What to See (and Photograph) in Gros Morne National Park?
Those of you who have looked at the itinerary for our Viking Trail photography tour will have noticed that the plan for our four days exploring Gros Morne National Park was lacking detail. Well here it is!
Day 4, Tue. June 19:(B,L) Today marks the start of our exploration of Gros Morne National Park. Included will be a short, easy 4km hike along the Tablelands Trail. This trail is considered a ‘must do’ for all visitors to Gros Morne..
17. Tablelands Trail
Distance: 4km return Terrain/Elevation: Gentle/160-235m
The main trail follows an old roadbed as it skirts the base of the mountain. You will see unusual plants and rocks as you enjoy broad panoramic views. The trail ends in the glacially carved Winter House Brook Canyon. For a shorter walk, branch off onto the Serpentine Loop, where you will see characteristic plants of the Tablelands alongside a winding path.
The trailhead starts 4 km west of Discovery Centre in Woody Point on route 431.
Geology here marks a time when the continents of Africa and North America collided, pushing these rocks, originally beneath the ocean, to their present position on land.
Please stay on the trail as much as possible to avoid walking on the tiny rare plants that grow on this alien landscape.
Time permitting, a visit to the Discovery Centre in Woody Point (Bonnie Bay)
Total driving roundtrip; 140 km.
Day 5, Wed. June 20:(B,L) We continue our exploration of Gros Morne National Park as we transfer our base to the Bayside Cottages in Rocky Harbour, 71 km.
12. Southeast Brook Falls Trail
Distance: 700m return Terrain/Elevation: Gentle/160-170m
Take a short stroll through a balsam fir and white birch forest to the top of Southeast Brook Falls. There the stream flows over a billion-year-old ridge of resistant granite and plunges 40 metres. The falls are particularly impressive during spring run-off. Located 9km north of the park entrance at Wiltondale, Route 430. We’ll make a stop here on our way to Rocky Harbor.
Lobster Cove Head
Distance: 2km return Terrain/Elevation: Gentle/20-30m
Located 1 km west of Rocky Harbour on route 430.
A sign by the parking lot illustrates the paths down to the shoreline and along coastal cliffs.
The rocky beach with its tidal pools is excellent for exploring at low tide.
The lightkeeper’s house is open to visitors from mid May to mid October and contains an exhibit about the history of the area.
This is a great spot for sunsets, complete with a lighthouse! Weather permitting we’ll come back after supper.
Day 6, Thu. June 21:(B,L) Continue our exploration of Gros Morne National Park.
9. Berry Hill Pond Trail
Distance: 2km return Terrain/Elevation: Gentle/90-110m
Follow the short loop to circle the forested shores of Berry Hill Pond. This area is a favourite beaver habitat, as lodges, dams, and stumps all indicate. Are beavers here this year? Look for fresh tree cuttings and the dug-up roots of water lilies, sure signs that beavers are present
6. Berry Head Pond Trail
Distance: 2km return Terrain/Elevation: Flat/20-30m
Follow this trail around Berry Head Pond and through forest and bogs. The patchwork of wetlands, ponds, and dense forests you’ll see is typical of the park’s coastal lowlands. This environment is a good place to look for songbirds and waterfowl.
6 km north of Rocky Harbour on route 430.
The first 350 metres of the trail is wheelchair accessible. This allows people with limited mobility to enjoy the pond.
This is a good trail for windy days.
5. Coastal Trail
Distance: 6km return Terrain/Elevation: Flat/5-10m
The path once connected two small fishing communities: Bakers Brook and Green Point. It leads you by cobble beaches and through short but dense coastal forests known locally as “tuckamore.” It’s a perfect trail for enjoying coastal landscapes, ocean breezes, and views of the setting sun. Tuckamore is the Newfoundland word for the stunted trees that grow along the coast and in alpine areas. Frost and wind nip back the trees’ exposed branches, giving them their wind-swept profile.
This trail follows the old winter mail road along the coast between Baker’s Brook and Green Point.
The long cobble beach, small ponds, and coastal tuckamore provide a pleasant variety of habitats.
Day 7, Fri. June 22:(B,L) Continue our exploration of Gros Morne National Park.
3. Western Brook Pond
Distance: 6km return (1.8km scenic loop) Terrain/Elevation: Flat/10-35m
Follow the trail to the shores of Western Brook Pond and its impressive backdrop of spectacular cliffs and the Long Range Mountains. Along the way you’ll cross the bogs and forested ridges of the parks’ coastal lowlands. Look for interpretive signs that explain some of the area’s natural features.
27 km north of Rocky Harbour on route 430.
The 2.7-kilometre gravel and boardwalk main trail leads to the departure point of the Western Brook Pond boat tour. The view alone is worth the hike, even if you are not able to take the boat tour.
You can also explore a 1.8-kilometre side loop to reach the banks of Western Brook. This path also leads to the start of the Snug Harbour Trail.
2. Steve's Trail/Broom Point
Distance: 900m return Terrain/Elevation: Gentle/0-20m
Follow the trail to the mouth of Western Brook and a seaside meadow with panoramic views of the park’s northern coastline, Western Brook Gorge, and the Long Range Mountains. “Steve’s Trail” is a local name that recalls the fisherman who once used it to reach his fishing premises.
34 km north of Rocky Harbour on route 430.
The gravel road leads to the restored summer fishing premises at Broom Point, and to a small cove, site of a cemetery from the 1800s.
The number preceding most of the trail names above matches to the trail number on the Parks Canada map that can be found at https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/nl/grosmorne/visit/cartes-maps
Weather is a big factor when it comes to photography and will play a part in what we do and when we do it. Be flexible!
Trail descriptions/information was excerpted from Parks Canada, Gros Morne National Park, hiking; https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/nl/grosmorne/activ/experiences/randonnee-hiking
This tour, running June 16 to June 29, 2018 is 70% sold! There are three spots available, including a possible double occupancy spot. We have a lady that would like to share accommodation for this tour. If you are a lady that would like to explore this possibility (a savings of $800!) let me know. I’ll put you in touch.
For the complete itinerary, or to sign up, please contact us via the Contact tab.
Join us for what promises to be an amazing tour!