If you want to see what a naval fort really looked like 200 years ago and have a bit of an imagination this is a great place. It's virtually untouched since it was abandoned, and has been subject to the whims of nature for 150 years, but the important stuff remains. A car or cab can get you near, or you can climb up from the beach below - though it's a bit tricky. Bring bug spray, water, camera. There's a lot here. The ruins of the barracks, powder house, and out buildings are still standing (sort of), and many of the old 24 pound cannons are still in place. You can get an idea of what these old forts built on important islands all over the world were really like more so than on Shirley Heights or the tourist trap Nelson Dockyards. No one runs this place; it's just there. No facilities of any sort, no fees, no information provided. The fort was built to protect St. John's harbor; any ship going in had to go right past it. Those cannons had a range of a mile plus, took a crew of 8 to operate, and used 8 pounds of black powder for every shot (one every 2 minutes for a good crew), hence the powder house to keep the powder bags out of the elements and away from danger. People always want to know how many ships these old naval forts around the world sank. Answer: hardly any since no captain was stupid enough to try to sail past. Forts like this were a deterrent. Up on a hill like this, a ship below could not fire back. There is a great beach down below, and a good fairly priced restaurant nearby. A real gem for history buffs.
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