Hiking Vacation

Gros Morne Explorer

The Gros Morne Explorer is an all-inclusive hiking vacation in one of Canada’s top hiking destinations, Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland. Experienced naturalist guides lead you on day hikes to explore Gros Morne Mountain’s Arctic alpine, the deep fjords of the Long Range Mountains, coastlines of pebble beaches and volcanic rocks, and the treeless Tableland’s mountain of mantle. Included in this week-long tour is an exploration of Bonne Bay by sea kayak and a boat cruise on Western Brook Pond Fjord.

We base our guests in comfortable and spacious cottages in Norris Point conveniently located just a few minute’s walk from Gros Morne Adventures waterfront office, the beach, aquarium and waterfront pub. Daytime temperatures are ideal for hiking, the trails are not crowded and at the end of each day we enjoy unique dining experiences at locally owned seaside restaurants.

Details

Departures:

  • June 25 – July 1, 2017
  • July 9 – 15, 2017 (FULL)
  • July 23 – 29, 2017
  • August 6 – 12, 2017 (Space for one female willing to share)
  • August 20 – 26, 2017
  • September 3 – 9, 2017
  • Custom departures can be arranged

Please note: The first day (Sunday) is an evening orientation only. The last day (Saturday) is the departure.

Land Cost:

$1995 CDN, Single Supplement $425 CDN.

Cost does not include tax.

Includes:

  • 6 nights accommodation
  • 5 full days of activity
  • all meals
  • ground transportation
  • airport (YDF) transfers
  • boat tour
  • sea kayaking
  • park pass
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Brief Itinerary

Day 1: Meet 6:30pm at Gros Morne Adventures, Norris Point for an evening orientation followed by a welcome dinner.

Day 2: Hike the treeless Tablelands and touch the earth’s mantle! This red mountain is home to rare plants, unusual rocks, and stunning vistas.

Day 3: Hike Gros Morne Mountain for stunning views of wild mountain plateaus, endless coastlines and deep fjords. Watch for woodland caribou, moose and rock ptarmigan.

Day 4: Explore Bonne Bay’s rich marine environment by sea kayak. In the afternoon cruise Western Brook, a massive 16km fjord lake hemmed in by 800m cliffs.

Day 5: Enjoy the Green Gardens coastal hike and explore a volcanic rock shoreline of sea stacks, pebble beaches, and wildflower meadows.

Day 6: The Lookout Hills rewards hikers with the finest panoramic view in Gros Morne National Park and the best chances to see moose in their natural habitat.

Day 7: After breakfast we return you to Deer Lake.

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Full Itinerary

The Gros Morne Explorer is based out of the coastal village of Norris Point nestled in the scenic fjord of Bonne Bay. We start each day with a hearty breakfast, prepare lunches and ready ourselves for an 8:30am departure. Hiking trails are all within an hour’s drive or a 20 minute water taxi ride. Our days are filled hiking to Arctic Alpine summits, exploring deep fjords, and discovering the earth’s mantle, returning home by about 5pm. Our day ends with great food experiences both indoors and out enjoying seaside picnics and quaint village restaurants.

Day 1
Arrival & Orientation.

Meet 6:30pm at Gros Morne Adventures waterfront office in Norris Point for an evening orientation followed by a welcome dinner. Accommodations in Norris Point.

Please note: Gros Morne Adventures provides a early and late afternoon free shuttle from Deer Lake Airport. If the free shuttle time is not convenient, taxi services are available from Deer Lake Airport. Contact our office for taxi company information.

Day 2
The Tablelands; 14km, moderate.

The Tablelands is an eerie, alien landscape that is a remnant of rock that once lay beneath the ancient Iapetus Ocean. A 4 hour hike along the shores of Trout River Pond Fjord explores this rocky terrain that is so unique from a geological and natural history perspective that it is a key component to Gros Morne National Park’s UNESCO World Heritage Site designation.

Mostly treeless because of the toxicity of the soil and the exposed landscape, trees that do survive are stunted and very old. The hiking trail passes through meadows, shrubby forest and then strikes out across the barren Tablelands for a stunning view of Trout River Pond Fjord. Accommodations, Norris Point.

Day 3
Gros Morne Mountain; 16km, challenging.

Hike to the highest point in the park, Gros Morne Mountain. This rigorous hike leads to the Arctic alpine wilderness of the Long Range Mountains. Rare vegetation clings to this barren landscape and hardy inhabitants like the Woodland Caribou, Moose, and Rock Ptarmigan are often seen.

Enjoy spectacular views overlooking the glacier-carved fjords of Bonne Bay and Ten Mile Pond. Plan on an 8-9 hour hike with an elevation gain of 806m. Accommodations, Norris Point.

Day 4
Sea Kayaking; 5-8km, easy. Western Brook Pond Fjord; 6km, easy.

Extending over 20 km inland from the Gulf of St. Lawrence is the sheltered fjord of Bonne Bay. Explore this rich marine environment by sea kayak. Minke whales, eagles, terns, mink, mergansers and kingfishers are common sightings on the bay throughout summer. Spectacular views of Gros Morne Mountain and the Tablelands can be enjoyed from the seat of a kayak.

In the afternoon we take the coastal lowland walk across bogs and limestone ridges to Western Brook Pond fjord, a spectacular freshwater lake hemmed in by 650m high rock walls. We join a boat tour to explore its 16km length and to see the spectacular waterfalls that tumble from the alpine plateau.  Accommodations, Norris Point.

Day 5
Green Gardens; 9 or 15km, moderate to challenging.

Today we explore the spectacular Green Gardens coastal trail. We cross an ancient ocean, traverse an Arctic alpine rock garden, and descend into a boreal forest valley of northern evergreens, songbirds, and moose. At the seacoast wide beaches with shallow rock pools, grassy meadows, rock pillars, ancient volcanic sea-stacks, and rugged cliffs unfold before you.

Enjoy a shore lunch, explore the beach and retrace our route back to the trail head (9km). For avid hikers, continue on the longer looped trail (15km) along the shoreline to the Wallace brook stream crossing and follow the undulating trail ascending 350m to the Trout River Gulch trailhead. Accommodations, Norris Point.

Day 6
Lookout Hills; 15km, moderate to challenging.

The Lookout Hills hike offers the best panoramic view of Gros Morne National Park. From this vantagepoint you can see the Tablelands, the coastal lowland, the Long Range Mountains, and Bonne Bay’s picturesque villages of Norris Point and Woody Point.

This is an off trail hike through forest, across alpine fens, and up rock ridges. Seeing other hikers on this route is a rarity! In addition to spectacular views moose, caribou, and ptarmigan are often seen.

We end a great week of adventure with a farewell dinner. Accommodations, Norris Point.

Day 7
Departure

After breakfast, we return you to Deer Lake Airport.

Itinerary Changes
Please keep in mind that weather may require us to change the scheduled itinerary of this hiking adventure. If we encounter high winds, fog and/or rain, we may alter the intended route and schedule to improve the tour and your experience.

Trip Rating
Moderate to challenging; 8-16km of hiking per day. Please refer to the daily descriptions for more detail.

Travel Arrangements
Airfare is not included in the price of your trip. We encourage you to contact your local travel agent or the airlines directly for any air arrangements you may need.

Reservations
Please fill out the online application form. You will be required to confirm your reservation with a deposit of $300.00 CDN per person. Visa, MasterCard or American Express accepted. The balance of the tour cost is due 60 days prior to the tour departure.

Accommodations
Accommodations are comfortable, spacious 1 and 2 bedroom cottages with full bath, kitchen and common room.

Meals/Menu
Your cottage is stocked with breakfast items including juice, milk, tea, coffee, cereal, bread and various spreads, fruit and yogurt. Lunch is an assortment of fruit, juice, sandwiches, vegetable snacks, and sweets. Evening meals are enjoyed at local restaurants and main course options are available. There’s plenty of food and our staff are always there to cater to your needs!

If you have any dietary restrictions it’s very important to inform us in advance in order to make the necessary arrangements.

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Equipment and Clothing

Required Gear and Clothing

  • Small daypack – will need to carry your lunch, water, extra clothing, camera, binoculars and rain gear.
  • Hiking boots – we recommend a light full leather hiking boot. If it rains your feet will get wet with the mesh style boots.
  • Sun hat with wide brim
  • Fleece hat & mitts (or gloves)
  • Lightweight polypropylene underwear (top & bottom) – may never need it but just in case we get a cold day
  • Fleece sweater – combination of a 100 & 200 weight works better that one heavy fleece
  • Long sleeve synthetic shirt – help prevents sunburn, roll-up sleeves if needed, & they dry quickly
  • T-shirts (100% cotton doesn’t dry quickly)
  • Hiking shorts – quick dry
  • Wind pants – quick dry
  • Rain pants and jacket (Gore-Tex or equivalent)
  • Hiking Socks (synthetic blend & polypropylene liners)
  • Handkerchief
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun block & lip balm
  • Insect repellent – generally isn’t a problem since we usually have a breeze. May want to take if you have any sensitivity to black flies and mosquitoes.
  • Medications (medications that would not be part of our standard first aid kit)
  • Blister Treatment – Moleskin, 2nd Skin, and Medicated Bandages (Compeed, Band Aid, etc.)
  • Water Bottles or Bladder (2 litres minimum) with a holder for easy access

Optional Gear & Clothing

  • Gaiters – nice to have on the Big Lookout hike (off-trail) but not necessary
  • Small pad to sit on at lunch – the ground can be damp
  • Camera, film/card & batteries
  • Binoculars
  • Pocket knife
  • Small notepad and pencil
  • Swimsuit
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Hiking poles

Coastal hiking – be prepared for rapid weather change!

  • Cottons are cold when wet and take considerable time to dry. We strongly recommend wearing polyester blend garments that will dry quickly.
  • Hikers will be expected to carry, at a minimum, in their daypack– a rain jacket and pants, fleece/wool top, lunch, and 2 litres of water. Water should be easily accessed (placed on the outside of your pack in a pocket or attachable pouch), hydration is extremely important!

Please do not hesitate to call our office if you have questions pertaining to clothing – the right clothing will add to the enjoyment of your hiking adventure!

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    Hiking in Gros Morne Video