Credit to Author: Canadian Immigrant| Date: Tue, 27 Sep 2022 02:18:19 +0000
Autumn in Canada is a magical time to be outdoors and soak in the riot of colours. Often referred to as a ‘shoulder season’ – a time between the peak periods of summer and winter – this is an excellent opportunity to go hiking with more views to yourself given the trails are less crowded and often cheaper if it means travel, even if do you have to pack a few more layers!
And you have a lot to choose from with 37 national parks and 10 national park reserves covering approximately 336,343 square kilometers of Canada’s lands.
Here are some recommendations of short trails you can explore across the country this autumn.
Banff National Park in Alberta, a part of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks World Heritage Site, offers lakes both turquoise and tranquil, stunning vistas and a large variety of wildlife. Choose from a wide variety of trails; but if you are a novice hiker, consider either the 2.5 km loop Fenland Trail or the 2.6 km Marsh Loop hikes for easy and pleasurable excursions.
Further west is the Kindersley-Sinclair Trail, a moderate hiking route stretching out over 17.5 km of rocky terrain in British Columbia’s Kootenay National Park. Not for the faint of heart, this day trip is in bear country, so caution is necessary, but the dazzling views of Mount Assiniboine make the challenges worth the risk for many.
Not to be outdone, Canada’s east coast has a multitude of gorgeous offerings ranging from ridiculously easy to seriously challenging. One of the easier routes to navigate is the beautiful Skyline Trail in Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton Highlands National Park. This 8.2 km loop hike takes up to three hours to complete and offers striking views of the Cabot Trail. Tread over fragile flora and be prepared to be wowed when spotting whales in the Gulf of the St. Lawrence below or bald eagles circling above.
We’d be completely remiss if we didn’t include the mighty fine vistas of the 16 km Gros Morne Mountain Trail situated in Newfoundland. This, the most challenging excursion of this roundup, is best suited for experienced hikers. The views are simply stunning as you take in images of the Ten Mile Pond gorge and Long Range Mountains. Bring lots of water with you!
Finally, for the many Canadians living in the Greater Toronto Area, Rouge National Urban Park offers several trails. The Mast Trail is an inspired two-hour trek that’s perhaps best suited for experienced hikers but available to all who like a challenge. The trail was previously used as a logging route as settlers logged white pines that were used for ship masts. The forest is filled with both wildflowers and wildlife which add diversity to the brilliant vistas. Make sure you bring a camera to capture the awesome colours of a brilliant autumn.
These suggestions are just a few of the literally thousands of trails available to people wanting to explore the outdoors.
For new Canadians who don’t know where to start, consider reaching out to organizations like Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS) or parkbus.ca, which offer outdoor experiences for recent immigrants and see if they can help get you started. The Canadian autumn is a marvellous opportunity to stretch your horizons and try something new. Indeed, our lush forests are filled with beautiful opportunities that are waiting to be discovered.
Visit the Institute for Canadian Citizenship’s website (inclusion.ca) and download their free app, Canoo, which offers newcomers free VIP access to over 1,400 cultural and outdoor experiences, including free access to all of the parks under the Parks Canada umbrella.
Looking for hiking tips to prepare for your outdoor adventure? Click here.