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  • Bras d'Or Lake
  • , Hiking
  • , Outdoor Adventure

Hidden Gems – Salt Mountain & Iron Mountain Wilderness Adventure

Story by: Stacey Creech & Geoffrey Gillstrom

Nothing beats the thrill of conquering a new challenge, or in this case hiking a new mountain. Salt Mountain, located in Whycocomagh, provides you with 4 main trails, each with indescribable views. Join Stacey and Geoffrey on their Hidden Gems journey up Salt Mountain

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1. Hidden Gems—Whycocomagh

Our assignment for Destination Cape Breton’s Hidden Gems campaign was to travel to Whycocomagh, a rural community located in the central region of Cape Breton Island. Our goal was to hike Salt Mountain by day and enjoy an evening in the Iron Mountain Wilderness Cabins.


2. Salt Mountain

Located in Whycocomagh Provincial Park, parking for the Salt Mountain trail is located on the left-hand side when entering from the Trans-Canada Highway. The trail is broken up into 4 sections: The Highlander (Yellow), Salt Mountain Trail (Blue), Scout Trail (Red), and McQueen Trail (Green). The trails are all clearly marked with coloured arrows which guide you throughout the trek.


3. Highlanders Quest 

We ascended The Highlander, whose trailhead is located in the hiker’s parking lot. The climb is rocky, steep, and slippery. It meets up with the Salt Mountain Trail which loops around the mountain boasting 3 unforgettable look-offs over Bras d’Or Lake. Even though it was overcast, the views are absolutely stunning and showcase the scenic beauty of Whycocomagh Bay.


4. Wilderness Cabins—Explorers Only

Located a short drive from the park is Iron Mountain Wilderness Cabins. This is the ultimate place to unplug, plus the off-grid retreat runs on solar power. Your secluded personal cabin sleeps four and is equipped with a private picnic area, BBQ and fire pit. Washrooms are located nearby in the Main Lodge which houses Nova Scotia’s first Off-Grid Pub. Grant & Jessica are the inspiring hosts who pioneered this unique project by hand.

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5. The Great Trail 

Iron Mountain Wilderness Cabins provide access to The Great Trail. This is a 5k round-trip hike that is not to be missed. If you are looking for a less daunting adventure when visiting Salt Mountain, consider skipping The Highlander portion of the trail and entering and exiting the mountain via the campground.


Stacey Creech & Geoffrey Gillstrom | @cabottrailpathfinders

Geoffrey & Stacey, former Toronto DJ’s, love for travel, networking and photography brought them to Cape Breton Island in 2017 with the hope to live a sustainable lifestyle. Currently, they provided tours and share experiences to guide you on your Cabot Trail journey!

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