Breathtaking Views in the Outaouais
The Outaouais offers numerous vantage points that allow you to enjoy its majestic landscapes. Hikers will tell you: there’s nothing more satisfying, after a steep climb, than discovering an amazing view. From the Petite Nation to the Pontiac, put on your hiking boots and discover the region’s most beautiful viewpoints.
The Route des Zingues
In the heart of Duhamel you’ll find one of the most beautiful sections of Quebec’s National Trail. The Route des Zingues passes through an old-growth forest and part of the Papineau-Labelle Wildlife Reserve. The trip begins near the beach at the south end of Lac Gagnon and ends at the north end of Lac Preston, providing outstanding viewpoints throughout the hike. You’ll be able to stop for a picnic and admire the scenery on Mont Kajakokanak, on the Sentier des Pins, at the Rocher de Sisyphe or on Mont Weskarini. Note that the trail, which totals about 20 kilometres one-way, can be hiked in different sections.
Gagnon Lake Rd., Duhamel (Quebec)
Leashed dogs are allowed, except in Parc Pimatina (P1).
Parc des Montagnes Noires de Ripon
In the Petite Nation, the Parc des Montagnes Noires de Ripon is a paradise for hikers and mountain bike enthusiasts. For the most beautiful scenic vistas, choose the Belvédère loop (4 kilometres), which features a 12-metre-high observation tower as well as the famous Mont Grand-Pic lookout, 426 metres in altitude. You can also park close by, without hiking the trails.
39 de la Montagne-Noire Rd., Ripon (Quebec)
Leashed dogs are allowed.
Oiseau Rock Trail
The Oiseau Rock Trail is arguably one of the most spectacular hikes to do in the Outaouais. This sacred site, located on Algonquin territory in the Pontiac, is a place of great natural beauty. Between the forest, the lake and the rock face that rises 150 metres above the Ottawa River, the viewpoints are outstanding. Also considered an archaeological and historical site, the 9-kilometre round-trip trail allows hikers to learn more thanks to its interpretation panels. In hot weather, take advantage of the lake at the summit to cool off.
1 Schyan Rd., Sheenboro (Quebec)
For experienced hikers. Because the route has many dangerous sections, it is not recommended to do this hike with young children.
Certainly the best-known hike, the Champlain Lookout is also one to put on the top of your list. At the top of the Eardley Escarpment in Gatineau Park, the sector is home to a weakened ecosystem, between the Canadian Shield and the St. Lawrence Lowlands. The belvedere can be reached via the parkways, by bike or car, or by taking the trails from the P12 parking lot (9-km round-trip hike).
Gatineau Park, Chelsea (Quebec)
For cyclists or motorists, check the parkway schedules before visiting.
Mont Morissette Regional Park
The Vallée-de-la-Gatineau also has its summit. Mont Morissette, which overlooks the municipality of Blue Sea and its majestic lake, rises to over 400 metres. It boasts some 13 kilometres of marked trails. From trails 1 and 2, don’t miss the observation tower and lookout, which provide an incredible view of the valley and a dozen lakes.
Lac Long Rd., Blue Sea (Québec)
Leashed dogs are allowed.
Now you have a few ideas of peaks to explore. And if ever you’d like to enjoy a spectacular 360-degree view, with thrills as a bonus, try the new interprovincial zipline. An urban flight with your feet dangling over the Ottawa River!