Gros Morne Mountain

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Distance: 16km roundtrip
Elevation gain: 806m
Rating: Difficult
Location: Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland

As the second highest mountain in Newfound, hiking Gros Morne Mountain is no joke, but it is well worth the challenge. I visited Newfoundland back in July 2018 and Gros Morne Mountain was easily one of the highlights from my trip.

The timing of our visit to Gros Morne National Park coincided with the opening of the trail for the summer season. It is usually closed during the spring from May 1 until the last Friday in June to protect the wildlife. When we had a nice window in terms of the weather, we took the opportunity to summit Gros Morne Mountain.

The first 4km of the hike winds through a forest to the base of the mountain. The path is relatively straightforward and there were a number of built-in steps to warm you up for the main event. See that snow patch up in the mountain in the below picture? That’s where the path leads to next. Cool.

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At the base of the mountain the trail breaks off into two paths that eventually loop back together. It’s recommended to ascend via the boulder gully (where that snow patch is in the above picture) and return back through Ferry Gulch.

There’s a sign where the paths diverges and cautions hikers against summiting in inclement weather. There are no markers on the next stretch of the path, which would make having to navigate through this heap of rocks super challenging with reduced visibility. At this sign it’s also advisable to turn around if you don’t have 4 to 6 hours of daylight left to complete this section of the trail.

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The gully was easily the most challenging section of the hike. It’s pretty much a solid 500m of vertical climbing through a pile of loose and unstable rocks for about a kilometre or so. And since we were hiking the trail early in the season we even got to navigate through a large snow patch, which put an interesting spin on things. We were definitely doing some slippin’ and slidin’ while scrambling through the snow. It was unavoidable.

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Soon after reaching the peak of the gully it’s a short hike up to the marker for the summit. 806m. No big deal.

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From the summit sign there are a number of markers to help navigate through the barren wasteland of rocks and stunted vegetation up on the peak. The trail leisurely descends down the other side of the mountain through Ferry Gulch and provides sweeping vistas of the Long Range Mountains and the Ten Mile Pond fjord.

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On our journey down the mountain we came across a moose. For hearing so much about the overabundance of moose in Newfoundland, and in Gros Morne in particular, you’d think I’d come across one sooner. I’ll take what I can get. Especially since this was the one and only moose we saw on our entire trip.

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The descent down, while significantly easier than the climb up, was lengthy and almost entirely in the sun. We were happy to reach the base of the mountain as the remaining 4km of the trail winds through a forest, providing ample shadows to cling to.

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We started our hike up Gros Morne Mountain at 8:15a.m and finished at around 3:30p.m. Needless to say, I slept very well that night.

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To read more about my adventures in Gros Morne National Park, click here

15 thoughts on “Gros Morne Mountain

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Thanks! Hiking up Gros Morne Mountain was quite the challenge, but was well worth the effort. I hope you enjoyed your time in Gros Morne as much as I did. It’s unbelievable how different the landscape is in the north vs south part of the park.

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    • WanderingCanadians says:

      The funny thing is that when I went to Newfoundland I somehow felt like I wasn’t in Canada anymore. I think it’s because the people in Newfoundland are so different than anywhere else in Canada: they are easy-going, quirky, hospitable, and have such a funny sense of humour. And let’s not forget about those accents!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. bernieLynne says:

    Great hike and photos. We only had 4 days tacked onto a work trip for my husband so didn’t get that far but we will go back and it’s on the list.
    You were lucky it was open and with good weather!!

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    • WanderingCanadians says:

      I would love to go back to Newfoundland one day too. I was there for ten days and still felt that wasn’t nearly enough time. The hiking and just walking around in general is fantastic. I was very happy that our visit coincided with the opening of the Gros Morne Mountain trail and that the weather cooperated. I can’t imagine what it would be like to hike that in the rain or fog.

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  2. ourcrossings says:

    Wow, your photos and your hiking adventures look absolutely amazing! Only recently I’ve stumbled upon the Gros Morne National Park and were absolutely amazed by the beauty of it. Would love to travel to Newfoundland and see floating icebergs and puffins. Thanks for sharing and happy trails 😊 Aiva

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    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Gros Morne is easily one of my favourite national parks in Canada. The hiking and scenery in Newfoundland is fantastic. The people are so warm and welcoming. I unfortunately didn’t see any icebergs. But I did get to see the puffins!

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