Winter is lovely in Ottawa, particularly when there is snow on the ground. Because many of the trails we use in the summer are closed, finding the way out may be difficult. Or in the winter, routes are only maintained for cross-country skiing, and thus not accessible to dogs.
However, even in the winter, there are plenty of wonderful hiking destinations provided you are aware of where to go. Even in the winter, we still try to go outside. We use snowshoes to assist with that. The locations we have discovered and cherished over the winter months are listed below.
Gatineau Park, Québec
Yes, of course. Get outside and play in the snow at Gatineau Park.
Only a handful of the Gatineau Park paths are used for winter hiking (rather than snowshoeing). Walking along these paths is simple since the trails are maintained weekly. During the winter, dogs are permitted on each of these trails:
The Lauriault Path
The Lauriault Trail is a 5 km walk with plenty of adventure and sights to see. Additionally, there are attractive vistas, a magnificent waterfall, and unique ruins. A short stroll in the park is just the thing for an easy walk.
This route includes the Sugarbush Trail
The Sugarbush Trail begins at the visitors’ centre of Gatineau Park. There’s just 1.9 km of hiking here, and it’s a very short path. In order to extend the walk, we put on Trial 13. The Sugarbush Trail is a great place to stroll beside your loved ones, with its scenic views, interesting features, and a scenic rock shelter. This path is great in the winter since it is very simple and short.
An explorer’s adventure
Other than the Pioneers Trail, which is only designated for trekking in the winter, we haven’t gone out on any of the other trails yet. This is one of the items that will be in stock this winter.
You can find plenty of snowshoeing paths in Gatineau Park, as well as fat biking routes that are combined with snowshoeing. Trails that are marked with pink marks on the NCC’s map of Gatineau Park are suitable for snowshoeing. In comparison to other Ottawa regions, Gatineau Park’s snow stays on the ground for a shorter (and longer) period of time, which makes it an excellent destination for winter trekking.
Some of the snowshoe routes we have liked and gone on include:
The trail marked Trails 60 and 61.
For those who wish to give snowshoeing a try, Trails 60 and 61 are great options. Hiking is just one loop or two distinct loops. You may either finish one loop (for a shorter walk) or both loops for a longer hike. You get the sensation of being lost in the woods while you’re out exploring these paths since they are located just outside of the Gatineau Park Visitor’s Centre. The Visitor’s Centre rents snowshoes, so if you’re a first-time snowshoer, these paths may be a great way to see whether snowshoeing is for you.