Bay du Nord Wilderness Area, NL
Think of it as Newfoundland the way it once was — Bay du Nord Wilderness Area is a 2,900-sq-km expanse of raw land in the centre of The Rock. There are no visitor’s centres or designated campsites. There are, however, 15,000 caribou, more Canada geese than anywhere else in the province, 400-metre Mount Sylvester and a series of old fisherman’s trails that wind through the wilderness. Some trails even lead to canoe routes — such as the 100-km Kepenkeck Lake Paddle. Camping is allowed anywhere; acquire a permit at a Department of Natural Resource Office. The Trans-Canada Highway, Route 360 and Route 201 all skirt the edges of Bay du Nord — most access off Route 360 and then proceed into the wild.
Dates: June to October
For More Info: env.gov.nl.ca
Paddles & Sand Dunes
Kouchibouguac National Park, NB
With its inshore waters relatively well-protected and abundant salt marshes, lagoons and beaches, Kouchibouguac National Park is the Maritimes’ premier sea-kayak destination. The park has three backcountry campsites — but paddlers should head for Pointe-a-Maxime, a water-access-only site on the park’s south coast. Putting in at Cape Saint-Louis, it shouldn’t take more than an hour to paddle to Pointe-a-Maxime. The partially wooded sites have fire pits, picnic tables, pit toilets and firewood. From this location, day-paddles include South Kouchibouguac Dune, Blacklands Gulley and North Richibucto Dune. You may even catch sight of the rare piping plover, an endangered seabird that has recently returned to Kouchibouguac’s beaches.
Dates: May to October
For More Info: pc.gc.ca/kouchibouguac
Liberty Lake Trail
Kejimkujik National Park, NS
More than 80 per cent of Nova Scotia’s Kejimkujik National Park is classified as “backcountry” and there are 46 designated campsites that can only be accessed via canoe or bootleather. At each, expect tent pads, fire pits, pit privy and cables to hoist your food cache clear of bears. So, when exploring the traditional home of the Mi’kmaq, where does one start? For the quintessential Keji experience, tackle the 64-km Liberty Lake Trail. There are 11 options for backcountry camping along the route; though three or four nights out is a good rule of thumb. Lakes, babbling brooks, loons and moose will be your companions as you loop your way through mixed softwoods en route to Campsite 42 — the most remote in the park’s entire 404-sq-km. Bonus: Kejimkujik is a Dark Sky Preserve, so the night-time scenery rivals the daytime.
Dates: May to October
For More Info: pc.gc.ca/kejimkuji
This article originally appeared in our Summer 2014 issue.