Pugwash Estuary, NS (Photo by NCC)

Pugwash Estuary, NS (Photo by NCC)

Pugwash Estuary, Nova Scotia

Most places under NCC's care welcome visitors. Please check site-specific pages on this website for access information and any special restrictions.

The Pugwash River Estuary is a mixture of forest and marsh bordering some of the most sought-after oceanfront property in Nova Scotia. Sheltering prime habitat for waterfowl — ranging from Canada geese to green-winged teals — Pugwash is truly a spectacular and valuable conservation area. Wind along the trail through mature and regenerating Acadian forest and skirt the edge of the salt marsh, where vistas across the estuary await. Interpretive panels along the trail provide information on the trail itself, the forest, the eel-grass and the waterfowl that rely on it, and the salt marsh ecosystem.

Trail length: 3.5-km loop
Hike difficulty: Easy
Amenities on-site: Parking available on neighbouring Friends of Pugwash Estuary property, and allowed by agreement, which give access to the trail. No shelters or benches.

Points of interest

  • There are raised puncheons (constructed log crossings) and short boardwalk sections to cross wet areas and a bridge to cross a narrow ravine.
  • Four interpretive signs are in place along the trail, the first providing general information about the estuary and a trail map.
  • The trail affords views of the saltmarsh and estuary.

Species you can look out for

  • eagle
  • osprey
  • double-crested cormorant
  • great blue heron
  • Canada goose
  • common and Barrow's goldeneye
  • black duck
  • red-breasted merganser


  1. Starting from Durham Street in the village of Pugwash, drive east on Highway #6 (Sunrise Trail) for approximately 2 kms.
  2. Turn right on Crowley Road, drive approximately 3 kms and look for a small sign on the right for Friends of the Pugwash Estuary, at 2169 Crowley Road.

Contact information


Learn more about Pugwash here >

All visitors to NCC properties do so at their own risk.

Visitor information

When visiting the property, please:

  • Respect the wildlife and other visitors.
  • Travel on designated paths only.
  • Ensure that all dogs are accompanied by their owner and controlled on a leash at all times.
  • Refrain from lighting fires or smoking.
  • Remove your own garbage, and please pick up after your pets.
  • Respect that the property does not permit the removal of any plants or animals.

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