Travel planning: Backcountry Camping in Keji

By yogie, on Wed, 5 Feb 2014 | 0 Comments

It's been too long since we have been to Nova Scotia. Although we have been visitors many times, we still love to come back. There are still so many places we didn't visit and so many things we'd still love to do!

One of these things is going backcountry camping and hiking at Keji.

If you live in Nova Scotia, you might think "why didn't they 'just do it'"? The reason is simple: the amount of luggage you can bring is limited when you travel via air. Just two pieces and each one can be only 23 kilo (50 pounds) in weight. So how do we bring our own tent, cooker, dishes, cooking pots, pans, boxes to store food, sleeping bag, mattresses and all the things I didn't list? You know, all the stuff that you squeeze into the trunk of your car?

So we either have to rent all that gear locally or buy and sell it again before we leave. Or you have to find alternatives. We could try sleeping outside under a tree or the canopy and hope it won't start raining. Did I mention that we will be back in September/October? So it might already be too cold for sleeping outdoors without a tent.

It's a challenge when you're on the opposite side of the Atlantic and need to find locations where you can get all the gear you need. We've already learned we can rent a canoe at Jakes Landing in Kejimkujik National Park. While doing some research on the Parks Canada website, we learned that Keji now offers luxury tents and there are backcountry cabins available. You have to get in contact with the park staff to get more information, but it's an alternative to a tent and we can add a check mark next to that on our list.

As we plan our visit, here's the list of items and essential gear we still have to organize:

  • A topographical map such as the Kejimkujik's Backcountry Guide which is available at the Visitor Centre. So this is not really a challenge to get. We will also have a GPS unit which is a good additional tool, but doesn't take the place of a map and compass.
  • Drinking water or water purification (tablets, pump filters).
  • An axe to make kindling from the firewood provided on your site
  • A portable camp stove for cooking.
  • Waterproof matches and fuel for your stove.
  • Pots and cutlery etc.
  • Sleeping bag and mattresses.
  • Waterproof boxes for food storage with a rope to hang it into the trees

Of course we'll need several layers of clothing and some additional spare (dry) clothes in a waterproof bag. But this is something we've already planned to bring with us, of course.

So maybe you have some suggestions for international travellers looking to try backcountry camping in Nova Scotia. We'd appreciate your help! Simply leave a comment here please.