Inverhuron Provincial Park

Length of stay1 day
June 2021

Located along the shore of Lake Huron, Inverhuron Provincial Park boasts of having one of the nicest sandy beaches in southern Ontario. Inverhuron features 125 campsites and has three hiking trails that weave through forests, wetlands and sand dunes.

Inverhuron also has an interesting history. It was first established as a provincial park in 1956. With the construction of the Bruce Nuclear Power Development, Inverhuron was sold to Ontario Hydro in 1973. Ontario Hydro also signed a 999-year lease with the government which allowed the park to operate as a day-use park only. Overnight camping was completely phased out by 1976. However, when Bruce Nuclear closed its Heavy Water plant in 1998, environmental and safety concerns were reduced and in 2005 the park re-opened and began offering overnight camping again.

After spending the morning hiking in Morris Tract Provincial Nature Reserve, we rolled into Inverhuron just before 2:30p.m.

It was hot and humid (27°C felt like 36°C with the humidity) with a threat of rain on the forecast. While we were eager to go for a swim, we decided to first go for a hike, largely because we probably wouldn’t want to afterwards. There are three hiking trails in Inverhuron and we planned to first hike along the River Trail (3km, rated moderate / difficult with large hills and rough trail surfaces). The trail loops through the forest and follows the Little Sauble River.

The trail is marked with yellow blazes on the trees and is relatively easy to navigate. There are a few storyboards along the trail that provide more information about some of the interesting features that can be viewed from the trail.

The trail passes by the largest eastern white cedar tree within the park. It has a circumference of over 12 feet, a diameter of almost 4 feet and is estimated to be about 400 years old.

The trail also passes by the site of a former mill. Back in the mid 1800s, there were saw and grist mills situated on the Little Sauble River. Unfortunately there was a fire that burnt down the grain warehouses and the pier. By 1886, residents began to focus more on fishing. Tragedy struck again in 1887 and a second fire ravaged the area, which made farming virtually impossible.

While there weren’t many remnants from the former saw mill, we did see a porcupine at the top of the hill. We must have surprised the porcupine because it scurried into the bush and then proceeded to climb up a tree. I’ve never seen a porcupine do that before.

The trail loops back to the bridge. In no time we were back at the beach area. Time to go swimming. We traded our hiking shoes for flip flops, changed into our bathing suits and grabbed our towels. It was windy and overcast and the waves were rockin’ and a rollin’. Even though the water was cold, it felt refreshing on such a hot and humid day.

We reluctantly got out to drink some water and let the wind dry us off. After getting changed we went on one other short hike along the Maloney Trail (1km, rated easy with set sections during the spring). We parked at the Gatehouse and first had to hike a short stretch along the Chain Trail to reach the Maloney Trail.

The trail waves through the forest and passes by the former homestead of WM Maloney, McGilles and McIntosh. There’s a couple of interpretive storey panels along the trail, including one that provides more information of the Malloney House.

On the drive out, we passed by a turnoff for a cemetery so we decided to check that out. The cemetery contains a few gravestones from the early settlers.

After that we headed out to Sauble Falls Provincial Park where we planned to spend the first night of our road trip.


My progress on the Ontario Parks Challenge can be found here

60 thoughts on “Inverhuron Provincial Park

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      We came for the beach, but were delighted to discover that Inverhuron also offeres a few hiking trails. Even though it was a hot and humid day, it’s always nice to spend time outdoors. Besides, it made going for a swim afterwards all the more worthwhile. Thanks for reading and leaving a comment.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      The beach was definitely the real bonus of the day given how hot and muggy it was. The cold water was most welcome and felt refreshing. It’s always great to catch a glimpse of the wildlife while hiking. It was pretty cool watching that little porcupine climb up the tree.

  1. Ab says:

    I’ve heard great things about Inverhuron, among them, as you noted, is the beautiful Sandy beach. Even on the overcast Gray day you got, I can see the hints of the beautiful blue in the water!

    The trails look wonderful too and it’s always humbling when you stumble across grave sites and realize you’re just a blip in this land’s history.

    Congrats on getting yet another Park crest! 🤗 And so lovely to see a rare photo of you and K. A lovely and well-travelled couple!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Thanks for your kind words. I can’t believe I’ve never been to Inverhuron before. We are definitely adding this to the list for next summer! The beach is gorgeous and the water is nice and shallow for the first stretch as there are a few sandbars. I’m glad it didn’t rain otherwise I’m not too sure we’d have gone swimming. There wasn’t much information provided about the trails on the Ontario Parks website, so we weren’t sure what to expect. We were pleasantly surprised to find that the trails were very well maintained and signed. It’s always a bonus to come across storyboards along the trail that provide more information about the history of the area. It’s a great way to mix some education with exercise! Take care. Linda

      • Ab says:

        Sandbars are always such a great, especially at low tide. Makes the beach experience extra special.

        And nice to know your full name, Linda. 😊

      • WanderingCanadians says:

        I love sandbars. It can be such a struggle to go swimming in the cold water sometimes, so it’s nice to have a long shallow stretch and plenty of sandbars to help gradually ease you in.

        I figured it was about time for me to open up a bit more 🙂

      • Ab says:

        We were blessed with a very low tide on our last day in New Brunswick so we spent an hour digging up small crabs and quahogs (clams). I’ll post pictures eventually. Just a bit comatose today after a long 16-hour drive yesterday. 🤣

      • WanderingCanadians says:

        That sounds like such a fun way to spend your last day in New Brunswick. Looking forward to seeing your pictures and reading about it. I’ve always enjoyed exploring the beach at low tide and seeing what’s washed up on shore or in the tide pools. Good thing you have the weekend to recover from the drive!


    That porcupine! You get the best wildlife shots when you are on the trail. You must be very quiet 🙂 Glad you enjoyed the park and than thanks for showing us some of the trails that we didn’t get a chance to hike yet!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      We have been quite lucky with our wildlife encounters while on the trail. In this case it was just perfect timing. We had just climbed up a steep ridge and when we got to the top we saw the porcupine in the middle of the trail. It’s too bad we were only visiting Inverhuron for a few hours as I would have loved to stay for longer. We’ll just have to return next summer.

      And yes, I imagine one of these days we probably will run into each other as we seem to enjoy similar things 🙂

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      You bet. On a hot day like that we didn’t need much encouragement to jump right in. The cold water felt amazingly refreshing. It’s always so much fun to swim in the waves. Thanks for reading. Linda

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Thanks for your lovely comment. We forced ourselves to go for a hike first otherwise we would have spent the rest of the afternoon at the beach! The water was nice and cold, which felt so refreshing on such a hot day.

  3. kagould17 says:

    Hiking in the heat is never fun, unless there is a cool dip after. Loved the porcupine shot. Better up a tree than shaking his quills at you. Thanks for sharing. Allan

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      For sure. We had to force ourselves to go on a hike first otherwise we could have easily spent the afternoon in the water. I’m glad we did otherwise we wouldn’t have seen the porcupine! And yes, better to see it scurry up a tree rather than getting quilled by it. We made sure to keep our distance.

  4. Lookoom says:

    That porcupine saw too many squirrels, he thinks he is one of them. Fortunately the sun stayed behind the clouds which must have taken away some of the heat. I like your picture, ready for action.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Haha, I love that! Usually I’m a fan of the blue skies and sun, but in this case given how hot it was already, I’m glad it was overcast. And thankfully it didn’t rain!! Either way, it was a great day to go for a swim!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Cedars are among some of my favourite trees. I love how they can seemingly grow just about anywhere (near water). This one was quite impressive given its sheer size and age! The cemetery was very unexpected and I’m glad we stumbled upon this on our drive out of the park. It was neat checking out the old gravestones and reading the names and dates.

  5. Justin Fague says:

    Oh my gosh, a porcupine on the trail! That’s so cool! I saw one up in the mountains of Utah a few weeks back, and it was pretty surreal! Kept my distance for sure. The beach looks great too – I want to jump right in!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      I haven’t seen too many porcupines and never this up close before (or seeing one climb a tree). That must have been so totally unexpected to see one up in the mountains! The beach was the real highlight of the day and a great way to cool down after hiking in the heat. It’s been hot and humid this past week and I would love to be back at the beach.

  6. salsaworldtraveler says:

    Thanks for taking me on a vicarious tour of Inverhuron Provincial Park. I really liked the wide trails and the sandy beach. I’d love to get to Ontario one day to explore some of these parks in person.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Inverhuron is a relatively small provincial park, but sure offers a variety of activities. That beach alone is worth the visit. I would love to return next summer and stay for longer. Hopefully you’ll make your way to Ontario someday. I would highly recommend a road trip around the northern shore of Lake Superior. The scenery in Northern Ontario is stunning.

  7. Diana says:

    That is one giant tree, I didn’t know cedars lived that long. Also how cool that you saw a porcupine! That’s one animal I’ve still never seen.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      I wish we could have spent more time in Inverhuron as it’s such a beautiful park. That beach alone is worth the visit. Thanks for reading. Hopefully you’ll make it here someday. Linda

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Cedars are such extraordinary trees. I love how they are able to grow in some unusual places and are able to twist and turn to survive. I’m glad we pulled over at the cemetery. It was neat walking through there and reading some of the names and dates.

  8. Janet says:

    Hi there. Nice to see you, i think it’s the first time I’ve seen your photo. Interesting find to see the porcupine. There used to be porcupines in Yosemite. They hung out in the trees. Beautiful photos.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Thanks for your kind words and for commenting. I don’t really post many pictures of myself, largely because I tend to forget when I’m out on the trail. Seeing the porcupine climb the tree was such a treat. That’s neat that you’ve seen a bunch of porcupines in Yosemite in the trees. Take care. Linda

  9. alisendopf says:

    Yeah! Another patch! Well done my friend. You’ve been busy. I was away for a week, and I have so much to catch up on.

    How cool that you saw a porcupine! In BC, we have to wrap our vehicles in chicken wire otherwise the porcupines get under there and chew on anything rubber. On my last trip, we had two porcupine break-ins (not my car thankfully).

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      We’ve certainly been busy collecting more park patches this summer. Hope you enjoyed your week off. It’s always nice to take a break from work and everyday life stuff. That’s wild that porcupines can chew up tires. I had no idea that they were so destructive!

      • alisendopf says:

        Oh yes! I’ll post photos of one guy’s Anti-Porcupine method. It’s really only a big problem if you are leaving the car overnight, but I’ve seen people wrap their cars for day trips too. BC is wild!

        Are you still smoke-free out there? The Kelowna fires are still out of control.

      • WanderingCanadians says:

        Please do! I’m so intrigued as to what people do to protect their tires from the porcupines. I would never have thought that this was a huge issue!

        The smoke from the wildfires in Northwestern Ontario comes and goes and we mostly only notice it now when we’re up north. We visited Algonquin a couple of weeks ago and the skies were pretty hazy on one of the days when the wind was blowing in a different direction. Hopefully the Kelowna fires get under control soon. I get that wildfires are natural, but it can be devastating to see their impact sometimes, especially on the wildlife as they may not have other options in terms of where to go.

      • alisendopf says:

        We finally have rain today. We are in the worst drought that anyone can remember. The rain started late last night, and everyone is praying it just keeps coming and coming. Kelowna is also getting rain, so fingers crossed it helps.

        Yes, the wildlife is what is really suffering now. Cattle can be moved, but no one moves the bears or deer. Truly sad. Thank you for your thoughts. I hope Northern Ontario gets some rain too.

      • WanderingCanadians says:

        Glad to hear that you’re finally getting some rain. Hopefully it’s enough and that it keeps on coming. I hope this isn’t the new normal when it comes to weather.

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