In July of this year I received an e-mail from Sarah Russell, telling me about a hiking trip her and her partner were planning, from St. John, to Fredericton, to Miramichi, and then into Nova Scotia or to the fundy coast. The full trip would be on foot and they wanted my advice on what trails and sites they should try to see on their journey. They also wanted to know where they might be able to stock up on supplies. I provided them with the following maps of the NB Trails:

They included links to other trails they might pass along the way.

The following is an email from Sarah giving a summary of their two month adventure:

Hi James,

Sarah and Andrew
Sarah and Andrew
Thanks again for being patient with me! We had an amazing trip & the routes you sent us were so helpful! So, to start out we walked through Saint John (in town) to get to Grand Bay. Once getting to Grand Bay the trail was really quite nice. A lot of the time we followed along the old highway as to stay close to anything in case we needed, but it was so beautiful! Once we reached Victoria Beach we hopped onto the old railway line & followed that for a while. We mixed up staying on the railway line at around Caton’s Island point & followed the water line until we reached a spot where there was an old bridge & no way to walk forward without swimming. We climbed up the embankment there & realized we could not pass the old bridge unless we hopped the fence Meanwhile we talked to a lady who lived there. She informed us that the land is/has been bought up by individual landowners & they are trying to stop anyone from passing through (mainly because of ATV’s I think). She was quite unhappy with us at first for being there, but was a little nicer once we chatted & showed us the way back to the highway.

Sunrise at Victoria Beach
Sunrise at Victoria Beach
We ended up staying at a Oak Point camp ground that night & jumped back on the old railway line after that. We followed the railway line until we ended up in a field close to Evandale. We jumped back on the highway at that point & followed it to Oromocto (we did some of the highway from Queenstown area to Oromocto on the big highway…not nearly as fun!) We took the trail & highway mixed to Fredericton. The trail from Oromocto marina was beautiful! I think that was the Deer Park area. Once we got the Fredericton we did the Salamanca trail & went through Marysville & through some sort of park which was very nice.

We stopped at most of the places for food that you pinpointed along the way from Fredericton to Miramichi. One of the drawbacks we had was we thought there would be more corner stores than there was. There’s the ones you mapped & that’s about it! We followed the old railway line from the end of Marysville which I guess is now an ATV trail. I was an amazingly beautiful walk, the only trouble I had personally was the rocks get quite big in some areas that with a heavy pack (mine was probably about 80lbs) it was a little tough on the ankles. It would be a problem at all for someone with a lighter pack I’m sure! We followed that the majority of the way until it crossed the highway & we followed the highway until Boiestown. From Boiestown to Doaktown we followed the highway because we got a little directionally confused but it was really quite nice as well, actually we followed the highway pretty well to Miramichi from that point. Once in Miramichi we saw Vye’s Lookout & walked the Strawberry Marsh Trail. We stayed there a couple days & then took the old highway as far as Bay du Vin.

Woodsmans Museum in Boiestown
Since we walked the old highway to Bay du Vin we walked the coastline & had great weather for it. We ended up making friends there & staying for about a week & had gone as far as Escuminac along the coastline. We then went down through the Kouchibouguac Park & stayed there about another week. I think we walked every trail in Kouchibouguac. The whole time we were on the trip we didn’t see many animals. We saw a fox once & birds, but no bears. It could have been the clanking pans on the outside of the bags! We went through St. Louis de Kent & then went & saw the Bouctouche Dunes boardwalk. Earlier in our trip we had been walking through the day but we quickly found walking with the huge packs & the dog was too much at peak temperature so we ended up doing our hiking earlier starting between 4-6am which was so peaceful. We stayed across from La Payes de la Sagouine on Acadian Day so there was all kinds of partying that night. We walked the old highway all the way to Shediac & met up with some family from Moncton there. We actually drove back to Moncton with them & a few days later started on the Dobson Trail. We followed the Dobson trail for a bit & actually met up with more family shortly before Fundy National Park. We ended up driving home with them.

Miramichi River
Miramichi River at Doaktown
All in all, the trip was amazing! It took us just shy of 2 months since we were staying a few extra days in a few places. The biggest thing that honestly struck us was the kindness of the people we talked to along the way. We had everything from people offering us water from their cars, inviting us into their homes, inviting us to swimming pools, letting us camp on their backyards & we even stayed for a week with a couple we met at their house & went to dinner parties & an island party. The hospitality was top notch & I just wanted to thank you so much for taking the time to give me all the info that you did. It was so helpful & led us to so many beautiful places & people. I hope some of the things I mentioned might help future inquiries & maybe our interview got you a few extra visitors on your site! Thanks & have a wonderful day,

Sarah, Andrew & Kramer 🙂

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