Local Motion - New Brunswick

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June 29, 2010

Father's Day Hike in Fundy Park

 Father's Day hike

This Father's Day my brother, his fiancee, and I went hiking with our dad in Fundy National Park. The sunny day faded as fog greeted us at the park boundary. The Moosehorn - Laverty Falls Trail is a favourite of my dad's so we headed there and found a nearly empty parking lot. A surprise, considering this is one of the Park's most popular trails and it was Father's Day. We dressed for the damp weather but within 15 minutes the temperature began rising and throughout the hike it steadily grew warmer.

We decided to hike into Laverty Falls, then follow the trail downriver past the pools, and return to the parking lot on the Moosehorn Trail. Hiking the trail in this direction was a first for me, usually I'd wanted to save Laverty fall for the end. But from now on I'll always walk to Laverty first then head down river.

The trail to Laverty Fall is wide and rutted but if you can take your eyes off the ground you'll see a wonderful example of a real Acadian forest. Yellow birch, gnarled with age, thrust up like great outstretched hands - fingers the size of normal trees. If you look through the open forest you'll see the dark, scaly bark of red spruce that shoot like arrows through the canopy. There's even a big hollow tree you can stand inside and have your picture taken.

We paused at Laverty Falls, then proceeded down river. I love this portion of the trail as it follows the river you can see how the banks are built of deposited gravel and cobble - at times the river cuts into the bank exposing cobble several feet deep. As the river valley widens it takes on a mountainous feel - alders and wildflowers grow in the flood plain along side the occasional boulder.

This deep pool was so good for swimming. 

All of a sudden geology changes drastically and the river is squeezed through a channel of solid rock - leaving a bubbling wake to settle in a deep clear pool. We stopped here for lunch and with perfect timing the sun started to burn a little hotter. That was enough to convince us to go for a swim. We braced ourselves for icy water but it was surprisingly warm - I was able to stay in comfortably for 15 minutes. We probed around the pool looking at giant carved stones and diving into deep clear water.

Bracing for the plunge but it turned out to be quite warm.

Even on an overcast day, the sun powered through the clouds reaching the rock and giving it heat to radiate back. Perfect for lazing about, eating, and drying off. We hiked back up to the parking lot on the Moosehorn Trail passing again through a beautiful lush forest. Along the way I wondered if the Park would consider connecting this trail to the Forks Trail just a little farther down the river. It would make a great loop, plus it would allow people to hike from Laverty Falls, and the Dobson Trail, for the entire length of the Upper Salmon River to Alma.

We finished the day off with a stop at Alma's new cafe, the Octupus's Garden where we got hot drinks, pastry, and sat on the patio. An excellent way to top off the day. I'm so glad Alma has a good cafe once again.

Father's Day is an excellent excuse to get outside. I hope you did something special with your dad.

graham waugh local motion new brunswick saint john hiking moncton hiking fredericton hiking fundy national park alma bay of fundy upper salmon river moosehorn laverty falls swimming rivers graham waugh hiking new brunswick


Wandering Whalen said...

Graham I love the hike down Broad River and have swam many times in that same pool. Thanks for the read.

Anonymous said...

What a great day!!