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Posts Tagged ‘Cheticamp’

2011 Cape Breton Highlands 3 Peaks Challenge - July 16th

Eighteen teams believed and took the challenge on – hiking three mountains in one day at the Cape Breton Highlands 3 Peaks Challenge, July 16th.  They all made it in safely and the organizers, Hike the Highlands Festival Society, are extremely proud of their accomplishments. Thanks to all the teams for participating in this event.

Seventy-two hikers hiked Franey in the Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Roberts Mountain in Pleasant Bay, and Acadien in Cape Breton Highlands National Park, in weather that featured showers & drizzle throughout the day and great hiking temperatures – 10-15 degrees. Interesting to note the following day features hot, sunny weather with temperatures over 30 degrees.

One of my highlights of my day was on Acadien hiking trail going up Cheticamp River Valley and hearing the sound of a flowing stream along the hiking trail.

The day ended with a closing reception and door prizes. One of the questions asked for door prizes was “How many steps did you take while doing the Cape Breton Highlands 3 Peaks Challenge, answer is 42,968 steps. Thanks to our two partners – Cape Breton Highlands National Park and Les Amis du Plein Air for all their assistance with this event.

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Cap-Rouge, Cape Breton Highlands National Park

On International Trails Day, June 5th, 2010, Cape Breton Highlands National Park  and the Atlantic Canada Geocaching Association will host a Geocaching Day in Cheticamp. 

The newest geocache is located on one of the most pristine coastlines in the park and coordinates will be released at noon the day of the event.  Hint it is on the Fishing Cove Trail…. Last year, marked the launch of geocaching in Cape Breton Highlands National Park which now has an extensive offer consisting of 14 geocaches.

Here is the schedule of activites for Geocaching Day on the June 5th :
10:00 am. at Cheticamp Visitor centre,  meet and greet 
10:30 am.  Wilderness Safety presentation 
11:00 am.  Geocaching workshop 
12:00 pm. the coordinates of the new geocache will be released. 
4:00 pm. event wrap-up and prizes.   A special 125 anniversary coin of Parks Canada will be given to geocachers when they complete the event.

For more information visit the geocaching website – http://www.geocaching.com . You will need to register as a member its is free.

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Roberts Mountain, Pleasant Bay

The recent Explore March/April magazine talked about the old and new Canadian classics including Cycling the Cabot Trail, hiking West Coast Trail and much more.  So it was fitting to chat about the Hike the Highlands Festival Classics, Cape Breton Island.

To make my classics list – a hiking trail must be of significant physical  challenge with outstanding scenery. Here are my classics in no particular order :

1) Franey – I have hiked this trail more than 15o times, and each time it amazes me with the view at the top. A  7.4 kms return hike that provides superb views of the Clyburn Valley and of North Bay, Middlehead & South Bay of Ingonish.
2) Sugar Loaf  – only 4 kms return but you climb big time, but the scenery is outstanding at the top. Take your camera, incredible views. One of my favorite hikes.
3) Meat Cove Mountain – the first time I hiked this trail, it was on a beautiful sunny day and I took over 500 pictures overall. An eagle was flying on top of the mountain. This is a special place…4km return but a good workout. 
4) Roberts Mountain – a new hike in 2009. This is a tough climb but provides an amazing view of Pleasant Bay & Harbour. You will be glad you did this climb.
5) North River Big Falls – 18 km return hike that features Nova Scotia highest waterfalls at 105 feet  at the end of the hike.
6) Acadien – 8.4 km hike that provides great panormaic views of Cheticamp Harbour &  Island, and river canyon. A geocache is located on this trail.  
7) Money Point ( Gulch) – one tough hill to climb first but when you get to the Gulch you know why you did it. Amazing views…
8) Guided Wilderness Hike – This hikes makes you feel young again with jumping rocks, climbing and exploring waterfalls, old growth forest and a hiking cabin. An amazing adventure with great views not to be missed. Take your camera.
9) Fishing Cove – 12 km hike thru a hardwood forest & many forest canyons  to a small cove on the Atlantic Ocean. This hike is definitely a physical challenge but very rewarding with lots of great photo opportunities.
10) Cape St. Lawrence/Lowland Cove – 16 km hike return that provides outstanding coastal scenery and usually wild animals – horses and cows. You start and end in Meat Cove.

I would love to hear your comments on this list and your classics at Hike the Highlands Festival.

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Snowshoeing in the Cape Breton Highlands

Snowshoeing is a very popular winter sport in Nova Scotia this winter along with guided excursions.  Hiking Trails tend to look different in the winter with snow…thus the need for guides. Snowshoeing is a great aerobic sport to keep you active during the winter. Don’t forget to use trekking poles.

On Saturday, February 6  at 10:00 am.  Cape Breton Highlands National Park will be hosting a guided snowshoe hike along with its partners Les Amis du Plein Air, and Hike Nova Scotia on the new park trail – Le vieux chemin des Cap Rougiens.  Participants will meet at the Cheticamp Visitor Centre first.  Contact – 1-902-285-3009 or Marie Stradeski to register or reserve snowshoes.

On Tuesdays throughout the winter – North Highlands Nordic Ski Club in Cape North, Northern Cape Breton, will host their Happy Trails program from 10:00 am. – 12:00 noon. Instructional guided tours – ski, snowshoe or walk. rentals available in skies and snowshoes. Then gather in the ski room for tea.
Contact – Club Room # 902-383-2479 or e-mail nhn@xcski.ca

On Saturday, February 13th, Cape Breton Highlands National Park and Hike Nova Scotia will host a 4 km guided snowshoe excursion on Middle Head Trail at 10:00 am. Meet at the trailhead sign behind Keltic Lodge.
Contact – 1-902-285-3009 or Marie Stradeski to register or reserve snowshoes.

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Third Pool, Salmon Pool Hiking Trail

Third Pool, Salmon Pool Hiking Trail

There is something special about hiking along the river and hearing the water rush by you. Guide Daniel Aucoin ask us to relax and hear the sounds of the forest.  He also caught our attention when he would draw for prizes along the hike.. Mushrooms, toads, and cabins were just some of things hikers saw along the way including four pools. Salmon fishing is catch & release on Cheticamp River. 

Hikers from Beligum, Georgia, and BC joined us in today’s hike at Salmon Pool. Later in the evening, hikers were treated to a social at the Cheticamp Visitor Centre hosted by Les Amis du Plein Air. Hikers enjoyed Acadien and English Folklore music, refreshements and food.  The Nature bookstore was open and hikers in the festival received a 10% discount off all items.  

 Day 7  of the festival features hikes at  Skyline, Fishing Cove and Le Chemin du Buttereau, all located in the Cape Breton Highlands National Park. In the evening, there will be a presentation on  “Trekking in Central and South America – Costa Rica and Peru. at 7:00 pm. by Marie Stradeski .  This presentation will take place at the festival headquarters, conference room at Glenghorm Beach Resort, Ingonish. It plans to be another special day in the Cape Breton Highlands for hiking  with sunny conditions and a high of 16 degrees.  

Day 8, (Sept. 18th) of the festival features hikes on Franey,  Freshwater lake & -Look-off and Smokey Towers. The last workshop of the festival – Outdoor Nature Photography with Wally Hayes takes place on Friday, Sept. 18th.  Meet at Cape Smokey Provincial Park parking lot at 1:30 pm.  Day 8 Evening presentation – “Hiking in Europe” with Lori Burke at 7pm. at Conference room, Glenghorm Beach Resort, Ingonish  plans to attract a good crowd.

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Wow… what an incredible 10 days of hiking. Great weather, an amazing camaradie & friendship among the hikers, interesting & challenging trails, and informative evening activities made the 5th Annual Hike the Highlands festival memorable. Thanks to you, our festival matched last year’s numbers in registration in a tough year but also increase by over 200 people, hiking more trails and staying longer.  You have given us the confidence to continue to be better and excel in next year’s festival.  Our team has enjoyed meeting all of you and developing lasting friendships.

I would also like like to thank our team – our organizing committee, the registration volunteers, guides & sweeps, evening presentors,  partners, sponsors and our friend Wally Hayes, NS Tourism great photographer, for your important contributions in making the 5th Annual Hike the Highlands festival successful.  An amazing team that can be very proud of its work.

Hikers in this year festival came from six provinces – Newfoundland & Labrador,  PEI,  New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Quebec, Ontario,  US ( Two states), and Scotland. A great bunch of people that I along with fellow hikers enjoyed meeting and sharing stories and experiences with during the ten days of the festival. Our veteran guide, Lisa Dixon said in today’s hike, I never have meet a hiker I didn’t like. 

Thanks again to all of you for making the 5th Annual Hike the Highlands Festival special.  Here are just a few of my favorite pictures pics to remember the 2008 Hike the Highlands Festival.

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