Stumbling upon a hidden gem is like finding something rare and abstruse, devoid of damage. Visiting the Lusk Cave is just like finding a hidden gem; you want to absorb the feeling, take a mental snap shot of the wonder of nature, and then bask in the full glory of experiencing such raw joy at finding something so precious and beautiful. For me, exploring Lusk cave was like hugging nature, and willfully experiencing effortless joy. I still can’t put my experience into words but I’ll try.

Our journey began from the city of Ottawa, where we eventually crossed the bridge that merges Ontario to Quebec and we immediately followed Autoroute 5 N to our destination. On this scenic route, we passed by Morrison’s Quarry in the little but quaint town of Wakefield amongst other things. Upon getting to Wakefield, we casually decided to grab a power meal from a restaurant called Le Hibou on 757 Chemin Riverside in Wakefield. For everyone that has been to Wakefield or is willing to visit this town, you probably already have heard of the restaurant called Le Hibou but if you haven’t, and you decide to visit it in the Summer, ask for a patio seat, bask in the summer air, enjoy the beautiful and picturesque lake and mountain view, and then look though the menu and order the beet and black bean burger with no expectations. One of the best meals I have ever had in my entire life is that burger and it tasted like heaven, with every bite releasing fireworks in my taste buds.

Once we fuelled our bellies, we got in the car and continued the drive to Parent beach located on 300 Chemin du Lac-Philippe, Philippe Lake, Saint-Cécile-de-Masham, where we began our 10km round trip hike to and from the cave on trail 50 & 54.

Once we hiked the 5km distance from our starting point to the entrance of the cave, we were simply overcome with jitters of unthinkable excitement of what was yet to come, and as soon as we descended into the cave, we simply became wonder struck. Wonder struck at nature, life, and the science of the universe. We immediately turned on our flash lights, positioned it in the forward direction and began the almost 30minutes walk down the tunnels of the cave. From touching every eroded rock, to being submerged in almost waste deep water – [water] trapped and forced into cracks in the rocks from the melting of the Wisconsin Glacier about 12,500 years ago – we were always left speechless at each turn we made in the cave. It is unfathomable to see and experience an active natural geological phenomenon that has been thousands of years in the making. The true feeling of being inside the Lusk cave is that of wonder at the natural order; how you can co-exist with naturally occurring phenomenon and eventually realize that life exists and will always continue to exist even long after the human race is gone.

Lusk Cave
Lusk Cave

This experience for me is one for the books. I felt at peace and at one with myself, with nature and I felt completely astounded by how much beauty there is in the world. You can feel this exact same way too, all you have to do is make that drive to Gatineau Park a little past the small town of Wakefield and Le Hibou, and you too can become as wonder struck as I still feel as I type these words with my keyboard.

IMAGE CREDIT: Flickr; James Peltzer