The Port Bickerton Lighthouse walking trails system is made up of seven trails totaling about 3 1/2 km through a unique range of coastal terrain. We suggest that hikers wear either a hiking or running shoes. The trails are maintained by a dedicated group of volunteers and open to the public From July 1st through the end of September each year. During the remaining months the trails are not maintained but still open to the public although about 300 feet of boardwalk along Lovitt’s Nature Walk maybe removed for seasonal maintenance. A trail map can be found on the south side of the old pump house and trail guides are available online or at the interpretive center.
- O’Hara’s Loop
- Kaiser’s Walk
- Taylor’s Loop
- Beiswanger’s Trail
- Budge’s Trail
- Lovitt’s Nature Walk
- Lowe’s Trail
O’Hara’s Loop is dedicated to Theodore & Hattie O’Hara, Port Bickerton’s very first lighthouse keepers (1901 to 1931). O’Hara’s Loop begins from its intersection with Budge’s Trail and follows along the northern shore of Barachois Shoal towards the southeastern-most point of the park at Barachois Head. The path then loops back north and westward to its starting point at the intersection. Along this ½ km trail you will find an outstanding panoramic view of the Atlantic Ocean on one side and Barachois Cove on the other. Both bodies host a variety of water fowl.
Kaiser’s Walk is named after Calvin & Frances Kaiser, second keepers at the site and first to occupy the second Lighthouse (1932 to 1937). The second Lighthouse currently houses the Nova Scotia Lighthouse Interpretive Centre. Kaiser Walk is an outstanding boardwalk crossing a fresh water bog that runs from the end of Lovitt’s Nature Walk and Port Bickerton Beach. Although only ¼ km in length, it crosses through a botanist dream of wild orchids, pitcher plants, cranberry, bake apple and much more
Taylor’s Loop, named for Harvey & Annie Taylor, third keepers (1937 to 1940), follows a ½ km path beginning on a gravel bar where Lovitt’s Nature Walk meets Kaiser’s Walk. It leads through mature forest between Port Bickerton Beach on one side and Barachois Cove, reaching the easternmost point of the park before looping back to its point of origin. Along this trail, several varieties of seabirds can be found, such as cormorants, scooters, loons, & eiders. Binoculars are recommended!
Beiswanger’s Trail honours the Beiswanger Family, Irving & Catherine (1940 to 1956) and Harold & Eileen (1956 to 1961). This ½ km trail starts in the lower parking lot and wanders along the northeastern shore, providing a view of Port Bickerton Bay and the village of Port Bickerton beyond. It follows the coastline up to the Interpretive Centre.
Budge’s Trail is named after Fred and Edith Budge, keepers of the light (1960 to 1977) during the transition to the third Port Bickerton Lighthouse. The Budge’s were also first family to live in the newly-built lighthouse keeper’s cottage. Budge’s Trail begins just east of the operational third lighthouse and follows the shoreline east. Keep an eye open for seals and diving birds like gannets and terns. The trail continues to the junction with O’Hara’s Loop, then turns northward into forest past the unique “Initial Rock” and onwards along the southern edge of Barachois Cove before emerging from the woods behind the cottage. Total trail length is ¾ km.
Lovitt’s Nature Walk
Named after Lighthouse keepers Lamont & Betty Lovitt (1977 to 1982), Lovitt’s Nature Walk starts from the Lighthouse road midway between the lower parking lot and the Interpretive Centre and runs for ¾ km through forest and marsh along the north shore of Barachois Cove until reaching the junction with Kaiser’s Walk and Taylor’s Loop. Along this ¾ km trail, you will find numerous reference panels, describing local flora such as wild rose, beach pea, pinkweed and more.
Lowe’s Trail is named for our final lighthouse keepers Hector & Dorothy Lowe (1983 to 1988). Lowe’s Trail begins from the Lighthouse road just above the lower parking lot and wanders for 1 km through a varied landscape which changes from forest to an open boggy area known locally as the “Fire Barren” and then back to forest before ending at Port Bickerton Beach. The long sand beach itself curves along the coastline for more than a kilometer and offers a peaceful stroll to watch shore birds feeding and the occasional seal sunning. The beach is also popular with surfers.