Photo: Mathieu Dupuis | Sépaq

Jacques-Cartier National Park

Follow the Wolves’ tracks

Trail / Hike

A little tougher

Full day

The 14 trails of Jacques-Cartier National Park give you plenty of ground to cover in your hiking boots. The most interesting trail is Les Loups (The Wolves) because of its uneven, ever-changing terrain. It’s not the easiest route in the park, but if you go for it you’ll be glad you challenged yourself when you get to the end and the view.

Jacques-Cartier National Park

Parc national de la Jacques-Cartier, Stoneham-et-Tewkesbury, QC, Canada

Get Directions

Driving time from Quebec City

30 minutes

Hiking trails

14

Campsites

120

Planning your hike

It’s a long way up, so be prepared

Where to start

Most trails in Jacques-Cartier National Park are easy or intermediate. Two of them are classified “difficult,” and the longest trail in the park is 24.8km. If you’ve got hiking experience and are up for a challenge, you spend the day hiking Les Loups (11km, difficult), or camp overnight and explore another long trail the next day, like the historical Le Scotora trail (16km, difficult).

Taming the Wolves

Les Loups trail has a lot of short steep hills that go up and down like a natural roller coaster. At the end, you’ve actually ascended 447m. Make sure to wear good shoes and bring trekking poles to help you on your climb, especially if you’re carrying any weight. Bringing water, snacks, and your 10 hiking essentials is also a must. Depending on your level of fitness and experience, the round trip may take from three to five hours.

Biodiversity to boot

You may want to take a break at the first viewpoint to take a look at the landscape. Be aware of the little creatures around you, as the park is full of squirrels, chipmunks and birds. If you’re lucky, you could see a porcupine or a marten. Look at the sky and at the top of the trees, because you might also spot a falcon or an osprey. The park is a habitat for grey wolves and caribou as well, but they’re extremely elusive.

A close call

When you arrive at the top, you’ll notice the Jacques-Cartier River down in the valley. Take time to pull out some snacks and soak in the view before you turn around and head back. A great park and rich wildlife, just 30 minutes from Quebec City for you and your hiking boots to explore.

Essential Gear

Just the right stuff to head out on the trails.

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