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Kayaking - Lac Philippe


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Kayaking is such an enjoyable sport. Thanks to the abundance of lakes and rivers in the Ottawa-Gatineau region, there is no shortage of places to visit and discover. Kayaking is also an easy sport to get into and is less difficult than it may appear to be. What does help is lakes that are free of powered boats. One such place is Lac Philippe in Gatineau Park.

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Located about 35 minutes from downtown Ottawa and Gatineau, Lac Philippe is a large lake, featuring two beaches, pedal boat, kayak and canoe rentals, and camp grounds. If you are coming with your own kayaks or wish to rent, the best place to park is by following the signs for the boat launch, shortly after passing the first beach. From here, you are able to park quite close to the water and the launching point is not busy or crowded.

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Immediately you can see the vastness of the lake, that seems to extend indefinitely. On this visit we decided to head to the left, in the direction of the Breton Beach.

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Passing a well built beaver lodge.

The lake has several points for you to stop and enjoy the nature. A small island is also present in the lake, definitely an inviting location to visit, just be sure to bring some shoes.

With a lake this pristine and enjoyable, it is extremely difficult to stop kayaking and call it a day. Yet the day does eventually end and it becomes time to head back to shore.

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Building up some speed for a big finish onto the beach.

Before heading home, you should also visit the Lusk Caves and trail, another great adventure and a nice hike that you can enjoy. Visit our other post here to learn more.

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    • By Shane
      It had been 3 years since we last explored these trails. With another hot and summery day upon us, it was time to stay cool by hitting the trails during the heat wave. It's truly amazing how nature and the trees can help regulate the heat. You really do not feel as hot when under the tree canopy.
      Arriving shortly after 11am (as the Gatineau Parkway roads are closed till 11 for the Sunday Bikedays), we parked at the lot by the Waterfall Trail. A short little slope down and to the left we find the tunnel, which passes under the parkway. After emerging on the other side, a fairly short hike brings us right to the Bridal Veil Falls. Heading back up and now to to the Lauriault Trail, the long trek begins. The terrain is relatively easy to cross, although there are some mild to hills along the way to go up and over.


      Eventually you arrive at a clearing and lookout point, perfect to see the surrounding region from up above.


      Heading back into the forest, the path takes us up one more hill and then back down some stairs into the Lauriault Parking lot. Here the trail gets a bit tricky if you aren't familiar with it (as it isn't marked where to go next). In actuality, you need to immediately cross the parkway road to the other side and the path resumes there. If you do not cross, you will find other paths that arrive at a small lake and picnic areas, very pretty, but with no real exit as they just loop back into the parking.


      After crossing the road, the trail continues, following the direction of the signpost towards the Waterfall Trail and Parking.
      This final stretch of the trail is relatively easy, with just a few hills, and before you know it (well it was longer than that), you arrive near the tunnel and the parking once again.
      A great trail to discover with a few sights to see along the way.
      Happy hiking!
      Here are some more photos from this hike.





    • By Shane
      It was a beautiful Sunday morning. Wanting to change things up a bit from our usual weekend routine of kayaking or hiking, we decided to go cycling. As we live in the Plateau sector of Gatineau, it is unbelievably easy to bike in minutes to Gatineau Park. Entering Gatineau Park from the pathway entrance just across from Tim Horton's on St. Raymond, we headed towards the Pioneers trail and the Gatineau Park Welcome Centre, located at P3. From here, heading East we continued on Sentier du Parc de la Gatineau, which runs near the road and has some short hills and plenty of turns and curves through the trees.
      A quick right turn at an intersection and we are brought down another path that travels underneath Boulevard des Allumetieres to cross to the other side. From here, the trail eventually rejoins and follows along closely to Allumetieres until you exit on St. Raymond. A little detour through a residential area and we are back on the path, this time the Pioneers Pathway. Featuring a few hills and a wooden bridge over a creek, this trail passes through a relatively dense forest area, where the sun interacting with the tree leaves produced beautiful light rays to pass through.
      Finally, the trail reaches one more intersection that leads us to the pedestrian overpass over Allumetieres, and towards home in the Plateau... and more bike trails through nature.
      I can't stress it enough, Gatineau Park is a jewel, and a paradise in nature. Whether it is to hike, walk, kayak, cycle or anything else, the scenery is beautiful and stunning and the park is immaculate. You never leave for home disappointed so come on out, discover your paradise and enjoy!
      Here are some pictures of our experiences out on the cycling trails. This trip was a loop that we did and was about 10km in distance, but at several points, there are plenty of options to stretch it even further and head off into new directions.
      Sentier du Parc de la Gatineau



      Pioneers Trail


      Heading up to the pedestrian overpass to cross over Allumetieres.

      The view from this angle on the bridge looks like something you'd see in Montreal or Laval... are we still in Gatineau?


      Heading onto the Sentier des Fées in the Plateau.



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