Ottawa, Gatineau and the surrounding area are blessed with thousands of kilometers of hiking trails. The trails are varied in length, access, types of trails and their uses.
Most people think of the Gatineau Hills when they consider going for a hike, but the Ottawa area offers hikes in all directions.
In the east end of the city, The Mer Bleue trail is located on two ridges with a wetland in the between. The full trail is 10km, but it allows you to do shorter routes if time doesn’t allow the full trail. With the wetlands in the middle of the ridges it offers a wider variety of wildlife.
In the west The Old Quarry Trail off Eagleson Road offers 10km of trails that incorporate segments of The Rideau Trail System, and the Ottawa-Carleton Trailway. The hike can be done in three sections.
In the south The Pine Grove Forestry Trail is an easy 6km walk with areas for eating, outhouses, and interpretive panels along the way. Making for a great family outing.
Make sure that you are well prepared before you venture out to hike. Sturdy shoes or boots, a knapsack with an energy bar or light snack, water, hat, light coat or sweater and hiking poles will all add to your hiking experience. Know your limits and of those that are with you, stay with in them, and enjoy a spectacular day of hiking in the Ottawa area.
You can find these hikes and many more in the book Hiking Trails of Ottawa.