If you are from Quebec the name Coaticook probably sounds familiar to you. If you’re trying to remember where you’ve seen that name before, think back to the last time that you were browsing the aisles at your grocery store. That is because Coaticook is the name of one of the most famous ice cream brands in the province and can be found in virtually every grocery store in the area but did you know that besides ice cream, Coaticook is also known for being the home of North America’s longest suspended pedestrian bride. If you’re not too scared of heights or suffer from vertigo, the bridge can be visited through the Parc de la Gorge found in the center of Coaticook which has become one of the most popular tourist attractions in the Eastern Townships region.
The bridge spans 170 meters and helps visitors get across the 50 meter deep gorge that can be found below. Besides the bridge, the gorge is one of the focal points of the park and has quite the history. During the melting of the last glacial period over 50,000 years ago, a glacier created a lake which shrank over time into a river known today as the Coaticook river. This river runs through the gorge and has been doing so for thousands of years causing erosion which in turn created the gorge. Since the river still runs through the same spot over and over again, the gorge is actually getting deeper each year and deepens about 0.1 inches every year.
The Parc de la Gorge covers over 600 acres of land and offers not only stunning views and a great place for a day trip, they also have an abundance of activities to offer in both the summer and winter. In the summer guests can enjoy hiking through the 20 kilometers worth of trails in the park, mountain biking, camping, visiting the mini farm, and going up in one of the two observation towers that can be found in the park to enjoy spectacular, panoramic views of the surrounding Appalachian mountains. In the snowy, winter months there is never a dull moment either with activities such as ice climbing and ice skating being offered.
Another unique feature that is a must see when visiting the park is the multimedia experience known as Foresta Lumina. Visitors from all over the province and even from out of the country make the trip to this incredible activity each summer and sees guests walking along illuminated paths in the woods and through the gorge all the while following along with the story.
For more information regarding the Parc de la Gorge as well as the activities offered be sure to visit the park’s website here.