Father Troy’s Trail connects the communities of Flatrock and Torbay via a ridgeline route that takes hikers into the clouds and offers spectacular views of the coastline to the north and the south, before descending into the woods and the fields surrounding Torbay.
Beginning in Flatrock, the initial kilometer or so of the trail makes it obvious why the town is so named, following a gently sloping, flat bedrock shore. Hikers can explore to a point locally known as the Beamer or turn right to continue towards Torbay, the branch marked by a massive erratic. The trail heads uphill to the remains of a hilltop bunker. I wasn’t allowed to climb in.
The views are spectacular for the next couple of kilometers as the altitude increases and the trail follows an exposed ridgeline. Leaving the ridge, hikers have the option of following a loop trail closer to Church Cove or continuing straight. The Church Cove loop rejoins the trail at a second loop option, Whale Cove, another kilometer or so along the trail. Either branch is a viable option here as they all eventually rejoin one another. Apparently, Church Cove is challenging but I can’t attest to that as it’s not the route we chose.
Once the trails rejoin the community path, the signs of habitation on the outskirts of Torbay become evident, with fenced fields on either side of the trail. Entering Torbay, a few climbs around the fields surrounding the bay end in a climb up to the trailhead at the end of Spray Lane.