The annual Summer Solstice Indigenous Festival Pow Wow will be held this coming weekend in Vincent Massey Park. I went last year and it was fantastic! For those thinking of biking to the Pow Wow, here is a route that starts at the Gathering-Ring, an art installation on the Ottawa side of the Portage Bridge, just off the bike path. This route is almost entirely along multi-use pathways.
From the Gathering-Ring we headed north a short distance before turning off to the right down onto the Ottawa River Pathway that circles under the Portage Bridge. On either side of the wide underpass a group of artists have just completed a series of large paintings in honour of National Indigenous Peoples Day that takes place annually on June 21st.
A short distance further along the pathway there is another wide underpass. An exhibit of large photographic reproductions of works by indigenous artists from across the country are on display along the walls of the underpass.
The path continues past the Mill restaurant, then crosses Booth Street and follows the edge of the Ottawa River.
Just beyond the War Museum there is an interpretive display describing the river as a vital travel route for Indigenous peoples and others that followed.
We then turned off the Ottawa River Pathway onto the Trillium Pathway and headed south, all the way to Prince of Wales Drive.
The section of the Trillium Pathway between Carling and Prince of Wales Drive is gravel or dirt, however there are plans to have it paved.
UPDATE – Fall 2018 – This section has been paved – YAH!
We turned right along Prince Of Wales to get to the lights that cross over into the Arboretum. There is a bike lane along Prince of Wales, but the painted lines along this section are so worn out as to be indiscernible. We hugged the old exit lane to the no longer existing Sir John Carling Building.
Once safely across Prince of Wales Drive we followed the stone dust path through the Arboretum, then up along the paved pathway to the Hartwell Locks.
We pushed out bikes across the top set of locks, carrying our bikes up and down the three steps on either side.
We then followed the Rideau Canal Pathway all the way to Mooney’s Bay.
The path circles up along Hog’s Back Road and heads across the bridge over the Hogs Back Falls. Once on the other side we turned right onto the Rideau River Eastern Pathway that circles back under Hog’s Back Road.
The Rideau River Pathway meanders a bit before heading down a long hill, flattening out just as it passes under Heron Road, and winding up in Vincent Massey Park on the other side.
The site of the Pow Wow is just of the path.
Et voila. Have a great Pow Wow!