Walking in French River on Pioneer Trail to Lac Barbotte Lookout — An Autumn Afternoon Walk in French River

Access has been opened for walking in French River. Only a several minutes’ drive from Noëlville, an old logging road turned ATV trail on crown land has been transformed by the French River Multi Use Trail Association, now made suitable for hikers, horseback riders, and cyclists, too. *

Fall colours seen at Lac Barbotte while walking in French River.

Signs indicate where Pioneer Trail begins on Mayer Road, and there’s sufficient space to park a few vehicles beside the trail head, or lots more on the side of the road.

The trail is wider and clearer than we usually like — one of the downfalls of the multi use system being that main trails cannot, by necessity, be kept natural.

But walking in French River is beautiful nonetheless. From the trail head, it’s not long before reaching a viewpoint and boat launch at Lac Clair, marked by a large fire pit.

Just before the trail skirts the southern edge of Lac Barbotte, a side trail restricted to non-motorised use veers to the right towards the lake.

These side trails make walking in French River all that much nicer. A short walk on a narrower trail with rocks and roots left intact culminates at a large lookout site on the shores of Lac Barbotte.

The day warm, the sun bright, the sky clean and blue, and the autumn colours uplifting — beautiful! We had a lovely time walking in French River on Pioneer Trail to Lac Barbotte Lookout.

Baby snake seen while walking in French River on Pioneer Trail to Lac Barbotte Lookout
And for wildlife on this day, a baby snake. We don’t usually touch wildlife, but we moved this little guy off the trail since we could hear some quads coming behind us. Better to be gently manhandled a little than squished and flattened, I think.

* Trail permits include a map of the area’s multi-use trails. More info is available from the French River Multi Use Trail Association.

More Info on Walking in French River


2 Thoughts on “Walking in French River on Pioneer Trail to Lac Barbotte Lookout

  1. Dan Gani:

    There’s boat house in that bay at the pt.
    Here the wolfs howl at night from there that’s my place northern lights shine from there luv the sun sets amazeing I keep that boat
    house standing 50 years thx for sharing Pict send some back thx too the ministry some campers were leaving there trailer boat all summer ever since they put up the Sign too take out what u bring in when u leave has done a lot of good already thank you

    1. Yep, I agree that things go better when they’re well organised. As much as it would be nice for people to do the right thing on their own, I suppose rules help… Lol