Thursday, 7 July 2011

Sampling the hikes in the Coast of Bays region of Newfoundland

by Keith and Heather Nicol

Walking along the Jersey Point Trail
Watching the fog roll in on the Deadman's Cove Trail
We recently had a chance to visit the excellent Conne River powwow over the July 1 long weekend in the Coast of Bays region of Newfoundland (see blog post for Monday, July 4, 2011).  This area is accessed by highway 360 which is near Grand Falls in Central Newfoundland. We had never been to this part of the province before so we were keen to see as much as we could in the couple of days that we had available. Since we like to explore on foot we also sampled many of the short hiking trails that the area has to offer. So what follows are some that we found easy to find and that are well marked. In Milltown we walked the Jersey Point Trail which is about 1 km (1 way). Much of it is along the ocean so is a pleasant walk and you can also check out the Piercey Heritage house enroute. We also walked the short 500 meter Southeast Brook Trail which traverses a portion of that scenic stream. In Conne River we really enjoyed their "medicine trail" which I we discussed more fully in the July 4 blog post. As well you can hike up to Clem Joe's Lookout which branches off of this trail at the first small building and it climbs 70 meters to a fine viewpoint. This trail is just 500 meters long (1 way) but the last portion is quite steep. Lastly we walked several very nice trails in Harbour Breton where we played in and out with the fog. The Rocky Point Lighthouse trail is about 400 meters long (1 way) if you take the beach route (beware at high tide since this route will mean getting your feet wet-but there is another entrance point near a cemetery that is less   scenic-since it is not along the water- but you won't have to worry about wet feet). We also really enjoyed the Gun Hill hike which provided great views of the entire area. This hike is short -just 650 meters (1 way) but is has a ton of stairs to climb up. Think of it as an outdoor "stairmaster". We also hiked about a portion of the Deadman's Cove trail which looked to be a great trail but part way along the fog rolled in and we so we decided to return to the car. This trail has fine views of some offshore islands and long beaches and would be a stellar trail in the sunshine. If readers have other suggestions of good trails in this area place a note in the comments section of this blogpost. 

The View from the Gun Hill Trail in Harbour Breton

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