(Originally posted june 9 2012) We hiked 8k within this coastal preserve, just before you reach Five Islands, Nova Scotia. You have two loop to choose from: Headlands & Economy.
Both are about equal distance and both offer great views of the Bay of Fundy. Note that the trails are maintained by two distinct groups and you might find that the trail conditions are not consistent. I would recommend doing the Headlands trail if you don’t want to do the full distance.
What you do get is a nice footpath along the cliffs, I would leave the pets at home for this one. There are a few spots where you can get to the ocean floor. Since this is the Bay of Fundy, time your visit at low tide and you won’t be sorry.
You can download the track files via Garmin Connect when I hiked the trails in 2012:
2021 Update Hike – Headlands Trail
I returned to Thomas Cove after a long 9 year gap. From the parking lot, it looks like some work may be planned as there was a large amount of gravel dumped, but still room for 8-9 vehicles. From my understanding, each trail is on different property owners and Headlands is the better maintained, it certainly was the nicer trail when I was there last time.
The first kilometre give you a chance to get a nice opening view before you start on the out & back portion of the trail. I observed a beautiful blue heron in the marsh area. The boardwalk segments were still in good shape with only a few boards looking a bit old.
Once you get to the footbridge you can now see most of the trail hiked so far. About 400m in you will get to the fork where you will see large evergreen cut and one piece looks like a bench. From here you can start the loop section of the trail. One thing I noticed was how much growth occurred along a segment where I remembered a barren forest section. Spruce and maple started to take over and will be a nice section in a few years.
The view point along the coast are still in pretty good shape but mid you that coastal erosion has been eating in and a reminder to keep your dogs leashed when getting around the higher portion of the loop.
Fall is my favorite time of year to hike and my hike was during peak fall foliage season. Blue skies and warm air, it is a great hike to do with a group.