Martin Head Trail
|Estimated Time||45 minutes|
|Surface Type||beach, forested|
|Elevation Change||44 meters|
|Features||island, tides, beach|
|Trail Markers||none but easy to follow|
|Maintenance Rating||well maintained|
Martin Head is an absolutely amazing landscape with exceptional views of the Fundy coastline. A very large, long gravel bar juts out into the Bay of Fundy, ending at a sort of island. Another long bar reaches out from the end of Goose Creek Road to form a sort of T split by Quiddy River. Quiddy River flows into a floodplain next to the gravel bar. At high tide the floodplain fills with water along with the somewhat protected marsh behind the bars.
Martin Head rises from the end of the bar and is covered with trees. The side facing the coast is a steady slope that takes you up to a small field at the top of a cliff. There are several lesser used trails that travel along the perimeter of the island. They access many views up and down the rugged coast. On the side trails you will find a grave and what's left of the cement basement and chimney of a lighthouse.
If you walk on the beach to the right as you approach Martin Head you will see cliffs as you come around the corner. One of the cliffs looks like a face. The face looks like Martin, who I assume was a resident of the small town that used to exist on the hill overlooking the island.
If you walk back towards the coast, away from Martin Head on the gravel bar, you will find fossilized sand dunes. These ancient sand dunes jut out of the beach and are unmistakable. For more information go to Fundy Biosphere Reserve - Fossilized Sand Dunes. When walking back the other gravel bar towards Goose Creek Road you will see another strange orange thing jutting out into the wetland. On closer inspection by a side trail we realized this was an old sawdust pile. As mentioned above this was the site of a small town about 100 years ago.
Martin Head can be accessed from the Fundy Park to Quiddy River section of the Fundy Footpath. The Footpath follows along the Goose Creek Road near the beach at Martin Head and crosses it on the hill.
The Goose Creek Road can be used to directly access the beach at Martin Head. Just after leaving the north gate of Fundy Park on Route 114 turn left onto Shepody Road. The road is gravel but it is a main woods road so is usually in pretty good shape. Travel on this road for just over 11 km and then turn left onto a side road. This is Goose Creek Road and after 16 km it will take you to the beach at Martin Head. The road gets progressively more rough. You can get to within about 2-3 km of the beach in a car if you drive slow and are careful. You will need an off road vehicle with some clearance to get all the way to the beach.
Note that the construction of the Fundy Trail Parkway extension over the next few years will roughly follow the road from Fundy Park. The directions to get to Martin Head may change during this construction period.