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Sable Island Information Gallery
Maintenance is a year round endeavor, and most daily operations are labour intensive. The marine island environment, is corrosive, this includes high winds, humidity, blowing sand, and salt spray. The humid marine environment, in conjunction with wet sand consumes steel, stainless steel, wood, and aluminum, along with helping to age rubber, plastics and glass. It has been said, and demonstrated that if you want something to last, you should use concrete.
Aircraft flights are scheduled approximately every two weeks, for the delivery of fresh food, essential parts, equipment, technicians, and rotating personel transportation. Return flights are fully utilized to carry personel, equipment for repair, recycling, and scrap metal. All aircraft operations are subject to fog, airframe icing, highwinds, beach flooding, and quicksand, which makes for unexpected delays of up to 2 weeks, and sometimes, longer in the summer. Beach and dune, errosion is a major concern, but Sable Island, will never disappear, with all high winds and major storms, dumping sand on top of vegatation. Sable Island, is continously in a state of change, being reshaped as the sea level rises. Everything that floats, in the North Atlantic, eventually washes ashore on the island, adding to the garbage dump of man made objects that are spread across the dunes, to be assimilated by time. On clear days when the North Atlantic Track volumes, are in the vicinity, hundreds, or thousands, of Jet Airliners and Military Transports, leave parallel white contrails across the blue sky from East to West, from horizon to horizon. Bicycles have been tried, on Sable Island, with very disappointing results. They are not recommended, as a mode of individual transportation. The sand conditions do not support the weight of the bicycle and rider. The lack of personal rental transportation freedom, is frustrating for most visitors, who desire to explore the whole island. Physical fitness, is essential, for any amount of exploring, and visitors should be aware of their limitations. Walrus herds historically were plentiful, up to the 1600's and the most common remains found on Sable Island beaches are the skulls and tusks. The walrus were hunted to extinction, for their oil, and ivory tusks. Sable Island, has claimed hundreds of ship wrecks, and thousands of unlucky mariners have lost their lives, either on or in the vicinity. Wreckers also made their living on the 'Graveyard of the Atlantic', stripping the dead, of their valuables.