“Wait a minute.” “Ummm, I don’t think we’re headed towards our rental cabin.” “Are we driving up the mountain?!?!” “Yup.” “Oh my god, unreal.” So much for hiking it. <the engine revs fiercely as we gun it on the dirt road to make the steep AF incline> It’s getting late, cell signal is spotty, and we’re on a dirt road headed straight up Mont Hereford.
Sooooo this is what happens when you are ridiculously chatty, not really looking at the directions, and just turn without thinking because you saw the sign say ‘Mont Hereford’.
The reality is that our amazing little rental cabin was on the other side of the mountain, and we were indeed driving straight up to the peak.
The Low Down
- Address: 557, chemin de Coaticook, East Hereford Quebec
- Cell Reception: None at the trailhead. Service at the peak.
- Trail Distance: 12kms
- Peak Elevation: 875m
- Elevation Gain: 600m
- Duration: 4-6 hrs to the peak and return dependent on fitness level.
- Dogs: Yes, on leash only.
- Crowds: Light traffic.
- Washrooms: Onsite at the parking lot.
- Entrance Fee: Free.
- Season: Open year round (except closed during hunting season).
- More Information: Visit the Forest Hereford, AllTrails, and Mont Experience Hereford for more info.
In Good Company
Our very own Capital City Explorer, Rosalyn, and I decided to escape city life for the calming effects of the Eastern Townships. Well, half way up the mountain road it wasn’t very calming. It was more thrilling, nothing like testing your little car’s limits. I mean really, at points the road was so steep that I near stalled the car twice and I’d like to think I’m pretty decent at driving the thing. Anywhoooo, we had a good laugh after we realized we turned on the wrong road. Like full on tears laughing. Spoiler alert: we did not hike the trail up to the summit.
What to bring
Besides the 10 essentials and what I would normally suggest for hikes, here are the highlights for this particular hike:
- All the bug spray: Thankfully it’s pretty much bug free during our late summer trip but the trails is overgrown in spots and bug spray is certainly recommended.
Parking and Trailhead
Besides the one trailhead from Mont Expérience Hereford there is also a parking lot for the main Mont Hereford trail. It’d oddly pretty with an abundance of flowers and a clear lot…something that Quebec certainly does right with her trails!
Neil-Tillotson Hiking Trail
Although we didn’t hike to the peak, we did hike a section of the trail to reach the waterfalls the next morning. The trail is well marked and narrow in sections. The diverse terrain and landscape makes it an interesting and beautiful hike. We departed from our cabin site at Mont Expérience Hereford a hiked approximately 2kms in to the ‘chutes donat’ (waterfalls).
It was dry as a bone. #wompwomp
Of course, it’s fall, and there is no doubt that it’s spectacular in the spring. Even Luskville is dry in late August. Actually, google it and see for yourself. It’s pretty impressive in its own right.
Certainly not a wasted hike though, we explored the river and peeked around the bend to see a water point flowing over the rocks. The perfect spot to take in the sites, smells, and sounds of the forest.
…and if you decide to hike the Neil-Tillotson trail keep in mind that wild flowers and wildlife are rich in the Eastern Townships, so chances are you’ll enjoy that part as much as reaching the summit.
Mont Hereford Peak
After we finished laughing, we poked around at the peak to see the views points. It was good but not jaw dropping. We had a funny feeling from seeing pictures online that the best views were actually along the hiking trail and in the winter. There are several lookout point listed along the trail. We passed a group of mountain bikers on the way up and it looks like it’d be a great trail to snowshoe in the winter. The lookout point always faces the right direction for a stunning sunset view.
Ladies and gentlemen, Mont Expérience Hereford met all our expectations and then some. An incredibly wonderful camp ground and cabins.
First, it’s only 20 mins from Coaticook on one lovely road that gives you a great view of the sun setting behind the mountains as you drive it. Actually all views while country driving are great in this area, but we especially enjoyed the sunset.
Secondly, the cabins and washroom facilities…woah guys, this was top notch. Very clean rental cabins (called ‘pods’) that come with a fire pit, BBQ, and indoor electrical fireplace. Oh and there’s a mini fridge – which was such a perk for the weekend! (So yes, there is electricity in the pods) There’s a small play structure for children in the centre of the camps. The clear. winner however was the single person pod washrooms. These were gold. I mean, how luxurious is it to have a water, toilet, and sink while camping?! Again, super clean. Super awesome.
Finally, amazing hosts. When we pulled up, Maryse was there at the main office. Take about having a warm and friendly welcome! She gave us area maps and loaded us up with a prepaid fire wood. She emailed us prior to arriving with additional information. Just good people, and we love good people.
Nourish Thy Self
These kind of weekends require food by the fire so we stopped at the IGA in Coaticook and stocked up. Meals were easy with the mini fridge, BBQ, and fire pit. To be honest, our weekend was so action packed that we only had two meals at the campground.
Wrapping it up
One of the highlights of the weekend adventure was staying at Mont Expérience Hereford hands down. It was in the right location to hit the trails, and side trips like Coaticook and St-Malo. Even though it makes for a great long weekend escape, next time I’d love to stay a little longer and thoroughly explore the area. There’s a lot that the Eastern Townships have to offer. Amazing what you discover in your own backyard non?