Out There

Interior canoe & back packing trips of the Clarke boys.

Canoeing Nova Scotia

Canoeing Card Lake Nova Scotia, Card Lake Canoe Trip

Posted by Steven on May 20, 2014 at 12:35 AM

Where: Card Lake, near Windsor NS

Put in: Public boat launch at Card Lake Provincial Park

Size: Approximately 10 km's


Description: Card Lake is the beginning of the Avon River watershed and it has a Nova Scotia Power Dam that’s not being used anymore. Over the years, there’s been talk of removing the dam – which could adversely impact 20 km of ecosystem – but so far, the dam remains intact and the water levels are kept constant.


Remoteness:  No Cottages, no motor boats.  Wilderness setting at the end of the lake


Camping: plenty to find in low or high water


Fishing: No luck on this lake


Interesting facts: Hydro damn at far end of the lakeApparently an old rangers tower can be found off trail but we have yet to find it.

Wild life: LEECHES (lots of them)

Another beauty in Nova Scotia Card Lake has a few small cottages at the beginning of the lake near the public boat launch in Card Lake Provincial Park but is otherwise untouched and free of boater traffic.  The lake itself can be paddled in an entire day and from put in to the tip of the lake is a 40 minute paddle.  Despite this short paddle camping and remoteness is in abundance with white sand beaches to be found in low water and more rocky camping options to be found in high water.  The boys and I enjoyed paddling by many old camp fires that at the time of our trip were submerged under water.

Again despite it's releative smaller size the lack of motorized boats and cottages really give off a wilderness feeling when camped at the end of the lake and the times we have camped we have yet to counter fellow paddlers.

Of note on Card Lake is the lack of shade so ensure you bring a tarp which we learned the hard way baking in the sun on a hot July weekend.  Card lake is also leech central and you will certainly encounter your share when taking a dip in the crystal clear waters so this lake is not for the squeamish :-)

Depending on what season you are attempting the lake be sure to scavenge for wild cranberries which are in abundance and boil yourself an evening cup of pine needle/cranberry tea !  I have also read reports of a ranger cabin that can be found through one of the trails but have not confirmed this myself.  The damn at the nothern end of the lake is also worth exploring but it seems to have drive in access so i would avoid camping here unless you are prepared to share your site with the kind of people who don't mind leaving their garbage and empty beer cans behind for others to clean up.

Conclusion: For a quick paddle or a kid friendly 1-2 day trip that still offers a wilderness feeling Card Lake won't disapoint.



Categories: Canoeing Card Lake, Card Lake Canoe Trip, Canoeing Nova Scotia, Nova Scotia Canoe Trip

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