Cape Jourimain Nature Centre has a trail system made up of 3 trails and beach access that provides visitors with outstanding opportunities for exploring different habitats and enjoying a wide range of coastal views. (Our trails are not wheelchair-accessibile at this time.)
To help protect the National Wildlife Area’s sensitive habitats, visitors are asked to remain on the trails and follow the ethic of leave nothing but footprints; take nothing but photographs & memories.
- In early spring — or after a heavy rainfall — trails may be flooded in areas.
- In summer, mosquitoes can be expected as well as black flies.
- Poison ivy grows along sections of our trails so we recommend solid footwear and long trousers to avoid contact.
To treat poison ivy victimes: first remove all contaminated clothing or footwear, and clean it carefully without direct skin contact. Residual plant oils on clothing can easily recontaminate unless it is thoroughly washed. Next, wash all affected skin with strong soap and water, followed by rubbing alclohol. Antihistamine first-aid creams are often helpful, and a tincture (extract in alcohol) of calendula is also said to relieve the itching.
The Gunning Trail
3 km — about 1 hour at a leisurely walking pace
Passing under the 1st arch of the Confederation Bridge, The Gunning Trail trail takes you up the coast of Jourimain Island to a dramatic lookout at Gunning Point — offering spectacular views of the Confederation Bridge along the way.
- The trail loops through spruce forest and sunny openings full of wild roses.
- Lookouts over the dunes and brackish marsh provide good opportunities to observe some of the area’s intriguing flora and fauna.
- Out on the Northumberland Strait, sea ducks dive for mussels, gulls squabble over bits of food, shorebirds and dabbling ducks feed in the brackish marsh, and warblers and song sparrows sing from fields and forest.
ATTENTION: In 2018, the trail is still open but some sections of it are cloed for security reasons. You can’t loop anymore through the shore but you can adventure yourself into the Spruce forest and discover the biodiversity.
The Lighthouse Trail
2 km — about 40 minutes at a leisurely walking pace
Cape Jourimain’s historic lighthouse awaits you at the far end of this loop trail.
- You’ll follow the shoreline through fields of bayberry, wild roses, asters and goldenrods and into young forests of spruce, poplar and maple.
- Look for shrubs loaded with serviceberries, as there are sure to be robins and waxwings feeding there.
- As you admire the lighthouse and its construction, marvel at the flying skills of the many cliff swallows that build their mud nests on the tower.
- The return trip will take you through mossy forests along the historic road that was used to access the lighthouse as far back as 1870.
The Trenholm Trail
6 km — about 2 hours at a leisurely walking pace
Trenholm is a longer trail that takes you into the heart of the National Wildlife Area as you head across Jourimain Island and follow the causeway to Trenholm Island.
- Saltmarshes, mature woods, old homestead sites and beautiful coastal views are some of the attractions of this trail.
- With a bit of luck you may spot a wild orchid in bloom or catch a glimpse of a white-tailed deer.
- Be sure to plan enough time to really enjoy all that this trail has to offer.
- There is a lush understory growth of poison ivy on the southern portion of the trail, and so we recommend that you wear closed-toe footwear and long trousers.