Paddling NB

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Exploring New Brunswick One Paddling Route at a Time

Keswick Island Route, Keswick River

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Diggity Stream to Palfrey Lake Route



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Quick Facts

Features stream, wetlands, lake
Access easy
Route Difficulty easy
Water Body Type stream, open lake
Current Type minimal
Route Type loop or linear
Route Distance 12.2 km return
Portage Distance 140 meters
Estimated Time 5 hrs 30 mins return
Elevation Change 2 meters
Scenery Rating beautiful
Cell Reception minimal
Fees none


Note that Spednic Lake is controlled by dams, which may impact water levls. Depending on water levels there may be more or less boulders just below the surface and poking out of the water.

I had been dreaming about this paddle for a long time, ever since I saw it from the lookout platform on the Boulderwalk Trail at Spednic Lake Provincial Park. The route starts along the meandering Diggity Stream. The stream is flanked on either side with wide grasslands. The current is slight. There are large beaver huts along the stream. You will also see Great Blue Heron hunting along the edge of the stream. There are lots of ducks and lily pads. When you get close to Spednic Lake you will see the lookout platform on the Boulderwalk Trail on the left. You may even get lucky and spot a bald eagle.

A beaver hut along Diggity Stream

The stream eventually narrows in and goes through a wooded area before flowing out into Spednic Lake. When entering the lake you will see the Diggity Campsite on the right. This campsite has a monument stating that it's been a camp site for thousands of years, back when this would have been a major travel corridor by indigenous people in the area.

Spednic Lake is a very rocky lake with lots of large boulders just under the surface. Keep an eye out so you don't lose too much paint or plastic off the bottom of your boat. You will also see lots of large boulders poking up out of the water along the shore. Continue along the shore keeping it on your right. When I got out far enough past a long point on the left, I looked back and saw people on the point who were hiking the Boulderwalk Trail.

Large boulder in Spednic Lake

Continue along the shore, passing by small islands that have camps on them. After passing Shooter's Gap (a narrow grassy patch of land separating Spednic Lake from Palfrey Lake), continue along the shore of Lower Palfrey Neck. Lower Palfrey Neck is a long peninsula that separates Spednic Lake and Palfrey Lake.

Round the tip of Lower Palfrey Neck into Palfrey Lake. From here you can see Palfrey Lake Lodge across the lake. Continue around the point and go back along the Palfrey Lake side of Lower Palfrey Neck. When you get to Shooter's Gap (the grassy area between the two lakes) you will need to get out and portage or drag your boat through the grass to get back to Spednic Lake. When back in Spednic Lake turn left and return the way you came.



Diggity Stream to Palfrey Stream Route


From McAdam drive west on route 4 for about 8 kilometres and turn right onto route 630 (If you come to the US border you have gone too far). Drive for 2 kilometres on route 630 and it becomes a gravel road. Just past this you will see the sign for Spednic Lake Provincial Park on the left. Continue past the park for another 2.5 kilometres and you will come to a bridge over Diggity Stream. Just past the bridge on the left is a wide area for parking.

Access to Diggity Stream
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Trail Last Hiked: October 7, 2021.

Page Last Updated: May 14, 2022.