Road Trip Across the Townships: Panoramic Sheds, Electric Bikes, and a Gold Mine!

Published on Jun 10, 2021

The Eastern Townships’ Haut-Saint-François region covers a vast wooded area with many places of memory and offers great possibilities for those looking for a road trip that is both active and contemplative. And that’s exactly what my Lover and I needed!

By Jessie Jolin

From Cookshire-Eaton to East Angus

It’s Friday, towards the end of the afternoon. Our bags are packed and the weekend has finally arrived! Our first stop takes us to Cookshire-Eaton and the Brasserie Rurale 11 Comtés. Here we stock up with a few of their beers: Pays de collines, Oxalis, Réserve des Étoiles, Bière d’Expo, Horizon des événements… I can’t wait to taste these lovely products!

The terrace of the microbrewery and the Cuisinier Déchaîné’s local cuisine wasn’t yet open for business while we were there and we had to get going. Too bad… The space seemed so inviting!

Fifteen minutes later (and after a mini photo moment by the John-Cook covered bridge), we’re standing in front of the Square Victoria Hotel House in East Angus. This is where we’ll be staying tonight. Arrivals are made autonomously in this lodging. So, we simply enter the code and that’s it, we’re in our room. Easy and practical, we like this! Although it’s more on the small side, but offers all the necessary amenities. We even have a small balcony where we opened a beer and enjoyed our own little happy hour.

Our evening was spent exploring the Parc des Deux-Rivières, nearby our accommodations. On these few kilometres of trails, we discovered our first out seven pavilions of the Panoramic Shed Circuit. Set above the junction of the two rivers, this shed offers a superb view overlooking the area and tells the story of the First Nations peoples who established themselves here. Such a Zen place!

On Our Way to Lingwick and Scotstown

Saturday morning. Our outing in the Haut-Saint-François continues as we head towards an old Scot stronghold, Lingwick. Two points of interest attract us here. First there’s the McVetty-McKenzie covered bridge, the Townships’ longest, where every year they hold the festival La nuit du pont couvert. Then there’s the Parc du Belvédère, where we discover another Panoramic Shed honouring the local Scottish and the French-Canadian communities. In Lingwick, during high-season weekends, you can also enjoy the brunch at La Ruée vers Gould Inn.

It’s late morning when we arrive at our next destination: the village of Scotstown. First, a quick stop at the Charcuterie Scotstown to fill our basket with some sausages, terrines and other fine charcuteries to garnish our lunchtime sandwiches. Then, we head to the Walter-McKenzie Park to experience what we believe will be the highlight of our stay: An electric bike outing!

Full Speed on the Bike Path

Before our eyes, the trees go by at a fast pace without us needing to make the slightest effort. We’re riding on the bicycle path of the Marécage-des-Scots regional park which links the village of Scotstown to the Franceville sector of the Parc National du Mont-Mégantic. We’re like a couple of kids on our electric bikes! We’re totally delighted! On the way, we stop by the Hampden Panoramic Shed and enjoy a small pause. We then push on inside the national park for lunch, before returning to our starting point. How many kilometres did we cover with our machines? About twenty kilometres, which seemed much too short!

Following the Trail of Chartierville’s Gold Miners

In the middle of the afternoon, we stop at our last destination for the day, the Centre d’Interprétation de la Mine d’Or de Chartierville. At the time of our visit, the centre’s activities weren’t yet accessible (including an initiation to the technique of panning for gold). However, we were still able to hike on the gold mine trail. This easy route covers about seven kilometres (out and back), and takes us along the Mining Brook, across a hanging footbridge, all the way to the old mine. This place had intrigued me for quite a while… My curiosity was finally satiated!

Already on Our Way Home

After this full day and an abundance of great memories, we were on our way back home. Just before we completed the loop of our itinerary, we made one last stop at the Cookshire-Eaton Panoramic Shed inside which we discovered an unusual swing to contemplate the farmlands all around.

So, my impressions about my trip to the Haut-Saint-François region? Very authentic and so relaxing!

Other points of Interest not to be missed in the Haut-Saint-François

  • The Weedon and Saint-Isidore-de-Cliffton panoramic sheds, the only two of the entire circuit we missed during our visit;
  • The Centre d’interprétation de la Côte Magnétique, explaining the phenomena of the magnetic hill between Chartierville and the Canada-U.S.A. border;
  • The Johnsville Bog and Forest Park and the peat bog which counts about 6 km of walking trails;
  • The Cookshire-Eaton Art Gallery and the Maison de la culture John-Henry Pope;
  • The P’tit Plaisir cheese factory in Weedon where I recommend you try their Fleur de Weedon, a semi-soft cheese with a hazelnut taste.

Jessie Jolin

I’m the content coordinator for Eastern Townships Tourism and an avid outdoors and sports enthusiast. Always on the lookout for new places and experiences, along with my Lover, we travel throughout the province and especially in the Eastern Townships, hoping to find the best places for playing outside. Follow me on my outdoor adventures!
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