Yarmouth, Nova Scotia

Ellenwood Park

Ellenwood Park is a Provincial Picnic park located on Lake Ellenwood. There are facilities for camping but it is also a great place for picnicking, hiking and swimming (supervised). Plan to spend a leisurely day in these magnificent surroundings.

Ellenwood Lake Provincial Park is located in the heart of Yarmouth County, approximately 19 kilometers (12 miles) north-east of Yarmouth. The 114-hectare (282-acre) park is bordered by Ellenwood and Agard Lakes, and offers a variety of outdoor activities including hiking, fishing, canoeing, swimming, picnicking and camping.

Table of Contents

Landscape Development
Coastal Plain Flora
Aquatic Life
Area Attractions
How to Reach the Park
Information & Regulations


The landscape of the park and its surroundings, like all of south-western Nova Scotia, has been modified by glaciers. As these glaciers ploughed and scraped across the land they created a relatively flat surface. The eroded material was deposited as glacial features such as eskers (sand, gravel, or cobble deposits formed into ling, narrow ridges) and drumlins (oval-shaped hills composed of glacial till). Glacial deposits also blocked the flow of rivers and streams, creating numerous lakes such as Ellenwood Lake.

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Ellenwood Lake Provincial Park is dominated by a mixed forest of Red Spruce, Balsam Fir, Red Maple and White Birch. The lakeshore hosts several plant species belonging to Nova Scotia's Coastal Plain flora.

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Coastal Plain flora is a plant community living along the coastal margin of the eastern seaboard form Florida to Massachusetts. During the last ice age which ended approximately 10,000 years ago, world sea levels dropped as much as 70 meters (230 feet) because tremendous quantities of water were locked in the extensive ice sheets. Large areas of the continental shelf off Nova Scotia were exposed, and with its numerous ponds, sandy or peaty soils, and river banks, provided suitable areas for colonization by many southern coastal plants. Later, as the glaciers retreated, some coastal plain flora became established in south-western Nova Scotia where they reached the northern limit of their range. The Coastal Plain flora in Nova Scotia later became isolated from their more southerly ranges when glacial meltwaters caused sea levels to rise, submerging the continental shelf once again. Pink Coreopsis, Plymouth Gentian and Water Pennywort are examples of Coastal Plain flora that live in Nova Scotia. South-western Nova Scotia harbours the only Canadian representatives of the first two species. For some of the coastal Plain plants, the Nova Scotian representations are a substantial proportion of the remaining world population. Efforts to protect the natural habitat of the Coastal Plain flora have led to establishments of Nova Scotia's first Nature Reserve, located on the Tusket River, Yarmouth County. In addition to the rare species, a variety of plants grow within the reserve and include Blue-eyed Grass and Water Goldenrod.

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Ellenwood Lake is part of the Annis River System. The tan colour of the lake is picked up as the river flows through numerous bogs. Despite its relatively acid nature this warm shallow lake is rich in plant and animal life, including some invertebrates (snails and arthropods) relatively rare in Canada. Ellenwood Lake also supports healthy populations of Brown and Speckled Trout, Chain Pickerel, Yellow and White Perch and Atlantic Salmon.

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Ellenwood Lake Provincial Park offers an 82-site campground with a central washroom and showers, playground, group picnic shelter and trailer dump station. Several picnic areas, a boat launch, supervised swimming and hiking trail are also provided. The campground is open from mid-May until early September while the day-use area remains open until mid-October. Although officially closed for the remainder of the season, and no facilities or services are provided, visitors are still invited to use the park.

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In August, Yarmouth hosts Seafest, a festival including rum running races, parades and entertainment. Throughout summer and fall, Yarmouth also hosts several kite flying contests. The Firefighters Museum of Nova Scotia, in Yarmouth, features a collection of equipment and machines illustration the history of fire fighting in the province. Also in Yarmouth, the Yarmouth County Museum contains exhibits and artifacts concerning local history. The Tusket Courthouse, the oldest standing courthouse in Canada, is now a museum. There are several other provincial parks in the Ellenwood Lake area. Port Maitland Beach and Mavillette Beach, provide opportunities for unsupervised swimming. Smuggler's Cove Provincial Park in Meteghan is a picturesque picnic park overlooking ocean cliffs. Glenwood Provincial Park, just off highway 103 at Glenwood, offers a quiet picnic area on Rickers Lake. An interpretive trail at Chebogue Meadows near Brooklyn, features a variety of wildlife habitat found within the interior of southwest Nova Scotia. The lakes and rivers of Yarmouth County are also popular with canoeists and fishermen. If you plan to fish a license is required. For more information on these and other events, consult the Nova Scotia Travel Guide or visit any local tourist bureau.

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Ellenwood Lake Provincial Park is located just 19 kilometers (12 miles) northeast of Yarmouth and 1.6 kilometers (1 mile) south of Deerfield. To reach the park take Exit 34 off of Highway 101, proceed 6.5 kilometers (4.1 miles) along Route 340, and follow signs to the park entrance.A SPECIAL MESSAGE TO PARK VISITORS Enjoy your visit to Ellenwood Lake Provincial Park but remember: if future generations are to enjoy the park as you have, it must remain unspoiled. Please help to preserve and protect this beautiful Park.

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The staff of Nova Scotia Provincial Parks is faced with the task of protecting and preserving the natural environment while ensuring that the visitors enjoy their stay. To meet these objectives, there are a few simple regulations which we must enforce at all times. These regulations are summarized from the Provincial Parks Act and Regulations. A detailed copy of this act is displayed in the administration building of each provincial park.



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PRICES (1996)

Reservations are not required, to get more information or to find out about the availability of sites at Ellenwood, please call there or at the Yarmouth County Tourist Association (742-5355) or E-mail the YCTA at "" or the Yarmouth Tourist Bureau (742-6639).

For Additional Information:



From the Dept. of Nat. Res. Brochure - Ellenwood Lake Provincial Park

Glenwood Picnic Park

This is a Provincial Picnic Park and has well maintained grounds, eating areas, etc. This is a quiet spot, albeit just off a busy highway, and is nestled by a gently flowing river. The best way to get there is to follow Route #3 to Glenwood, but if you want to spend less time driving and more time relaxing, you can take Highway #103 and watch for exit signs as you near Exit #32.

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