Along the headland areas experience beautiful coastal views of Newman Sound and Sandy Cove.
This trail meanders along boreal forest and interesting cliff ledges. A portion of this trail was once an old road that lead to a school house shared by both Sandy Cove and Happy Adventure. Hikers can extend this walk by following the trail back to Happy Adventure and walking around that picturesque community or by walking through the town of Sandy Cove to the beach area and lookout.
|Length||2KM (round trip)|
|Difficulty||Easy to Moderate|
|Expected time||1-2 Hours|
What to Expect
This is an easy trail and suitable for children and less experienced hikers. Exercise caution when hiking over bedrock and mosses as they may be slippery, especially when wet.
Be aware of cliff ledges that may be undermined and please stay on the designated path
The Old Schoolhouse Trail is accessible from three locations: in Sandy Cove access is along Barbour Avenue or off Greening’s Point access road. In Happy Adventure access is at the junction of Plant Road and Harbour View Road. The best access to this trail is via Tom King Blvd in Sandy Cove where parking is provided at Crooked Tree Park, a short community walk away from the Trailhead. There is another entrance located in Happy Adventure (just up from the fish plant); however, there is no parking lot provided at this entrance.
There are a couple of ways to extend this hike: 1) from the parking lot (at Crooked Tree Park), cross over Tom King Blvd to Down Below Road and take the steps down to Sandy Cove Beach, one of the province’s most recognizable and popular beaches. Follow the beach to the end, Capelin Gulch, and take the stair case up to Barbour Avenue and go left to connect to the trail. Or take at the Old Schoolhouse Road portion of the trail (near the petting farm) and walk to the town of Happy Adventure. Explore this picturesque community before returning to the trail and walking back to the parking lot.
The trail takes you along the headland and reveals some amazing vistas of Newman Sound. Along this trail you will also travel through an old growth forest, picking your way around the rock faces and large boulders covered in moss. It might feel like you have discovered Tolkien’s Middle Earth. There is a set of steps that will take you out of or bring you into the forest depending on which direction you choose to walk the trail. In addition to the loop there is a branch of the trail that runs out to Greenings Point (located at the end of Greenings Point access road); hike this section and take in a different view of Sandy Cove – looking straight down at Sandy Cove Beach and across the bay to Sandy Cove Head Lookout. Please note there is NO access to the beach from here.
There are a number of lookouts located along this trail. The trail will branch off in a couple of locations, leading out to lookouts. The lookout at Greenings Point in particular is worth the visit; it will give you a different view of Sandy Cove Beach and Sandy Cove Head.
In Sandy Cove, parking is provided at the Crooked Tree Park parking lot off of Tom King Blvd., across from the Down Below Road. There is no formal parking location in Happy Adventure.
Seabirds and whales can be seen where the trail hugs the coast: humpback, minke and finback whales and dolphins would most likely be seen from the headlands. In the thick of the forest, rabbits, moose, bear (in season!) can be seen along the trail.
The Town of Sandy Cove was first settled in the mid-1800’s. The lack of an unsheltered harbour meant that a local fishery was not viable, however many of the originally settlers played an important role in the Labrador Fishery. Today the Town of Sandy Cove is extremely popular during the summer months with locals and tourists flocking to the famous Sandy Cove Beach and local Crooked Tree Park.
This trail primarily follows the headland and takes you through an old growth boreal forest. The closest beach is Sandy Cove beach, from the parking lot you can walk or drive down Barbour Avenue and follow the steps down to Sandy Cove Beach.
Old growth fir forest, many of Newfoundland’s wild plants can be spotted along the trail (in-season).
Although the bedrock of the Eastport Peninsula is mostly sedimentary, roughly 400 million years ago this was an area of active volcanoes in the Appalachian mountain chain. Glacial activity removed much of the soil and over time these mountains were eroded to create the large hills found in this area today. The beautiful sandy beaches found at Sandy Cove and Eastport were formed by outwash deltas.