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Friday, June 15, 2012

Driving New Brunswick’s Acadian Coast—Biking Kouchibouguac National Park

The Bay of Fundy and Fundy National Park might be the better known of the two national parks in New Brunswick, but Kouchibouguac (pronounced Koo-she-boo-gwac) is just as loved in the province. Only an hour north of Moncton, it’s a must-stop on the Acadian Route, especially for bikers and beach lovers. The national park has 60 km of hard-packed gravel trails, not unlike the carriage path trails in Maine’s Acadia National Park. This includes a sweet 6 km singletrack mountain biking route along Major Kollock Creek. 
 
I rented a bike at Ryans near spacious campsites nestled into the Acadian forest. There are no speeds on the bike because there are very few hills to endure. I cruised along the Kouchibouguac River smelling the sweet pines and spruce. The river is popular with paddlers in summer, coming to see the otters and osprey diving for fish. Also in the park, it’s not unusual to run into black bear, moose, and beavers. At La Source, site of a former well for villagers that used to live in the area, I returned past Ryans to the highlight of the park, Kellys Beach. Arguably, the most exquisite beach in the entire province, Kellys is a six-kilometer stretch of white sand that dips down into the surprisingly warm waters. To reach the coveted coastline, you walk on a long boardwalk over a lagoon, marsh, and dunes. After you’ve had your fill of sun and sea, return to Ryans to drop off the bike and grab a beer at the outdoor patio of Ryan’s Landing. The perfect ending to a perfect day.
 
I’ve had a blast driving the Acadian Route. Thanks for coming along for the ride. I’ll be at a classic Maine coastal resort, Linekin Bay, on Monday and Tuesday, back on Wednesday with one bonus blog on New Brunswick’s Bay of Fundy. In the meantime, stay active!
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 06/15/12 at 10:00 AM
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Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk.

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