Distance hiked: 11kmLocation: Earl Rowe Provincial Park, OntarioDate: July 12, 2020 With many travel restrictions still in place, we’ve been trying to explore more of Ontario’s provincial parks. Located about an hour outside of Toronto in Alliston, Earl Rowe Provincial Park provides a number of outdoor activities such as canoeing, swimming, fishing and hiking. Toronto … Continue reading Hike #32: Rainbow Run Trail
In the late 1800s to 1930s the area around Chutes Provincial Park was used for logging. In the winter, trees were toppled, cut into sections and dragged from the forest and placed onto the ice-covered river. In the spring, when the ice and snow started to melt and raise the water levels, the pine logs floated down the Aux Sables River to the mouth of the Spanish River. To reduce the risk of logs jamming up the river, special chutes were built around difficult sections.
Hiking is not always about the distance, but sometimes the views along the way. While many trails in Lake Superior Provincial Park feature sweeping views of the lake and its rugged coastline, Trapper’s Trail (1.5km, rated easy) is reputed to provide a different type of view – of the wildlife. Spoiler alert: it lived up its reputation.
The name Orphan Lake just sounds depressing. Even more so when you pass signs for Dad Lake, Mom Lake and Baby Lake along the drive to get to the trailhead for the Orphan Lake Trail. But the hike itself is not tragic, but rather all magic. Except for the steep parts.
There is a hiking trail, or rather series of connected hiking trails that form a loop, in Neys Provincial Park that provides sweeping vistas of Lake Superior, including Pic Island.
Sleeping Giant Provincial Park gets its name from a great land formation that when viewed from Thunder Bay, resembles a giant lying on its back. And it just so happens that there is a hiking trail in the park that leads to the top of the giant. Naturally it is reputed to provide some of the best views of Lake Superior.
Along our road trip around Lake Superior, we stopped at Pancake Bay Provincial Park for a day. Located on the northern shore of Lake Superior, Pancake Bay is reputed to have one of the nicest sandy beaches in Ontario. Besides its gorgeous beach, it also has a couple of hiking trails, including the Edmund Fitzgerald Lookout Trail (14km round trip, rated moderate).
Killarney offers a few different hiking options ranging from shorter day-use hiking trails to multi-day hiking trails. The most popular of these trails is The Crack (6km round trip, rated difficult). The trail overlaps with a small section of La Cloche Silhouette Trail (an 80km loop that typically takes between 7 to 10 days to complete) and weaves up the white cliffs of La Cloche Mountains and through a crack to the top of Killarney Ridge. The top of the ridge is reputed to provide the best views in the park.
Grundy Lake offers a range of activities, including hiking. There are three relatively short trails that weave their way through different habitats in the park, including wetlands, forests and rocky overcrops. Our favourite of these trails was the Swan Lake Trail (1.5km loop, rated moderate to difficult).
It's been an unusually hot summer here in Ontario. With temperatures exceeding 30°C on the regular, it hasn't been ideal weather for hiking. But we were on a mission to complete 52 hikes this year, so even though it was sweltering hot and humid outside, we went for a hike anyway. Besides, we planned to visit G & S afterwards to go swimming in their pool. So how bad could it be? Spoiler: it was terrible.