Manitou Mountain Trails
Fall is probably the only time of the year where I really appreciate hiking. It’s almost impossible to hike around here in the Spring and Summer due to the extremely high amount of black flies and mosquitos. Winter is great for snowshoeing but the snow is almost always too deep or the trails are too icy to just “hike”.
We use to tend to hike the same trails around here, Eagle’s Nest and to the top of Calabogie Peaks because both offer, in my opinion, some of the best views in the Ottawa Valley. But this year we discovered that there are many more breathtaking views that are worth the few extra steps.
Now hiking to the top of the Peaks can offer an amazing view of Calabogie Lake but don’t stop there. There is a whole network of trails located behind and around Calabogie Peaks. The different trails range in difficulty and length of time to complete. From easy 1.5 hour hikes to more challenging 4-8 hour hikes.
My favourite part of these trails are the lookouts of course. Without the lookouts these trails are still gorgeous covered in fallen leaves but it’s always nice to stop for a snack break where there is a view of the valley.
A little side note – I am 18 weeks pregnant and have been loving hiking while pregnant but there are a few things that have definitely helped me out.
1. Mike carrying everything (Thank you, you’re the best)
2. Poles (for help with balance while descending)
3. Leggings (since my pants don’t fit, I love hiking in my Columbia under layers)
4. Good shoes (comfortable feet are so important, thanks KEEN Canada)
5. Toilet paper and unlimited snacks (because peeing often and eating often just seem to go together now)
Eagle’s Nest has always been a favourite of mine because of it’s 120m cliff and there are a few different ways you can get to this lookout. I would say that it is one of the most popular hikes in Calabogie and it is also known for it’s great rock and ice climbing.
There are still a few sections of the trails that we have not travelled and two lookouts that we have yet to see. We plan to finish all the Manitou Mountain Trails this winter. These are not the only trails there are to hike in Calabogie. Other trails include the Madawaska Nordic Trails (which I prefer to cross country ski), the K&P trail, and many four wheeling trails that are not marked as hiking trails but can easily be hiked if you are familiar with the area or have a GPS.
The Greater Madawaska offers a variety of hiking trails, some which can be used as snowshoeing and cross country ski trails as well. It is a beautiful area within Ontario’s Highlands that does not get explored as much as it should. I shouldn’t complain, it’s really nice to have empty trails but when it comes to nature I don’t mind sharing as long as people keep it clean and respect the area.