Deacon Escarpment Trail
Escarpment views from near Goose Lake Rd
The Deacon escarpment, sometimes referred to as the Tramore Cliffs or Blueberry Mountain, lies along a major fault line that likely was initiated over 500 million years ago and reactivated during the Mesozoic Era when most faulting took place within the Ottawa-Bonnechere Graben. From the top of the escarpment, you’ll be rewarded with stunning views of the Bonnechere Valley, including the Bonnechere River, Round and Golden Lakes and the Wilno Hills. Beaudry’s Creek is visible along a section of the trail, and forms small waterfalls and chutes as it runs towards Kilby Road. A number of small wetlands, ponds and lakes can be found in the upper regions of the escarpment. This area of provincial crown land is known as the Deacon Escarpment Conservation Reserve and covers an area of 2200 hectares, and rises over 150 meters from the Bonnechere River Valley. Plant life to watch for include smaller purple fringed orchid, blue skullcap, fragrant bedstraw, fragrant sumac, wood lily, early saxifrange, New Jersey tea, rusty woodsia, Mackay’s fragile fern, woodland sunflower, red oak, and various lichens, grasses and shrubs. Eastern red cedar, rare this far north, can be found along the face of the escarpment. You may see bear, moose, deer, fox, wolf, coyote, fisher, marten, and possibly aquatic animals such as mink, otter, muskrat and beaver. The rare prairie warbler has been reported here. Common ravens and turkey vultures are often seen from the top of the escarpment circling above the valley below.
Directions » The unmarked trailhead is located at the junction of Tramore Rd and Kilby Rd, on the east side of Tramore Rd. Look for the beginning of the trail behind the Kilby Road sign. The trail is moderate to difficult, steep in some areas, and levels off near the top of the escarpment. Approximately 2 km round trip to the top of the escarpment.
Escarpment views from Kilby Rd entrance looking south to Golden Lake (left) and Round Lake (right)
Round Lake to Golden Lake - the longest crownland trail in Renfrew County
The below map outlines an informal 20km (???) route between the two lakes that with one small exception travels through crown land (green). This unmarked route can be easily followed because of its upland nature and its more or less north-south direction. The sense of exploration that comes from hiking this informal trail also facilitates locating many interesting natural features along the way.