Adventure, Outdoor, Park, trails and beaches

The hidden gems of St. Adolphe Friendship Trail

Maintained by volunteers who are passionate about nature, the Friendship Trail in St. Adolphe is a charming destination that is very popular with hikers. A trail that lives up to its name!

The Friendship Trail in St. Adolphe began in 2020 with the efforts of a handful of senior volunteers who were helping clean up garbage from the riverbank and establish some driftwood bird feeding stations. Little did they know, the Friendship Trail would transform into a full-fledged trail system with artistic features, picnic areas, and river lookout points with benches and seating. Gerry Lagasse, Henriette, and Richard Collette were the masterminds behind this beautiful asset. Their committee has since grown to include Bill Gibson, and Diane Delorme, and other seniors.  

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A trail maintained by nature enthusiasts 

The charm of the Friendship Trail is its quiet location along the riverbanks of the Red River and its natural features. During the clean-up period, the seniors took the stumps and driftwood that they found and started to build artistic features along the trail including benches and tabletops, firepits, and play features for kids. The Friendship Trail entrance sign welcomes visitors and wood piled neatly by the firepits invites families to gather with wiener roasts and hot chocolate. Further along the trail visitors can find the perfect little nook called the Portrait Studio, and a peaceful lookout point.  

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Families with children especially appreciate Flintstone Park which features a Flintstone car (unfortunately, the original one was lost during the spring flood- it floated down the river), a play structure, wooden games, and teeter-totters that were built from trees that had fallen along the trailThe Troll Bridge takes visitors further down the trail where visitors can follow the trail closest to another lookout point that showcases two antique chairs that were donated and reinforced. Upon the entry sign, visitors can also take a left-hand turn along the trail and follow the south leg, known as the Red River Trail, which features Eagles Point/Riverbend Pont overlooking the river to the south.   

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A friendly, family-friendly trail 

The Friendship Trail has become a destination for birthday parties, wedding photos, school gatherings, and social gatherings.  The Friendship Trail is also home to 45 birdhouses donated and decorated by the St Adolphe Day Care. Installed by the Trail Committee, local children like to bring their parents to show off their works of art.  

Donations and volunteer hours help to keep the trail maintained. Spring waters can cover the trails so it is best to avoid them during the spring thaw. Once the waters recede, clean-up begins and the trail comes back to life.  

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The trail is a great location to visit in all seasons. The busiest times are spring (after the thaw) and fall, and in the winter, the trail comes alive with Christmas trees, opportunities for children to pick up, decorate, and bring back birch ornaments and tobogganing galore. The trail has also become a gathering place for National Truth and Reconciliation Day in partnership with programming offered by the St. Adolphe Metis Local. The trail committee also takes pride in feeding the birds in the region with donated bird seed and pumpkins for the deer following Halloween.  

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A popular destination for hikers 

The trail’s recent addition includes interpretive signage that visitors know about the local flora and fauna in the region and an extended section of the trail is being developed further south. The Trail Committee never thought that this trail would morph into what it is today. Now with the whole town behind it, visitors using it as a destination for nature walks, and continued support from naturalist groups like CPAWS, the future of the trail continues” one foot in front of the other”. Don’t forget to be on the lookout for the Big Foot House.  

The Friendship Trail is located in the town of St. Adolphe, at the intersection of Main Street and Road 210.


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