Southwest Nova Scotia is one of the best birding destinations in Canada. From mixed woodlands, to coastal salt marshes and beaches, to open ocean, the region supports a great diversity of species year round.
In Queens, birds abound, with many amateur and professional ornithologists flocking to the Important Birding Area (IBA) of Port Joli and Kejimkujik Seaside. Home to a national and provincial park and a migratory bird sanctuary, St. Catherine's River Road provides viewpoints across the tidal mudflats, white sand beaches and freshwater brooks. The endangered Piping Plover (pictured above) can be found on beaches in this area - please respect signed nesting areas and nest enclosures. The beach is closed during nesting season.
Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site, inland, offers an abundant diversity of bird life as well. Find boreal species in softwood forests, warblers and other southern species in hardwood forests. Let the owls and loons lull you to sleep as you camp near the lake.
Golfers love the course at Queens County's White Point Beach Resort. This oceanside course is described by many as the most picturesque golf course in Atlantic Canada with its panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean. The sixty-acre course is CPGA rated and is open from early April until the end of October. If the weather cooperates, this course has been known to stay open well into November. For more information, visit the Golf Club's web page and check out this video above.
There are plenty of places to hide in Queens. Hide Geocaches that is. The uninitiated in Queens walk by them every day, but those armed with the right map and a handy little GPS unit can find these hidden treasures all over the county. Many coordinates and information can be found on www.geocaching.com. Type in the postal code or town name in the "Browse" search bar and a list of nearby caches will appear. This is a wonderful way to spice up a walk with the kids or add a new dimension to your trip! If you are visiting the area and don't have a unit handy, you can borrow one from the Region of Queens Recreation Department. You can reserve it by calling 902-354-5741 (Monday - Friday). Remember to bring some pins or small souvenirs from home to leave at the geocache locations!
Savour the outdoors and experience Mother Nature at her best while fishing in the lakes and rivers of Queens. Whether you are an experienced angler or just a beginner, an enjoyable experience awaits.
Smallmouth bass fishing is a popular family pastime on a variety of accessible lakes and rivers. South Shore Bassmasters host popular tournaments regularly throughout the summer and novice fishers are always welcome.
In general, most freshwater fishing seasons run from April 1 to September 30 for all species, except sea-run salmon. Speckled, rainbow and brown trout, white and yellow perch, landlocked salmon, smallmouth bass and chain pickerel are to be found in lakes and rivers in the area. From January 1 to March 31 there is winter rainbow trout fishing in Hidden Hills Lake located in the Labelle area. Year round Chain Pickerel fishing is available in Louis Lake in the Port Joli area.
Fishing licenses can be obtained from many convenience stores, Home Hardware in Liverpool, and the Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources office. For more information, please contact the Department of Natural Resources at 902-354-3462. You can also consult the Nova Scotia Angler's Handbook.
The Atlantic coastline of Nova Scotia offers a wonderful surf setting and the shoreline of Queens County is no exception. With a multitude of points, reefs and beach breaks the local surf community welcomes surfers from afar. Late August through to mid November is the best time of year for surfing when one considers water temperature and wave activity. Existing retail infrastructure and seaside surf gear rentals support this growing tourism niche. In addition surf clinics and camps hosted by local businesses provide the opportunity for beginners to be introduced to this fast growing sport. Check out Magic Seaweed for the Nova Scotia surf forecast. The YouTube video above was created by a local enthusiast and you can see more of their videos here: Thrumylookingglass
People have been navigating the waters in Queens for thousands of years. Follow the wake of the Mi'kmaq ancestors and paddle the Mersey River, once their highway between the interior and the sea. Pretend you are a sport being led by a local Guide in the spirit of the Tent Dwellers. As the author of the book remarked, you will find your soul here and the journey will be worthwhile! Below are different routes for you to enjoy. Please remember, safety first!