There are many trail options in the Wright's Creek Watershed located in East Royalty, Charlottetown. More detailed descriptions of the trails are given below. There is also a trail map download you may find useful to print and take along. And now you can paddle a canoe or small boat in Andrew's Pond!
Andrew's Pond North trails run along the sides of Andrew's Pond North and Barbour's Pond. There are observation decks and docks and many signs and displays about the history of the East Royalty area and the area's flora and fauna. There are about 1.5 Km of trails near water and another 0.5 Km of access trails.
Park at the ballfield on MacRae Drive and take the access trail down to Barbour's Pond. There is a play ground at the Malcom Darrach Centre, across MacRae Drive, for kids to play afterword.
Park beside the mailbox beside 66 Herbert Street. There are two parking spots off the street to the right of the mailbox. Carry your boat 50 meters down to the dock.
Beavers moved in in 2015. You will find the stumps of hundreds of trees that have been cut. The channel under the Beaver Bridge on the east side of Andrew's Pond was made by beavers. There is a nearby lodge. There is a large sign about beavers on the trail along the north side of the pond opposite this lodge. Beavers are best seen just after dawn or near dusk.
There are several observation decks on the edge of the pond. Displays highlight the history of the area and its wildlife. There are benches to sit and face each other and a bench facing the pond to fish from or enjoy the wildlife.
The trails are quite flat. The short access trails from Elena Court and St. Peters Road are more steep (5 to 10%), The flattest access is from MacRae Drive and Herbert Street.
Trails in the woods are mostly clay. In the open they are mostly crushed asphalt. Widths range from one to three meters. Bridges are one meter wide.
This trail runs along the old Belmont Road. Belmont was the name of the Wright farm and mill property in the 1800s
The trail starts from Westcomb Crescent between Northridge Parkway and Westridge Crescent and runs to Wright's Creek. The entrance is hidden to the right in the above picture. The trail is all on public land despite the fact that some residents have extended their back yards into the trail route.
Belmont Trail is in yellow. It connects to the East Royalty Trail running along Wright's Creek. The Belmont Road is now grown up in trees. It was used in the 1800s for access from the end of Kensington Road to the Hillsborough River, especially in winter, when horse and sleigh on the river ice was the main method to travel inland.
From Westcomb to Hunter Lane, the trail is a well used path in the woods. From Hunter Lane to Wright's Creek (above pictrue), it is a nice clay-surface trail with a very slight overall slope to the creek. The total length is 1.15 Km one way.
1.5 Km one way
The first 2/3rds of trail, was made by the PEI Housing Corporation in the late 1900s. The remaining trail was later made by the City. The trail and the large fields to the south are publicly owned by the PEI Housing Corporation. Prior to 1972, the property was owned by the Andrew, Wright and Cambridge families going back to 1787. In 2020, the PEI Housing Corporation extended the buffer zone along the creek to 60 meters from 15 meters to protect the creek from runoff from the sloping fields.
The trail runs 1.5 Km from Acadian Drive to St. Peters Road. It is one of Charlottetown's best kept secrets. Walk it at both low and high tides. You will see abundant wildlife year round. The trail is within or next to an original Acadian forest that has has never been cut except for very selective harvesting of mature spruce trees for lunber for use by the land owners for their own buildings.
The trail passes the mill site developed by John Cambridge, circa 1800. It was turned over to his som-in-law, George Wright, and daughter, Phoebe, to operate in 1807. It was later purchased from the Wright family by John B. Andrew in 1898 and is still owned by the Andrew family. The history of the mills and the Island's first brewery, which was on the site, is given in a display overlooking the mill site.
Also known as the old Landfill Trail
This is the view inland at high tide from the wooden bridge built in the 1970s to access the regional landfill being established on approximately 60 acres of land overlooking Wright's Creek. The landfill was closed in the 1980s. The bridge is a wonderful spot to enjoy the Hillsborough River, Wright's Creek, marine birds, and the many fish and shellfish, especially oysters, that inhabit the area. One can climb down to the water at the east end of the bridge. Please supervise your children.
This trail starts at the end of Acadian Drive and immediately crosses the wooden bridge, called by some as the Bird Island Bridge, after a former name of Wright's Creek. The trail continues along former landfill roads and is partly paved. The trail goes around the previously active part of the landfill, which is now fenced. One can continue through the Parkman Soccer Complex parking lot, through a small park and across on a paved path to Cambridge Drive and the end of Oakland Road.
There has been an osprey nest at the bridge for many years. They nest on a platform put up by Maritime Electric to keep the osprey off the nearby power lines. Displays on the bridge provide information on ospreys and also provide some of the area's history, ranging from pirate's treasure to an English country estate.
There are about 5 Km of mountain biking trails, and an access from Greenwood Avenue, in the light green area on the map,
A short walk in the woods
This entrance follows the original laneway to Belmont House built by George and Phoebe Wright in the 1830s. At the time it was considered to be the finest house on PEI. This laneway trail points directly toward Belmont House. The house is now five apartments surrounded by even larger apartment buildings.
The Royalty Oaks Natural Area is in the western corner of what was formerly the Cambridge/Wright/Andrew property from the late 1700s, 1800s and early 1900s. It is a mature Acadian forest designated as a protected natural area. Natural Area protection must remain in place unless the area is crown land and dedesignation is deemed to be in the public interest for use such as highway infrastructure.
This entrance is somewhat unkept but it leads to a wider trail. The two trails marked on the map are well used by local residents taking shortcuts through the woods. The property had many other trails that have not been kept up. In the 1930s there was a large fox ranch close to the western side of the property near the present Riverside Drive. The forest floor is relatively easy to walk on except near the edges where increased lighting allows lower bushes to grow.
The Wright's Creek area can be reached by a multipurpose trail and on-street bicycle routes from the Charlottetown end of the Confederation Trail. The link below shows more detail.
PANORAMIC VIEW OF THE ANDREW'S DAM AREA, GOING FROM THE MILL ROAD (LEFT) TO WRIGHT'S CREEK (RIGHT) 2012