†††† 370 hectare Duncanís Cove Nature Reserve is a coastal headland which extends to nearby Chebucto Head.† Parking and access is poor and unmarked due to lack of action by the province to accommodate the many visitors.† Respect the local residents by not clogging the road with parked cars and avoid private land (see official boundaries).†††
†††† Duncanís Cove is one of HRMís top coastal hikes, if not the best.† The astonishingly beautiful coastal barrens give way to rugged granite cliffs, pounded by the vast Atlantic Ocean surf.
†††† When gazing towards the ocean, youíre likely to see sun-bathing seals, coastal birds, and even distant whales on occasion.† The area is also busy with boats and shipping traffic.† Packing a pair of binoculars is wise.
†††† Late in summer is an ideal time to do this hike, as it is warmer and drier than the rest of the year. The cool ocean breeze can make temperatures significantly lower than the mainland. In spring and summer it takes on lots of colour as the green grass, flowers and blueberry bushes stretch as far as the eye can see (recommended read: Edible Plants of Eastern North America).† This large area of protected land and vast ocean view will have you struck by the scale of your surroundings any time of year.
†††† Itís† difficult to get lost due to the barren nature of the land and the easily identifiable foot paths. Due to sensitive nature of the environment you should stick to these paths and keep dogs on-leash as is the rule at all provincial parks unless otherwise posted.†
†††† Use extreme caution near the coastline and the later end of the trail where there are some dangerous drop-offs and tricky footing.† The trail is rugged and muddy in spots so proper footwear is a must.† Due to the unpredictable weather and trail conditions you should be properly prepared with the right gear.† Rapid changes in temperature, wind, sudden fog banks and unexpected precipitation are the norm along Nova Scotiaís coast.††
†††† In addition to the amazing natural landscape, there are two old crumbling WW2 era lookout stations along the way, and 2 light houses visible during the hike.† Total hiking time is about 3 hours or 8km (to the end and back) along the linear, coastline hugging trail.† I recommend giving yourself 4 hours to do this trip properly, because you are sure to make plenty of stops.
†††† †††††Blog: ďDuncanís CoveĒ.