After an interesting visit to the Algonquin Logging Museum trail, we wanted to continue to explore Algonquin Park a bit. We opted for another short trail, accessible a few kilometres further on Highway 60: the Spruce Bog Boardwalk.
This 1.5-kilometre trail makes a loop that passes through two bogs and therefore allows you to see this unique environment up close. So after learning a little more about the history of the park on the Logging Museum trail, this time we were going to learn more about its ecosystems!
The trailhead to the Spruce Bog Boardwalk is located at 42.5 km on Highway 60. There is a large parking lot there, which was almost completely empty when we arrived. Without further ado, we set off on the trail.
Like most trails in Algonquin Park, you can pick up a booklet at the trailhead that gives more information about some of the highlights of the trail. In this case, the trail allows you to learn more about the creation of bog, and their unique ecosystem.
The first bog we came across on the trail is the Sunday Creek Bog. This bog is said to have been created by beavers who dammed the creek, thus flooding the plain. Over the centuries, the accumulation of aquatic plants has resulted in the creation of peat, which changed the landscape and created a unique ecosystem.
The second bog that is found along the trail was created when the glaciers retreated and a big chunk of ice melted and created a kettle lake. The lake that used to be there is now almost entirely covered with vegetation. But the bog still exists; under the bog mat, the water reaches a depth of nearly nine metres in places.
Between these two bogs, we passed through a forest of Black Spruce trees, a tree capable of surviving on acidic and nutrient-poor soil. I always like to come across spruce trees on a trail, because they remind me of the northern landscapes of the magnificent Quebec’s North Shore where I lived for a few years.
As much of the trail follows a long boardwalk, it’s an easy hike, and a great way to learn more about bogs, one of Algonquin Provincial Park’s important ecosystems.
There were still many more trails to explore within Algonquin Park, but for us it was time to go back home. I know the two short trails that we hiked only gave us a glimpse of all that Algonquin Park has to offer. But we will be back soon!
PS – I was hosted by Four Corners Algonquin during my visit to the region. This campground is located in Whitney, near the East Gate of Algonquin Park. Four Corners Algonquin has several ready-to-camp sites (including very popular bubble tents), and the tents come with a daily pass to Algonquin Park.