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Portrait of the park

History of Parc national de Frontenac

Isolated from major roads, the Grand lac Saint-François area was isolated from development for many years. It was not until the mid-20th century that the population settled there permanently and began to harvest resources and to farm on a small scale.

The idea of setting up a park in this area dates back to 1967. Several reasons favoured the creation of a park here. There were few recreation and conservation areas south of the St. Lawrence River. Moreover, the few remaining public lands in this densely populated area bordered Grand lac Saint-François. In the 1980s, construction began on equipment destined to provide access to this magnificent body of water, and the park was officially created in 1987, becoming the 16th park in the network.

Today, Parc national de Frontenac is a site representative of the natural region made up of the Eastern Townships, the Beauce and Bellechasse, and may be considered one of the last pockets of nature protected from the exploitation of natural resources in its immediate area. Forestry, agriculture, industrialization, property development and vacationing have transformed the region’s natural environments. The park preserves a significant part of the region’s natural and historical heritage.

The Park’s Natural Heritage

The park’s territory is characterized by great diversity in its natural environments and abundant plant and animal life. The leafy hills are the kingdom of deer, while the mosaic of lakes, ponds, marshes and streams designed in the coniferous forest are home to many ducks, otters and other animals who walk under the eye of the Great Blue Heron, which is everywhere in the park.

Birds are well represented in the park: more than 200 species have been recorded on its territory. There is a high concentration of life around the dozen or so lakes in the region, which is home to a great diversity of wildlife.

A huge peatbog of about 1.5 km2 dominates the Saint-Daniel sector and shelters several species of carnivore plants and a wide variety of orchids. An exceptional phenomenon at our latitude, a section of the peatbog is structured: its carpet of moss is torn into long pools separated by thin strips of sphagnum. This is the southernmost structured bog in its range.

The Cultural Heritage of the Park

Early humans trod the Parc national de Frontenac area about 11,000 years ago. This place has a long human history in Québec but there are no books specifically about the history of Parc national de Frontenac or its immediate surroundings

The park’s territory does not seem to have been inhabited very much since then. This may be explained by the fact the Amerindians only stayed there to meet specific needs. In addition, the type of soil and the topography of certain areas did not meet the settlers’ agricultural needs. The interest people had in this area was mainly due to Lac Saint-François and Rivière Saint-François.

Did you know?

The Park in Numbers

Year established: 1987
Area: 155 km2
Perimeter: 91 km
Annual attendance: 100,000 visit-days


Lists of Species

(in French only)

Amphibians and reptiles

Species at risk



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