Walking on the Heather Trail in Manning Provincial Park - Canada

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We ask the owners of the B & B which is the most beautiful trail in Manning Provincial Park. No doubt they both say that the Heather Trail is the most beautiful. In the Netherlands we searched some walks in Manning Park and one of the walks was the Heather Trail. After a very good breakfast we get in the car and we go to the parking lot of the Heather Trail in Manning Provincial Park. The road up to the parking lot is the first 8 km paved and the last 8 km unpaved. But it is a very good gravel road, even campers can drive over it, so can we definitely can drive it with our midsize car.

We park our car in the upper parking lot at the start our walk on the Heather Trail. The walk is well signposted so we quickly find our way to the top of the First Brother. From the parking we first descend through beautiful woods about 150 meters down. Unfortunately, we have to hike up to the end of the walk on the Heather Trail. But sometimes in the mountains there is no other way than descending first. After the descent we walk through the open fields about 400 meters up.

The nature around the Heather Trail and Manning Provincial Park is really beautiful. We enjoy the flowers and insects that we see everywhere. Despite the end of September there is still much in flower. The distance, in combination with the height difference makes the walk fairly heavy. But the incredibly beautiful scenery makes up for the distance. We walk through the meadows further towards the First Brother. We like to walk to the top, which is the last part uphill for about 130 meters.

During our walk we notice that in a couple of minutes suddenly the weather changes. We have lunch at a place with a fantastic view of Manning Provincial Park. And we notice that both that wind is getting colder and harder begins to blow. We look at the side where the wind comes from and big thick dark clouds coming our way. We are familiar with weather changes in the mountains, and know that there is only one solution, walk back.

We decide to walk a bit further with a watch out for the weather. Just before we arrive to the path to First Brother, we see thick dark clouds. We did not planned to stay overnight and it is 8 km walk back. We turn around and leave the top of the First Brother for what it is. Usually we walk to the top for the view, but if it is in the clouds, the climb up has very little sense.

We walk the same trail back. We find the walk both very nice. Nature in Manning Provincial Park is incredibly beautiful. And Heather Trail is well maintained and is good for walking. We descend the 450 meters again and keep break at a campsite. Meanwhile there is a cheeky bird around us so he can eat the bread grains as soon as we leave. He is so brutal that he sits down on shoe Sandra. We have even left or the bird has been looking for the crumbs.

After a climb of 150 meters we are back in the parking lot of the Heather Trail. The weather is cleared and the wind has turned, maybe we could have walked to the top, but we wouldn’t want to get in any trouble. There is during this walk no food or drink available, so bring enough with yourselves.
It is possible to continue walking on the Heather Trail, but you have to stay overnight in one of the camping places. For a day trip is the top of the First Brother a nice end of the walk in Manning Provincial Park.

Length: 17 km
Height: 600 meters

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