Saturday, 26 July 2014

East Pennant, Halifax County
N 44° 28.692 W 063° 37.670 
UTM: 20T E 450070 N 4925179

RIVER: Pennant River
CLASS: multiple cascades
SIZE: 5ft-8ft
RATING: excellent (****)

TRAIL: established woods trails
HIKING TIME: 30 minutes
CONDITIONS: moderate

Geocache: GCQT6V

NS Atlas Page: 751
NS topo map: 011D05 (Sambro)

DRIVING DIRECTIONS: from Halifax, take EXIT1D southbound off HWY102, onto Northwest Arm Drive (signed for Sambro and Herring Cove).Drive south 3.6km, then turn right onto Old Sambro Road (HWY306). Continue 1.1km and turn right to remain on Old Sambro Rd (at St.Pauls United Church), and continue a further 16.9km and turn right onto West Pennanat Road. Follow this road 2.0km and park before the bridge where Pennant River flows beneath the highway.

TRAIL DESCRIPTION: follow the well established trail up alongside the right hand side of the river up to the falls, a short way along. Further beyond the falls, following the trail, you will arrive at Grand Lake, with many massive boulders lining its edges. Crystal Crescent Provincial Park, with many further hours of coastal hiking, is just south of this area, just follow the signs.It has three beautiful white sand beaches and a 10km hike from the park to Pennant Point.

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Halibut Bay, Halifax County
N 44° 33.020 W 063° 33.335
20T E455871 N4933150

RIVER: Davidsons Brook
CLASS: plunge, chute
SIZE: 20'
RATING: excellent (****)

TRAIL: downstream
HIKING TIME: 15 minutes
CONDITIONS: moderate

Geocache: none

NS Atlas Page: 67/Z4
NS topo map: 011D12 (Halifax)

***NOTE:Davidsons Brook flows between two separate private properties. PLEASE STAY WITHIN THE BOUNDS OF THE BROOK AND STAY OFF THE HOMEOWNERS' LAND. Feel free to stop and talk with the homeowners if you wish, the elderly woman I spoke to on the date of my visit was a lovely woman, sitting in her lawn chair by the brook below the main falls. Please do not just take the easiest route across their property to the falls site uless you first gain their permission. ***

DRIVING DIRECTIONS: from Halifax, take EXIT1K, southbound onto Northwest Arm Drive (HWY3). Drive 3.6km and turn right onto Old Sambro Road (HWY306) ((signed for Harrietsfield and Williamswood)). Follow Old Sambro Rd 450m and then turn left onto Dentith Rd. After another 450m, take a right onto Herring Cove Rd. (there is a TimHortons to your left.. just saying..) Follow Herrnig Cove Rd 8.7km to Ashley Drive on your left hand side. Turn left onto this short road and park off to the right hand side before the gate. 

TRAIL DESCRIPTION: Walk back up onto Herring Cove Rd and approach the brook as it passes underneath the road. Follow as close to brookside as you can, crossing directly over the private driveway that the brook flows beneath and immediately back down to the brook. The was is quite rocky ,so be careful of slippery rocks and a few places require minimal climbing/descent capabilities. 

This short hike along Davidsons Brook leads right out to Halifax Harbour. The falls carve a notch through the erosion resistant bedrock in a pretty horsetail type plunge, spreading out as it crosses the rockface. A small 3foot steep cascade lays above the falls which leads into a long and powerful chute above the main falls. A further smaller 4-5foot cascade is below the falls, just before the brook empties into the Harbour. 

Upper Rawdon, Hants County
N 44° 59.378 W 063° 45.009 
UTM: 20T E 440866 N 4982072

RIVER: Herbert River
CLASS: steep cascades
SIZE: , 8', 6', 6'
RATING: very nice (***1/2)

TRAIL: old woods road/bushwhacking
CONDITIONS: moderate

Geocache: GC10XBZ

NS Atlas Page: 58/X1

NS topo map: 011D13 (Mt. Uniacke)

DRIVING DIRECTIONS: from Windsor, take EXIT5 off HWY101, heading eastward on HWY14, towards the village of Brooklyn (Newport). Drive 8.6km and turn left at the war memorial to remain on HWY14 (signed for Walton/Milford/Truro). Continue a further 750m and take a slight right at the top of the hill (at the PetroCanada gas station and convenience store) to remain on HWY14.. Continue along this road for 28.4km and make a hairpin turn to the right onto HWY354, immediately past an old service station. Drive along HWY254 for 9.6km, watching for an old road on the right just before a slight turn to the left. Park just beyond, well of the road.

TRAIL DESCRIPTION: follow the old road into Parkers Meadows, and when you reach the Herbert River, follow the trails through the woods upstram about 1km to the Devils Jaws. This area is part of the proposed 2900 ha Devils Jaws Wilderness Area. The going is fairly easy right up to the brook and decent trails exist along this 3km hike into the Devil's Jaws. 

Also known as Three Steps Down, this set of falls features three short plunges and step cascades that fall into separate deep stillwaters before dropping over the next fall. The Devils Jaws are a pristine place within Nova Scotia's wilderness and with the proposed Wilderness Area designation for the surrounding region along the Herbert River and Long Lake, and is soon to be a protected habitat for the Canada Warbler, Rusty Blackbird, Olive-sided Flycatcher and the Wood Turtle, all of which are listed in the federal "species-at-risk" program. 

photo: Robert Pierrynowski (2009)

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Cheverie, Hants County
N 45° 08.420 W 064° 11.465 
20T 406353mE 4999229mN

RIVER: unnamed Brook
CLASS: steep cascades
SIZE: , 18'
RATING: average (***1/2)

TRAIL: dirt road
HIKING TIME: 15 minutes
CONDITIONS: moderate

Geocache: none

NS Atlas Page: 47/Y3

NS topo map: 021H01 (Wolfville)

DRIVING DIRECTIONS: from Windsor, take EXIT5 and follow the ruondabout onto Wentworth Rd, headed east. Follow the highway 5.8km and then turn left onto HWY14. Continue along 4.2km int the village of Brooklyn, turning left at the war memorial to remain on WHY14. (Signed for Walton, Milford and Truro). Drive 750m, to the top of the hill, and continue straight at the Petro-Canada service station onto HWY215. Follow this road to its conclusion, which is a T-Intersection. Stay left to remain on HWY215. Drive 23.2km (from the PetroCanada) along the shoreline drive towards Cheverie, watching for a small marker stone on the left hand side demarking the Avonview Cemetery. Turn left onto this small dirt access road and park at the cemetery.

TRAIL DESCRIPTION: follow the road from the cemetery to where the unnamed brook, which empties out from the Cheverie quarry recreation site (a great place for a quick and COLD dip on a hot summer day), crosses under the road. Head down into the ravine onthe downstream side of the brook, where you will find the falls and the drystone built remains of the former millsite. 

St. Croix, Hants County
N 44° 56.018 W 064° 02.613 
UTM: 20T E 417657 N 4976107

RIVER: Starks Lake Brook
CLASS: cascades
SIZE: , 8'
RATING: average (***)

TRAIL: upstream/bushwhacking
HIKING TIME: 30 minutes
CONDITIONS: moderate

Geocache: none

NS Atlas Page: 57/Z2

NS topo map: 021A16 (Windsor)

DRIVING DIRECTIONS: Take EXIT4 from HWY101, travelling west along the Evangeline Trail (HWY1) for 2.1km, turning left onto Salmon Hole Dam Road (just past the bridge at St. Croix Dam Falls). Follow this road 2.4km to where Starks Lake Brook crosses underneath the road, and park.

TRAIL DESCRIPTION:Hike upstream or along the side of the brook to these small cascades. While not the largest of falls, the mature forest surrounding you is quite stunning, and the continued hike up to Starks Lake beyond the cascades leads to ample fishing oppurtunities.