The Frontenac Arch Biosphere Network

Follow Us

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • RSS

North Edge of the Arch Loop: Westport-Perth (72km)

Trail information: 

This route, starting ending in Westport with a rest stop in Perth, is a moderate length but challenging route. The loop explores the rugged northeast corner of the Arch - granite hills and sheltered lakes for most of the distance, and shorter stretches into and out of Perth on a gentler landscape on the Ordovician sandstone flats of the St. Lawrence lowlands that flank the Frontenac Arch.

The route can be started in either Westport or Perth, and done in either direction.  Regardless of direction, there is a big climb out of Westport or fast downhill run into Westport!

Westport is a small but bustling village at the west end of Rideau Lake, popular year ‘round. Spring through fall the streets downtown are busy, so after a visit to a café such as Cottage Country Coffee of the Tangled Garden to start the day, part at the Westport Community Centre at the corner of Spring St. and County Rd. 42. Then, ride the short distance north on Cty. Rd. 42 and just past the Catholic school, turn left/west onto Bedford St./Cty. Rd. 12 for about 100 metres, and turn right onto Cty. Rd. 36.

Shortly, you’ll cross the small bridge at the east end of Westport Sand Lake and begin the climb up the granite ridge on Cty. Rd. 36. For the next 10KM, this road wanders northward through forests and farmland, past wetlands and occasional country homes. It’s a peaceful ride on a paved road, but without paved shoulders – and so be aware of following traffic.

Turn right/northeast on Cty. Rd. 6/Althorpe Rd. Like 36, there are no paved shoulders. The road meanders through valleys, up and down over granite ridges, through forest and wetlands until about half way along this road to Perth, you come out onto flatter land with farm fields replacing the forest scenery. At about this same time, at a broad S turn, the road names change from Althorpe Rd. to Christie Lake Rd. – but it’s still Cty. Rd. 6. The more level ride continues into Perth, where the road name changes again to become Sunset Blvd. A right turn on Wilson St. and then a jog left onto Gore St. takes you downtown.

Perth is a very pleasant, well-kept, historic and friendly town, where you’ll find cafes and restaurants to refuel after this first half of the ride. Explore the shops and museums!

Leaving Perth, ride south on Gore St. to the edge of town, turning right on Cty. Rd. 10/Scotch Line at the Shell gas station. In the same way as you rode off the granite landscape of the Frontenac Arch onto the sandstone plane into farmland, on this return to Westport you ride off farmland and into the forests and wetlands once again. The straight Scotch Line begins its wandering through the terrain of the Arch.

Before you get to Westport, and the final steep downhill into the village, take a detour off to the left into Foley Mountain Conservation Area. A few hundred metres in is a parking area for the Spy Rock Lookout – one of the FAB Amazing Places. It’s a quick walk to the view from the cliffs over Westport, over Rideau Lake, and for kilometers down to Frontenac Arch. Read the story of Spy Rock at visitamazingplaces.ca

Back to Cty. Rd. 10, and a test for your brakes you’ll be back to Westport’s downtown – with great places to relax, and stay.

Start Location: 

As shown, Westport, although Perth is an equally good starting point.

Terrain: 

Challenging hills and a big climb out of Westport (in either direction).

Distance: 
71.5 km
Bike Suitability: 

All paved roads - suitable for road, touring or hybrid bike.

Notes and Cautions: 

There are no paved shoulders, and the roads have many a winding turn – be aware of following and converging traffic.

This route, starting ending ending in Westport with a rest stop in Perth, is a moderate length but challenging route.  

The route explores the rugged northeast corner of the Arch -- full of granite hills and lakes for most of the distance, centred on Westport.  The shorter stretches into and out of Perth provide a gentler landscape on the Ordivician flats of the St. Lawrence lowlands.

The route can be started in either Westport or Perth, and done in either direction.  Regardless of direction, there is a big climb out of Westport!

© 2017 Frontenac Arch Biosphere. All Rights Reserved.