At Mer Bleue, in south-eastern Ottawa, you can cross-country ski on these trails:
- Trails 50, 51 and 52 — 12.8 kilometres of ski trails that wind their way through a forest on a sandy ridge.
- Trails 53 and 53A — 6.7 kilometres of ski trails, which offer an extended ski from the boardwalk trail.
- Dewberry Trail — This 1-kilometre ski loop is located on the Dolman Ridge.
Washrooms There are outhouses at the P20, P21 and P22 parking lots.
Parking Free, year-round parking is available at the P20, P21, P22 and P23 parking lots.
At Mer Bleue you will find interpretive boardwalks, sand ridges, cross-country ski trails and forests. Mer Bleue is the largest bog and natural area in Canada’s Capital Region and the second-largest bog in southern Ontario.
A northern boreal landscape
Mer Bleue provides a unique opportunity to see a northern boreal landscape located within minutes of a large city. This 7,700-year-old bog provides habitat for many species of regionally rare and significant plants, birds and other wildlife. It also supports plant and wildlife populations that are typical of northern boreal bogs.
For more info on the history of the Mer Bleue Bog download this PDF.
The Mer Bleue Bog plays an important part in stabilizing the climate. It is one of the most studied bogs in the world. A permanent research station at the centre of the bog measures the amount of carbon dioxide and methane that is released by the wetland. For more information, read about the Peatland Carbon Study.
Mer Bleue is recognized in Canada and abroad under the following designations:
- a wetland of international importance under the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands
- a provincially significant wetland
- a provincially significant life and earth science area of natural and scientific interest
Things to do at Mer Bleue
With more than 20 kilometres of trails, Mer Bleue offers plenty of opportunities for hiking, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. You can take a self-guided tour along the Mer Bleue Bog Trail, a 1.2 km interpretive boardwalk. Photography and bird watching are also popular activities at Mer Bleue.
There are outhouses by trail 51 and the Mer Bleue Bog Trail.
Free, year-round parking is available at the P20, P21, P22 and P23 parking lots.
There are unsheltered picnic areas at the P20 and P21 parking lots and a sheltered picnic area by the Mer Bleue Bog Trail, at the P22 parking lot.
The Mer Bleue Bog Trail has a boardwalk that is universally accessible.