Explore Meech Creek Valley and Philippe Lake by Taking a Free Shuttle

Detailed schedule
Chelsea Quebec Local logo
by The Local
May 30, 2024
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Photo credits:
N.C.C.
Hop on the Philippe Lake shuttle and embark on a magical journey through Gatineau Park! Every weekend from spring to fall, the NCC, in partnership with Transcollines, offers free shuttle rides to Meech Creek Valley and Philippe Lake. This is an incredible opportunity to explore the serene landscapes and enjoy a day full of outdoor activities without the hassle of parking.

Start your day early by waking up at 7 am, packing some snacks, water, and sunscreen, and getting ready for a fun-filled adventure. Make your way to Montcalm Station or the Gatineau Park Visitor Centre by 8:30 am to catch the shuttle. The shuttle departs three times a day at 9:23 am, 11:23 am, and 5:50 pm, making it convenient to fit into your schedule.

Once you arrive at Philippe Lake around 10:25 am, you'll be greeted by the raw natural beauty that surrounds the area. The tranquil atmosphere and captivating views from the lakeshore are sure to keep you entertained for hours. After a quick change in one of the Philippe Lake changing rooms, head down to Breton Beach, where washrooms and outhouses are available for your convenience.

Set up your oasis on Breton Beach, a perfect spot for building sandcastles, reading a good book, or simply relaxing. While the official swimming season starts on June 14th, you can still enjoy the water by renting a kayak, canoe, or stand-up paddleboard. It’s an excellent way to experience the lake and find peace on the water.

Around 1 pm, it's time for lunch. Breton Beach offers charcoal BBQs and picnic tables, making it easy to enjoy a tasty meal outdoors. Remember to clean up after yourself and take any extra food home to help keep the area pristine.

In the afternoon, take some time to observe the local wildlife. The area is an important habitat for various water birds and fish, and you might even spot the rare Gatineau tadpole snail, which is found only in this region. Ensuring you leave the area clean helps protect this unique ecosystem and its inhabitants.

As the day winds down, be mindful of the time. The last shuttle from Breton Beach departs at 4:49 pm, so make sure you don’t miss it. If you do, you'll need to find your own way out of Gatineau Park, but with services like Taxi Loyal available, you'll still have options.

The free shuttle service runs every Saturday and Sunday until October 27th, 2024, as well as on Victoria Day (Journée nationale des patriotes in Quebec) and Thanksgiving Monday. No reservations are required, but seating is limited and on a first-come, first-served basis.

For those requiring accessibility accommodations, Transcollines buses are not accessible to people with reduced mobility, but free paratransit is available with reservations made by noon on the Friday preceding the desired service. The Gatineau Park Visitor Centre is wheelchair accessible, and Breton Beach is partially wheelchair accessible.

Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a family looking for a fun outing, or simply someone seeking a peaceful retreat, the free shuttle to Meech Creek Valley and Philippe Lake offers a delightful escape into nature. Enjoy the scenic beauty, the recreational activities, and the tranquility of this beautiful part of Gatineau Park.

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