By Alastair Baird
Lookout Hill near Westmeath features a 360° view of the Laurentian Mountains in Quebec to the north and east, the Ottawa River and the Big Bend with rolling farmland and woods and the Algonquin Highlands to the west. Relax in the gazebo at the summit and take in the grandeur.
Shaw Woods forest trails and clifftop viewing spot over the Snake River just below Lake Dore on Bulger Road near Highway 41 is a great place to immerse yourself in nature. A truly unique opportunity to spot bald eagles who nest in the area.
Barron Canyon in Algonquin Park is a spectacular ravine with the Barron River running through the bottom of the canyon 100 meters below. From the parking lot, there is a wide hiking loop trail of 1.5 kilometers to the canyon rim and back. No fencing or safety measures are in place at this natural site so manage pets and children accordingly.
Petawawa Point Beach offers a view of the many pine-clad rocky islands, the Ottawa River, Allumette Island, and the Laurentian Mountains of Quebec. A great place for a day at the beach, too.
Deacon Escarpment Hiking Trail near the Village of Deacon and the Bonnechere River. A pleasant hiking trail through mixed forest to a clifftop viewing area overlooking Golden Lake and the Foymount Hills. Good spot for berry picking, too.
Eagle’s Nest Trail at Calabogie, just west of Calabogie Peaks Resort on County Road 508. A nice hike up a steady incline on a bush road to a clifftop overlook of the Eagle’s Nest ravine. Nearby, Manitou Trail explores another side of the mountain, starting from Calabogie Lake and Barrett Chute Road.
Pembroke Waterfront wooden boardwalk and paved trail runs from the Pembroke Marina to Riverside Park. Along the route, many logging and canoeing heritage displays are featured, and it offers a scenic view of the Ottawa River and Laurentian Mountains.