The Old Mail Road trail is located at the northern tip of Gros Morne National Park, near the town of Cow Head. The trail begins at the Shallow Bay day use area. This short hike follows the old winter mail route that was traveled by dog teams up until the middle of the last century. It is a short hike, at just 4km return, but it takes you through coastal tuck-a-more forest with a dense interlocked tree cover and across beautiful white rolling sand dunes.
The entire length of the trail runs parallel to the ocean and Shallow Bay is noted as one of the best ocean swimming locations in the province. Belldown’s Island, just offshore is a protected Arctic Tern nesting site and during the summer thousands of these acrobatic birds can be seen hunting for fish in the clear shallow waters of Shallow Bay. Fox, moose, and snowshoe hares are common sights along the trail.
The best way to enjoy this route is to hike to the end of the trail at Slants (Stanford) River and return along the beautiful sandy shoreline to the day use area.
from Port aux Basques ferry. Follow TCH east to Deer Lake. Take route 430, also known as the Viking Trail and follow it to Cow Head. (4 Hour Drive)
There is a regional airport located in Deer lake (1 1/2 hour drive)
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