such beauty with so little work.