The East Coast Trail Guide offers maps, photos, and a detailed description of the entire East Coast Trail, including Spout Path.
Curious? Have a look at the free sample chapter available on iBooks.
Please don’t confuse the East Coast Trail Guide with the basic maps and trail descriptions that have always been available on this blog; those will remain available right here:
Spout Path runs from Shoal Bay to Bay Bulls.
Check the map for the following details:
- The trail is 17.2 km in length, excluding the 6.3 km access trail.
- The north trailhead is on the coast at the end of a 6.3 km access trail called Shoal Bay Road.
- The south trailhead is on the coast at the end of Gunridge Road in Bay Bulls.
- Hiking in from the Goulds over Shoal Bay Road, the hike is 23.5 km long.
- Hiking in from Petty Harbour over beautiful Motion Path, the hike is 30.7 km long.
- Get a bird’s eye view of Spout Path with Bing Maps.
- In winter, take the overland snowshoe route to the Spout.
The quoted 17.2 km length of this trail can be a bit confusing as it only counts the distance hiked from trailhead to trailhead. Because the Shoal Bay trailhead is located on the coast where there is no parking area, Spout Path hikers are actually looking at a 23.5 km or 30.7 km hike, as mentioned above.
Hikers that want to see the entire trail are advised to start from the Goulds using Shoal Bay Road, but overnight campers and experienced hikers may well opt for the whopping 30.7 km option which includes all of Motion Path.
Starting from the north trailhead, the first few kilometres of Spout Path are the easiest, and not just because your legs are still fresh. Near the start there’s a group of beautiful waterfalls at the end of Queens River, flowing over a broad rocky ledge before dropping into the ocean. This spot is a good place to keep an eye out for otters.
Continuing south the trail bed is mostly soft and elevation changes are minor, yet frequent. From Long Point you’ll catch your first glimpse of the Spout, the attraction this path is most famous for.
Frequently called a geyser, the Spout is actually a ‘blowhole’. Anyone fit enough should really go the distance and have a look at it, you’ll find it’s especially impressive in spring and fall when the runoff and rain enhances the blowhole’s effect. Just south of the Spout you’ll find the official campsite at Little Bald Head, if you plan on staying here please carry out your trash.
A little further south still there are a couple of truly remarkable sea stacks and waterfalls at Sea Stack Cove. Beyond that point comes the long and weary forest stretch from Drop Cove to Turn of Bald Head, a beautiful but difficult part of the trail that will test your ankles and knees with its uneven trail bed.
Be sure to take a break at Freshwater, where if you’re feeling adventurous you can carefully make your way down the ledge that lets Freshwater River flow into the cove like a waterslide.
After the Bull Head Light the trail turns the corner towards Bay Bulls, skirting Useless Bay and bringing you all the way to the south trailhead at Gunridge Road.
Scenic spots on Spout Path:
- The Spout, this sea-driven freshwater blowhole is the top attraction on the East Coast Trail.
- Impressive rock spires will awe you in both Sea Stack Cove and Drop Cove.
- Waterfalls abound all along the trail, some drop directly into the ocean while others flow over the cliffs first.
Berries you can find on Spout Path include blackberries, blueberries, partridgeberries, cranberries, bakeapples, crackerberries and creeping snowberries.
Photos and stories featuring Spout Path:
- Coastal exploration of Spout Path - August 2016
- Camping on the East Coast Trail - May 2016
- Snowshoe to the Spout - January 2016
- A fantastic hike on Spout Path - September 2015
- How to get to the Spout - May 2014
- Spring snowshoe to the Spout - April 2014
- Too much snow to walk in - January 2014
- Boat trip & Picnic - September 2013
- A foggy day on Spout Path - July 2013
- Spring-busy - April 2013
- Snowshoeing to the Spout - January 2013
- September whale watching - September 2012
- Spout at Columbine Point - September 2012
- The Mighty Spout - June 2012
- Hot day on Spout Path - May 2012
- Snowshoeing on Spout Path - February 2012
- Spout Path on Bing Maps - May 2011
- May 2-4 on Spout Path - May 2011
- The Landing Place on Spout Path - May 2011
- A hike to Drop Cove on Spout Path - May 2011
- First hike to the Spout - April 2011
- 5 x East Coast Trail - June 2010
- Bay Bulls Bergs - May 2009