Mer Bleue Boardwalk

by Sara

I have been visiting the Mer Bleue Boardwalk since I was the same age that the firefighter is now.  I have a lot of wonderful memories of wandering the boardwalk with my family.

A bog is is an ecosystem that is most commonly found in the Arctic rather than the Ottawa Valley.  My boys are fascinated by the deep dark water underneath the boardwalk and the spongy peat moss surrounding the trails.  If you want to learn more about bogs and the Mer Bleue Ecosystem, visit the NCC website dedicated to the bog.

There are several trails in the NCC conversation area where the Mer Bleue boardwalk is located.  We like the 1.2 km long boardwalk trail because it is short enough for the boys to walk on their own and there is a lot to see (it is also stroller-friendly).  My boys like all the flowers and plants that line the sides of the boardwalk and the 'funny' shaped trees.  There is a large beaver dam and you can walk through the forest where the beaver's gnaw down the trees.  Last year over the course of a month we visited once a week and watched the progressive destruction of several large trees. 

Each time they try to spot the trails the moose use in among the tall reeds. Our oldest also likes to find the trails the beaver's have left behind in the forest. There is a variety of birds and we once narrowly missed seeing one of the moose that lives in the surrounding forest. 

The boardwalk is beautiful at this time of year. Many of the leaves are starting to change colours and its a wonderful spot for photos. The walk usually takes us about an hour and there is a sheltered picnic area (and an outhouse) at the beginning of the trail (the same place it also ends).

There is free parking but the lot fills up quickly on the weekends. If you can, head our first thing in the morning or late in the afternoon. The boardwalk is less crowded and you can take your time wandering the trail.