Nova Scotia - White Hill
You might think that the highest point in all of Nova Scotia, located in the scenic Cape Breton Highlands and in the center of a well-visited National Park, would be a prominent, famous, and popular peak. You would at least expect a well-marked hiking trail to the summit, perhaps crowded on weekends with families and dogs, and with interpretive signs at the trailhead or even at the top. Well, if that is what you thought, then White Hill is almost the exact opposite of that picture.
|· A remote bump covered with low scrub
|532 m, 1,745 f
|46°42’ 00”N - 60° 36’ 00”
|Cheticamp River 11 K/10 1:50,000
|Summer or early Fall
|Cape Breton Highlands National Park
|CAPITAL: Halifax, Nova Scotia
PROVINCIAL FLOWER: Mayflower
PROVINCIAL BIRD: Osprey
PROVINCIAL TREE: Red Spruce
The highest point in Nova Scotia is at White Hill Lake in Victoria County, and is part of the Cape Breton Highlands National Park. It stands 530 metres above sea level and is 17 kilometres west of Ingonish.
It is an extremely remote, lonely, low bump on a marshy, barren, windswept upland about 20 km/13 mi from the nearest road and 10 km/6 mi from any maintained hiking trails.
Recommend the Lake of the Islands trail - you can camp at the lake, and the next day make it to the summit, and maybe even return that afternoon. I climbed White Hill as a 42 km/26 mile one-day hike via the Lake of the Islands.
Go to Cape Breton Highlands National Park. One suggestion is to access the hill from the south via logging roads and by traversing around the eastern shore of Cheticamp Lake - an area out of National Park jurisdiction. Or do White Hill via the Lake of Islands.
The first section to the Lake of Islands campsite is relatively straightforward. The path is a highway amongst trails and 90% of it can be done on mountain bike.
Route to White Hill via Cheticamp Lake to the south. The lake can be accessed by a logging road which starts around Wreck Cove off the Cabot Trail. A general store is supposed to exist at the entrance. The road ends at the south end of Cheticamp Lake. From this point, one will have to bushwhack to the north east end of this huge lake to find a trail which leads to the White Hill junction. The terrain will be extremely wet and at least 2 rivers will have to be crossed. A former Ranger cabin can be found just outside of the park boundary on the trail. This would make a good place to rest for the night.