Parc National de Frontenac, Route du Parc-de-Frontenac, Adstock, QC, Canada
Driving time from Quebec City
Choose your landing pad
You’ll probably want to spend more than a day in this park, and if you want to spend most of your time in either a canoe or a kayak, there’s a wide variety of campsites for you to choose from. Parc national de Frontenac is split up into three sections that are spread out over 155km2 around Grand lac Saint-François. The southern sector was laid out with paddlers in mind. There are a number of different campgrounds that you can only get to by canoe or kayak, all within quiet woodland settings. There’s even a little island site right in the middle of Baie Sauvage (le Balbuzard) if you want to have 360-degree access to the waves.
Ready to launch
There are a few different options to launch your canoe or kayak in the southern section of the park. Lac à la Barbue and Lac des Îles are great circuits for new paddlers. Baie Sauvage is a little bigger, so depending on the winds, you likely want to be more of an intermediate-level paddler before heading out that way.
Depending on the weather, high winds can turn any peaceful paddle into a bit of a treacherous journey. Make sure to wait until the waters calm down a bit before heading back out on the water.
Early morning wildlife watching
Morning paddles are a great way to start the day. The waters are often a little calmer and it’s usually the best time to spot local wildlife. Marshes, water lilies and pickerelweed turn this zone into a natural art show come July. Keep an eye out for moose that are common to the area or any of the 200 bird species that call the park home — remember to pack your binoculars. Giving wildlife their space is just one of the 7 Leave No Trace tips to know, and certain areas of this lake are protected for conservation purposes (marked by white buoys).
Head north to the peat bog
If you’ve toured much of the waterways in the southern sector and feel like spending some time on dry land, head to the northern Saint-Daniel sector. It’s dominated by a massive peat bog where you can check out carnivorous plants and wide open spaces through a circuit of interpretive panels. Nearly 5km of boardwalk gives you access into the bog, and there are two observation towers to get you a bird’s eye view of the entire area.