Canada

Description

West Coast Trail

Canada: the world's fourth largest country, after Russia, China, United States. When the water area is included, Canada is the second largest. A vast land area between 41 and 84 degrees. The southernmost tip is on the same latitude as Rome. The northernmost tip is near the North Pole. The USA are only slightly larger, but count 10 times as many inhabitants.

From east to west, the country displays a great geographical diversity. The Appalachian Mountains run through to Newfoundland on Canada's east coast. Going west, we encounter the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Lowlands. Further west lie the vast Canadian Interior Plains, hot summers, cold winters. Further west still, we hit the mountains of the Continental Divide, including the Canadian Rockies. The western coastline finally is green and sparsely populated. Most of Canada's land mass is virtually uninhabited: the Arctic part of Canada.

The hiking trails in Canada are as varied as the landscape. You have a wide choice of trails:

  1. Multi-use Trailways (eg Newfoundland T'railway). Many old railways have been turned into use as recreation trail, which is a very good thing of course. On these paths, cycling is probably more popular than walking, depending on the quality of the surface. Trailways typically are open to hiking, horse riding, cycling, cross country skiing and sometimes snowmobiling in winter;
  2. Wilderness hikes (for example the West Coast Trail, Canol Heritage Trail). These are rough trails, far from civilization, meant for experienced hikers who are prepared to dragging everything with them for an extended period;
  3. Long trails (eg the National Hiking Trail of Canada, Trans Canada Trail). These are semi-permanent projects to create a trail bigger than big. The Trans Canada Trail is a multiuse trail from the east coast to the west coast. Efforts to create a second trail, which is intended solely for walkers, presumably are not very succesful yet: the National Hiking Trail of Canada;
  4. Recreation Trails (For example the Niagara River Recreation Trail, visiting the Niagara Falls). These are easier paths, often multi-use, through nature, forest, fields and farmlands. Often they also have some historical significance. Along the way, options for sleeping often include hotels and B&B's beside campgrounds;
  5. The national and provincial parks offer a choice of shorter and longer walks. These trails are not allways known by a name. An advantage of this type of hiking are the often good camping facilities amidst beautiful scenery. The downside are the large crowds.

As mentioned before, trails are frequently multi-use. On the one hand there is a Canadian lobby to allow the widest possible public access to these public funded trails, including snowmobiling. On the other hand there is a counter lobby to exclusively designate these trails to the serious nature lover who is walking or skiing at most. To make things worse, we have to count on many ATV enthusiasts, who, with their noisy quads destroy the trails and squander nature. In short: war.

To conclude our brief introduction, let's spend some words to the famous Canadian bug. This is not one particular species of small animals, it is rather a collective noun for any annoying insect that you might encounter in nature, often in large numbers, such as black flies, mosquitoes, midges and deer flies. These hateful little creature often bite. They can be a plague, especially during the summer months, depending on weather conditions, humidity, and habitat. In spring they are not so numerous which makes for a more relaxed time on trail. But then there are obviously other pests, such as mud and snow.

From the small bite to the big bite: Canada has healthy populations of black bears, grizzly bears, polar bears and secretive but potentially dangerous cougars (puma's). Nature is wild and beautiful, especialy in Canada.

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Map

Hiking Map Canada NW Hiking Map Canada NE

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Maps

De Zwerver
Netherlands
  • Wandelkaart Highwood & Cataract Creek | Gem Trek |
  • > This is the fourth map in Gem Trek´s Kananaskis Country series, covering south Kananaskis Country from Sheep River Falls in the north to Plateau Mountain in the south. It extends coverage south where the Bragg Creek-Sheep Valley map leaves off, and east where the Kananaskis Lakes map leaves off. It covers the trails southeast of Highwood Pass... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
  • Wandelkaart Columbia Icefields | Gemtrek | Gem Trek Publishing
  • > This is the fourth map in Gem Trek´s Kananaskis Country series, covering south Kananaskis Country from Sheep River Falls in the north to Plateau Mountain in the south. It extends coverage south where the Bragg Creek-Sheep Valley map leaves off, and east where the Kananaskis Lakes map leaves off. It covers the trails southeast of Highwood Pass... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
  • Wandelkaart Bragg Creek and Sheep Valley | Gem Trek |
  • > This map covers the popular recreational terrain close to Calgary, from Sibbald Flats (Hwy 68) in the north, through the Elbow Valley (Hwy 66), and south to Hwy 546 in the Sheep Valley. The map extends west as far as Powderface Trail Road. >  > Hikers and cyclists eager to hit the trails early in the season should note that many of the... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
  • Wandelkaart 13. Best of Lake Louise Map and Guide | Gem Trek |
  • Mooie, gedetailleerde kaart uit de serie van Gem Trek Hiking map-guides, van het gebied Lake Louise. Helder kleurgebruik en met de beste / mooiste wandelroutes, hikes, fietsroutes, autoroutes en interessante plaatsen erop aangegeven. This map is designed for people who only plan to be in the Lake Louise area for one to three days, and want to... Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
  • Wandelkaart Kananaskis Lakes | Gem Trek |
  • > This map covers what some say is the most scenic terrain in all of Kananaskis Country -  the upper Smith-Dorrien-Spray Trail south of Mt. Shark, Peter Lougheed Provincial Park including the network of trails in the Kananaskis Lakes area, and the northern part of Elk Lakes Provincial Park. >  > Seven snowshoe trails have been added to this... Read more
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  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Kananaskis Lakes
  • Kananaskis Lakes at 1:50,000 on a waterproof and tear-resistant, GPS compatible recreational map in a series from Gem Trek Publishing covering the most popular areas of the Canadian Rockies: Banff, Jasper, Kootenay and Yoho National Parks, as well as Waterton Lakes NP further south and the adjoining Goat Haunt area of Montana. Maps in this... Read more
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IGN
France
  • Raids Multisports Nature
  • Nature, aventure, sport, liberté : tels sont les éléments qui font le succès grandissant des raids multisports de nature, activité en plein essor. Plus de 500 compétitions chaque année en France !Le premier guide consacré aux raids est signé par la vice-championne du monde de la... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
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