Muskoka’s trail network covers some 4000 sq kms of rugged terrain, showcasing some of the most spectacular views and vista hiking trails in Ontario.
Muskoka’s trail network covers some 4000 sq kms of rugged terrain, showcasing some of the most spectacular views and vista hiking trails in Ontario.
The Lions Lookout Trail can be accessed at the Forbes Hill Dr and Camp Kitchen Road intersection behind the Active Living Centre at the Canada Summit Centre. The trail follows Camp Kitchen Road along the Muskoka River to Fairy Lake. It then crosses the Portage Flyer railway tracks and heads up a steep slope to the top of the sports track. The trail continues around the track and along the roadway to Forbes Hill Dr. The view from the top of the track across Fairy Lake is magnificent. The trail is 1.5km long, and has steep inclines.
Featuring up to 11km of hiking trails with varying degrees of difficulty, the Frost Centre Hiking Trails meander through the forest adjacent to St. Nora Lake. This trail system offers a little bit of everything, from millennia old geological formations which give insight into the last significant ice age, to large bogs, towering cliff faces, mixed forests, challenging climbs and spectacular lookouts. Be sure to pack lunch and your camera because you can spend an entire day exploring these trails.
In 1999, Torrance Barrens Conservation Area was designated as the world’s first permanent Dark Sky Reserve. The 4,700-acres of Crown land is bedrock and wetlands, with trees and bushes that are stunted in height. For star-gazers this means a spectacular 360 degree view of the night sky, unhampered by light pollution. Even an amateur’s telescope can see the rings of Saturn. Late in the summer and in the early fall it’s posssible the northern lights (aurora borealis) could put in an appearance.
The Barren’s also doubles as an exceptional hiking and mountain biking destination, with 3 well marked trails for public use.
Encompassing 1,990 hectares (5,000 acres), the Torrance Barrens Conservation Reserve is one of the most striking geological areas in Muskoka. The lunar landscape of the Torrance Barrens is characterized by low ridges of Precambrian bedrock, separated by wetland and peat-filled hollows. The barren landscape contains scattered boulders and little soil. The prevalence of bare bedrock is a direct result of wave washing of glacial lakes Algonquin and Nipissing. The nationally rare Eastern Bluebird, and Cooper’s Hawk can be spotted from the Barrens, along with diverse vegetative species. Ontario’s only lizard, the five-lined skink can also be spotted here.
Take a leisurely walk along this charming mulch-based pathway, which extends along the peninsula. This stroller friendly trail is 2km
Experience breathtaking views of Lake Muskoka and the Muskoka Wharf. Gazebos, benches and picnic tables are located along the pathway for you to relax and enjoy the scenery.
Take part in great photo opportunities as the trail travels high above along the exposed granite ridge, winding down through forested areas and then along the shoreline.
Also located on the peninsula is the Children’s Memorial Gazebo, a special spot on the water’s edge just off the main trail. Located in a secluded area, the gazebo is a peaceful place to reflect and pay tribute to lost loved ones while the waves lap against the rocky shoreline.
From the parking lot turn right on Dwight Beach Rd. Follow this quiet road 1500 steps to Dwight Beach an excellent spot for lunch with a view up Dwight Bay. Proceed along Dwight Beach Rd. 1000 steps to Stewart Memorial Church.From here you can return the way you traveled for a total of 5000 steps.
The Ragged Falls Oxtongue River trail is only 1 km long but it offers a great view of the Ragged Falls. It is just off Hwy 60 near the Algonquin Park border. Its proximity to Algonquin Provincial Park makes this protected waterway almost an Algonquin appendage, but it’s a park in its own right, and for good reason. Oxtongue River – Ragged Falls contains many features of local significance. The small plunge basin at Gravel Falls demonstrates the powerful, erosive force of glacial melt-water. There are nine distinct forest communities in the park. A marked gravel road provides access to Ragged Falls. Also accessible are the parking lot, washrooms and marked hiking trails that lead to a lookout over the falls. Ragged Falls has been named one of the 10 best waterfalls in Ontario.
Caution, this trail follows the shore of a fast moving river with rocky slopes to the river’s edge. Parents must keep small children close at all times.
Trail access if on Oxtongue Rapids Park Road. Follow this paved road 1 km. At this point the road becomes a narrow gravel road.
Proceed 2 km to the monument in Oxtongue Rapids Park, which is the start of the trail. From the monument travel west along the trail to the left of the road you arrived on. At times the trail will follow the road itself as it comes quite close to the river. Trail length is about 1 km or 1250 steps one way. Return the same way or follow the road back to the monument. This is one of the most beautiful spots in Muskoka so relax and enjoy. Picnic facilities are available.
The Dorset Tower is both a great attraction and a historical landmark. It was built in 1967 on the site of the original fire tower where rangers once kept an eye out for potentially disastrous forest fires. The trail begins behind the Dorset Heritage Museum and winds its way through a beautiful mixed forest from the base of the lookout hill to the top, and back down again. The incline is fairly steep in places so sturdy shoes and a reasonable level of fitness are recommended. The total trail is 2.3km long. Taking time at the top of the lookout is a must while hiking this trail.
Three short, linear but interconnected hiking trails offer visitors the opportunity to take in the natural and cultural heritage of Six Mile Lake Provincial Park.
The Living Edge Trail 1 km, easy
Catch a glimpse of beaver lodges in wetland areas, walk the rocky outcrops of the Canadian Shield and keep your eyes open for the wide variety of species that live in the forest!
The David Milne Trail 0.5 km, easy
This trail celebrates the influence of one of Canada’s foremost artists who lived on Six Mile Lake and used the scenic vistas and majestic landscape as inspiration for his paintings. These paintings would later be recognized for their impact on Canadian culture. View the signature rolling rocks of the Canadian Shield that inspired so many of his paintings and sketches.
The Marsh Trail
Hikers will circle a wetland area which provides important habitat for a wide variety of plants and wildlife. Keep your eyes open for all kinds of species from dragonflies to moose!
The trail travels along the Muskoka River and around Bracebridge Bay. The surface is pavement and gravel. The only incline is the stairs by Bracebridge Falls. Ten historic information plaques identify points of interest along the route. There is ample parking at Bay Park for this 1.3km ‘near urban’ hike.
This fascinating walking tour of the village of Dorset will take you back in time with 21 historical points of interest. Print maps are available to pick up from Robinson’s General Store, voted ‘Canada’s Best Country Store’. This gentle stroll of this charming community has beautiful views of the river, and many unique museums and sites to admire along the way.
Whether you are looking for wildlife, planning a short hike, a fast paced mountain bike trail ride, or a scenic snowshoe excursion, it is our hope you will find everything you are looking for in the Echo Valley Nature & Bike trails.
There are a total of over 3.5 km of trails consisting of the main trunk line and 14 smaller trails with varying degrees of difficulty. Hiking the main trunk line should take approximately 30-45 minutes. The park is approximately 24 hectares (60 acres) in size and there is a viewing platform overlooking the protected land. A viewing guide and three different on-site kiosks are available to enhance the learning experience.
Features & Amenities: Parking, observation deck, and scenic views.
Please make a donation of $2 to support the trails and help cover the costs of trail development. There is an honour box on site.
The 5km Beetle Lake Trail has it all, rocky ridges, lookouts, magnificent hardwood hills, beautiful creek and an amazing bog. The trail starts beside Algonquin Outfitters and traverses a hardwood forest full of new and old growth trees. As you explore the trail you will come to a footbridge crossing Oxbow creek. This is an excellent location to have lunch or a rest. Evidence of beaver activity is visible in this area along with blue herons searching for a meal in the creek. After the bridge you will hike to the top of the ridge and follow the trail south through a mixed wood forest. A massive 100 foot rocky ridge awaits you overlooking Oxtongue Lake, providing an excellent photo opportunity. Continue down the ridge to Elliot Road then onto Hwy 60, crossing the bridge back to Algonquin Outfitters.
The Yonge Street Trail is a natural ground trail that wends its way through mature forest. The trailhead is located at the end of Yonge St where there is a turnaround area where you can park. The trail takes about 30 minutes to walk or 10 minutes to bike ride. Please remain on the trail as private lands border the trail.
The Hunters Bay Trail is a 3.8km walking, running and cycling trail. It begins at the Centre Street bridge near KWH Pipe and winds along the river, under the railway trestle, along the south side of Hunters Bay, through the Avery Beach Park and onwards to the Hwy #11 corridor. Enjoy the 450 foot section of the trail that floats on Hunters Bay. This is an ideal place to relax while fishing or swimming or just enjoying the trail. There are small nodes along the trail to stop and enjoy the scenery. Orchard Park is at the southern tip of the bay that looks down the full length of the bay.
Over 25km of trails at Muskoka’s only National Park!
Nestled in the famous 30,000 islands, the world’s largest chain of freshwater islands, Georgian Bay Islands National Park (GBINP) is where you’ll be inspired by the rugged beauty of the Canadian Shield and the clear water of Georgian Bay! You will find waterfront cabin rentals, shoreline campsites, mountain bike rentals, a welcome centre, interpretive programs, picnic shelters, beaches and trails for hiking and biking which follow scenic granite ridges dotted with windswept white pines to picturesque bays.
The Park offers many hiking trails ranging from short easy strolls to more demanding hikes. All trails allow visitors to enjoy the scenic beauty of the park and provide opportunities to view park wildlife.
Northern Beausoleil trails showcase the beauty of the Canadian Shield. This area’s characteristic bedrock and wetland environment is rich in species diversity and is a major breeding area for amphibians, turtles and snakes.
The trails in Southern Beausoleil pass through a rich mosaic of forest communities. This area’s mixed forest is a good representation of the West St. Lawrence Lowlands natural region.
Getting There: The park is made up entirely of islands and is accessible only by boat. Parks Canada operates a boat shuttle service called the DayTripper, which runs between Honey Harbour and Beausoleil Island (reservations are recommended).
Widely considered to be one of the best provincial parks in Ontario, Algonquin Park features a multitude of hiking trails just waiting to be explored. The park features over a dozen interpretive walking trails, making your hike both challenging and fascinating.
The Fairy Vista Trail is an all season trail travelling through fields, forests and wetlands. It is for all types of recreational activity with the exception that no motorized vehicles are allowed. The Fairy Vista Trail is accessible near the corner of Hwy #60 and Fairyview Drive.
Enjoy your walk around the quaint village of Baysville. This route passes many of the historic homes churches and businesses. It explores both east and west sides of the river including a nature walk in the Van Setter’s Park to a lookout over the rock cut on District Road 117. There are many views of the Muskoka River from the numerous parks, and you get to learn about the fascinating history and pioneer days of this beautiful village.
Hike the nearby trail, with trail head access at the end of Sander Dr. Wilson Falls is the wildest and most scenic falls on the North Branch of Muskoka River. Located just to the north of the Downtown area off of River Road, Wilson’s Falls has a great walking trail which provides a spectacular view of the falls. A picnic area is also available.
This 3.6km trail is nestled in the community of Hillside and follows a paved road into a hamlet filled with Bed and Breakfasts, birds, woodlands, and plenty of nature. Enjoy the quiet atmosphere of this community as they welcome your visit. With plenty to see and a great grand finale, your day at Hillside Hamlet can be complimented by the many amenities around you.
To access: Turn right at Tally Ho entrance and follow to the right of the driveway. Park at Grassmere Beach, and head back out the same driveway.
At this year-round park in the heart of Muskoka, hike or bicycle on trails that wind through maple forests and past waterfalls, beaver ponds and homesteaders’ farms. Quiet Arrowhead and Mayflower Lakes and the meandering Little and Big East Rivers, are ideal for paddling, fishing and swimming.
Features 15km of hiking trails, and two (7.5km total) moderately challenging mountain bike trails. Rentals: canoes, kayaks and mountain bikes during the summer season. Return in the winter to ski on groomed trails, tube down a hill or skate on an outdoor rink.
Beaver Meadow Trail – 7 km (2 hours) moderate
Arrowhead’s longest trail passes Porcupine Bluffs, the remnant shoreline of a huge ancient lake. The bluffs are easily visible in the spring and fall but are hidden during the leafy summer months. The trail circles a large beaver pond with large rafts of cattails where you might see otter, moose, Great Blue Heron, Tree Swallows and, of course, beavers. Near the end, the trail crosses a field and you can see evidence of the once successful Oke homestead—old fence lines, building foundations and domestic plants such as rhubarb and apple trees.
Big Bend Lookout – easy
This short walk from the parking lot on Roe Campground Road leads to a panoramic view of the meandering Big East River and the surrounding Muskoka terrain.
Homesteaders Trail – 3 km (1 hour) moderate
In the 1870s, homesteaders cleared this area. Take this trail across moderately rugged terrain and see traces of abandoned farm fields now reclaimed by young forest.
Mayflower Lake Trail – 1 km (30 minutes) moderate
Ten thousand years ago, Mayflower Lake was a small bay in a large glacial lake. Today it is a small, deep, spring-fed lake. Its cold, clear waters provide ideal habitat for cold water fish such as Rainbow Trout. This trail has several lengthy climbs and descents over the hills surrounding Mayflower Lake and can be muddy, so wear your hiking boots.
Stubb’s Falls Trail – 2 km (45 minutes) easy
Take this trail in early spring when wildflowers and songbirds will be your reward. At Stubb’s Falls, the Little East River rushes down a rock chute. Stop here for a pleasant respite.
The Bracebridge Resource Management Centre offers groomed cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, hiking and mountain biking trails within a woodland setting along the Muskoka River. Hikers can enjoy up to 19km of trails during the spring, fall and summer.
The area features attractive wooded areas, a vairety of flora, fauna and bird life as well as scenic vistas along the Muskoka River.
Huckleberry Rock has been well known locally for over 100 years as a scenic lookout – and one of the best places to catch a sunset in all of Muskoka.
These rocks are some of the oldest rock in the world, well over a billion years old.
Recently, donations of land from adjacent landowners have now created a 120 acre township park that allows public access to enjoy the views from the Lookout. Trail Markers: white ribbons in trees and white marks on rocks.
Limberlost is famous for its varied hiking trails. In total, Limberlost offers more than 70 km of woodland trails and extensive woodland roads, with trails that cater to evening strollers as well as those seeking more strenuous exercise. More than two-thirds of the trails on the Limberlost Reserve are groomed and qualify as high quality trails, as opposed to rugged hiking paths. As such, they are suitable for joggers as well as individuals who prefer to enjoy nature at their leisure. These trails are also great for mountain biking enthusiasts.
In the winter, head on out to the trails with your snowshoes, or bring your cross country skis to experience their 25 km of groomed trails.
The best part of the Limberlost Forest and Wildlife Reserve trails, is they offer them for your use, free of charge!
You will find the Hardy Lake trails in Hardy Lake Provincial Park just off of Hwy 169 east of Torrance. There are no facilities at this Park. Biking, motorized vehicles and camping are not permitted.
For novice users, there is a lovely 3km trail that traverses rocky outcrops, natural shoreline and forested areas. This trail is of moderate difficulty with some steep ascents and declines. Users should have basic navigation skills.
The 8km trail circles the lake with magnificent views of untouched shoreline. This is considered a ‘wilderness’ trail and can be challenging for novice users! The trail travels over shoreline, wetlands and forested areas and requires some moderate navigation skills. The trail requires at least 2-3 hours to complete.
A 7km trail on the South East side of the park traverses through forest and over wetlands to the shore of Lake Muskoka providing splendid views of one of the ‘big lakes’. This trail is also challenging. Trail Markers: white ribbons in trees.
This tour takes about an hour and a half to walk through the main central region, with side trips by bike or car to the more outlying points of interest. Please park in the Municipal lot, take some time to explore the shops in the village itself, and do be respectful of private property. Pick up a print map from the Lake of Bays Township offices in Dwight.
The trails form a route between wetlands and hills, hardwood forests, barren stone ridges and cranberry marshes. Over 10km of trails that originate at Johnston’s Cranberry Marsh and Winery, in Bala – the Cranberry Capital of Ontario.
More fun to pair with your hiking adventure:
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