A Relaxing Fall Hike on Superior's Shore

Walking the trails at Little Trout Bay Conservation Area, you can hear the lap of Lake Superior through the trees.

While exploring Thunder Bay, don’t miss Little Trout Bay, located just 5kms down Little Trout Bay Road off of Highway 61. It is a perfect spot to get a little taste of everything Northwest Ontario has to offer.

vertical trail

The best part about walking the trail at Little Trout Bay Conservation Area is hearing the lap of Lake Superior through the trees.  I stroll over the moss-covered path, which makes a loop through the woods, and head towards the lake.

leaves water thru

I can smell the blueness of Superior before I catch a glimpse of it between tree trunks and tangled branches. It sparkles in the sun, and as the trail takes me closer, the rugged headland across the bay, a long, protecting arm that keeps Little Trout Bay sheltered from the shifting moods of Superior, comes into view.


The shape of the land here creates a natural access point for boaters heading out on to the big lake. The two easily accessible boat launches at Little Trout Bay make this one of only two areas within the Lakehead Regional Conservation Authority (LRCA) lands that offer this kind of access to Lake Superior, the other being Silver Harbour.

picnic table

But lake access isn’t the only reason to visit Little Trout Bay. There’s a picnic area, with tables dotting the forest sloping down towards the bay, a pavilion in case the weather turns and, of course, the trail that loops up into the woods and then around to follow the shoreline back to the start again.

long trail

For the more adventurous and sure-footed, there is another trail across the road from the wide, gravel parking area. It is not marked, but I head to the spot the map says it will be and sure enough there is a part in the tall grasses along the side of the dirt road. I step through it and find a trail leading into the cool of the woods.

cliff thru trees

I follow a set of moose tracks in the soft ground until the trail becomes a tumble of boulders and high-arching tree roots shadowed by a cliff face on the left. I scramble up a short, steep hill and then follow a meandering footpath atop a treed ridge that soon emerges at a lookout point, complete with a weathered, lichen-covered bench. The north-facing view showcases the rugged landscape, taking in nearby Mount Mollie and the dauntless boreal forest spreading into the distance.


About Heather Peden

Heather Peden is a writer, blogger and photographer living in Neebing, Ontario, a rural neighbouring municipality south of Thunder Bay. Heather has a passion for what she calls “life in the wilds of Northwest Ontario”, and it's reflective in her blog, “Three Dogs and a Couch,” and photoblog “Light Sifting.”

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