Unlike a lot of people, I didn’t have any time off during this hectic times so with the current landscape I’ve been working on taking random day offs to have some breathing space instead of going on long vacations. The first day that I took was last Friday and it was given to doing a morning to early afternoon hike in the Eastern Townships.
This year’s main focus for hiking destination has been the Les Sentiers de l’Estrie hiking networks. We went to a closer area in the Bolton zone of the network and chose the Colline du Lac Trousers which is a 9km round-trip trail. The trail itself is a bit vague. It actually gives you the parking not the closest to Lac Trousers but actually on the Missisquoi-Nord trail which leads on to Lac Libbey in the first leg and walks a portion on a road before heading into another stretch of road for a quite a distance before turning into a road that leads to another trail to the final summit spot. The last leg has a constant upwards trek with the final 100m being mostly steep upwards climb up to the summit. That’s a quick rundown of how the trail works. I’ll have a detail description below. You can check out the details of the trail HERE.
This is the start of trail which is part of the Missisquoi-Nord trail. This picture is looking back at where we come from by the parking. The parking spot is actually down a road where you walk towards this park where its a Sentier Mise en Forme meant for workout stations along a trail. There’s a park and marshland at the beginning and its full of a lot of weeds and wild flowers. The first part of the Missisquoi-Nord towards Lac Libbey is fairly flat. If anything, the beginning portion is either flat or going downhill for most of it with very little uphill until it goes to Lac Libbey which is a fairly flat road by some very pretty houses. You can get a peek of Lac Libbey from afar. There should be a trail around Lac Libbey but we didn’t notice it. At the end of the road is the entrance to the next part of the trail.
Its also part of the Missisquoi-Nord trail for this portion to the next road area. In reality, there isn’t much of difference in the whole way. Missisquoi-Nord trail goes to the next road area where it changes to the orange trail of Les Sentiers de L’Estrie sector which is following a little left turn into a road. The next road around is actually fairly calm and a few houses along the way but mostly forest on both side. As you go into the next section, its the final trek upwards.
The final trek upwards is pretty much the last 100 meters or so if I remember correctly. It starts off like this with rocks as steps and gradually increases in steepness going up and up. You can tell that its a more narrow path with little paths between trees and rocks and such and needs a lot more attention even if they have two blue ropes aligning the trail all the way up for extra safety.
After that trek, we get to the summit. There was quite a few people there so in order to respect social distancing rules, we just slipped into the higher rocks to get the view and then we left. Although the trail in general is pretty much just wildflowers and weeds and tall grass and shrubs and trees and just this one viewpoint, the summit view is still rather pretty.
Overall, Colline du Lac Trousers was an average trail. It does fulfill the easy trail element but it also doesn’t have a whole lot to see since its one where its very much based on your own focus and patience for the one payoff of a beautiful scenery. If we knew that, we might have done the closer parking spot instead. The entire trail averages around 3 hours going and return but we did it in around 3.5 hours or so. Its definitely one of the longer trails we did this past year or so.