a peek inside the fishbowl

03 Sep, 2012

A family hike around Pink Lake in the Gatineau Hills

Posted by andrea tomkins in: - Ottawa for kids|Easy ways to make kids happy|Ottawa

September is my favourite time of year. The days are a little cooler but just as sunny and welcoming. Darkness starts to fall a little earlier, and throwing open the windows to let in the cool air makes for excellent sleeping. I wrap myself in a sweaters again and breathe deeply, freely.

I feel so much more energized in September, don’t you? It’s the best time to start new projects, recommit to old ones, and kick-start those familiar routines again.

September is also the best time for a family hike. Pink Lake in the Gatineau Hills is, in my esteem, pretty close to perfection. Let us count the ways:

1) It’s not a far drive from Ottawa.

2) It’s a relatively easy walk that is almost entirely groomed (and by that I mean there are man-made stairs instead of rocks to scamper up)…

Pink Lake, Gatineau

3) The trail goes in a tidy circle around the lake. It’s a comfort for those of us who fear getting lost in the wilderness. Not that anyone is nervous, nope, not here.

Nice lighting

4) There is some cool science going on here too (if you’re the kind of family who takes advantage of this kind of thing). The geology and er, lakeology (okay I made that word up) is pretty interesting. There are signs, stop and read them! I don’t think I’ll be giving anyway away by revealing it’s a meromictic lake. (Go look that up.) You will also find evidence of an old mica mine on site too:

Mica mine at Pink Lake, Gatineau

5) The views are stunning.

Pink Lake, Gatineau

Pink Lake, Gatineau

Pink Lake, Gatineau

Would you look at that riot of colour? Here’s an experimental panorama too (it’s best seen full screen).

We walked, we looked, we picnicked, and then we went home, happy to have rediscovered this little treasure.

Have you ever been to Pink Lake?

5 Responses to "A family hike around Pink Lake in the Gatineau Hills"

1 | Krista

September 4th, 2012 at 4:48 am


Pink Lake is one of my family’s favorite places to hike as well – you’ve really captured the beauty of it in your pictures.

2 | Cath

September 4th, 2012 at 8:21 am


We love Pink Lake. For younger kids we also like the sugarbush trail by the visitor centre, followed by a quick visit to the awesome exhibits inside!

3 | lacoop

September 4th, 2012 at 6:35 pm


When I was young we used to bike up to Pink Lake quite a lot. And then we would go swimming in it, because in those days there was no awareness of how sensitive the lake is. Great memories!

4 | BD Williams

September 9th, 2012 at 5:53 pm


Wow. I need to go up north more often.

5 | Pamela

September 17th, 2012 at 5:39 pm


Many times! Love it there.

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human offspring: Emma (24) and Sarah (22). During the day I work as a writer at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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