Trails and Paddles
Love hiking, canoeing and kayaking? Check out some of our favourite routes!
The Ganaraska Hiking Trail was developed and is maintained entirely by volunteers of the Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association. The trail starts in Port Hope, on the north shore of Lake Ontario and after more than 400 kilometres connects with the Bruce Trail near Glen Huron. In Port Hope, the Ganaraska Hiking Trail connects with the Lake Ontario Waterfront Trail. In the Ganaraska Forest, the trail crosses the Oak Ridges (hiking) Trail. Including some branch trails, the total length of the trail is in excess of 500 kilometres.
Trans Canada Trail is an 18,000 kilometer recreational corridor crossing every Province and territory. This trail is soon to be the longest of its kind in the world. Guides to local trails that form part of the Trans Canada system are available
The Celebration of Trails is held each autumn and takes place on trails in communities throughout East Central Ontario. Events are available for all ages and stages.
The Central Ontario Loop Trail (COLT) is a 450km system linking trails in the counties of Peterborough, Haliburton, Hastings, Northumberland and the City of Kawartha Lakes. Much of the route is converted from rail, with slopes ideal for cycling, snowmobiling, hiking, cross-country skiing and horseback riding.
The K and P Trail (Kingston and Pembroke) Network- Using the K&P abandoned Railroad as a main channel this very extensive and linked trail system extends from Kingston and as far north as Sharbot Lake Provincial Park. Here the trail connects with the existing Cataraqui Trail, a part of the Trans-Canada Trail network. The trail also connects to a multitude of club trails. In its entirety, this system stretches from Kingston, to Perth, north to Calabogie, and almost reaches Bon Echo Provincial Park to the west. The trail traverses may Conservation Reserves and Crown lands and skirts both the Mississippi and Madawaska Rivers.
Municipal Trails are of course, essential and rich systems to tour the landscape. Visit the local municipal office or website to find out more.
Paddle Routes and Portages
Eels Creek 45 minutes north of Peterborough is for intermediate paddlers with some experience in moving water. It is a 7-km run with 6 portages; the longest being 162 m, and the most challenging around High Falls. Put-in at the bridge at Haultain on Hwy. 28 north of Burleigh Falls towards Apsley and Take-out at Northey's Bay Road. Also see: Eels Creek Canoe Park
Nogies Creek just east of Bobcaygeon is an easy day-one way paddle at 5-km long. With only one portage of 100 m (which has some steep footing). Put-in and Take-out at the bridge on Bass Lake Rd. off County Rd. 36
Gull River Flowing south through Minden, the river includes the Ontario Wildwater Preserve. Here beginners to extreme paddlers will find lengths for each level. Races, slaloms, celebrations and lessons are available.
The Kawartha Highlands Provincial Park features paddling for all ages and levels. From rapids, to creeks, multi-day portages, and larger lakes, this is a water-lovers amusement park. The area includes the Long Lake Canoe Route, a 2-3 day route, including 9 portages and passage through many lakes. This route starts at the end of Long Lake Road off of Hwy 28 north of Woodview.
The Black River and Head River an historic travel route across The Land Between with extensive wetlands and forests along their banks. The river has a multitude of lengths and a few drops for intermediate to advanced paddlers. The Black River begins in Haliburton County, and lies within portions of Muskoka, Simcoe County and City of Kawartha Lakes. It is the main tributary of the Severn River ending at Washago draining several lakes along the way. The confluence of Head River is just before St. John Lake.
Beaver Creek and Crowe River Hastings County, near Marmora offer canoeing and kayaking ranging from beginner levels to challenging waters. Beaver creek includes many rapids and drops including the 500m Class III Fidlar Rapids. Beaver Creek is just north of Marmora. The put-in is a bridge just north of Marmora at Shanick and take-out is 10km down stream at the confluence with the Crowe River.
The Mississippi River begins at the headwaters; the lakes of North Frontenac Park Lands and the Mazinaw. The channel at 200km heads west, running through many lakes, to the Ottawa River. The waterway offers beginner to challenging whitewater paddling. The Big Gull Loop is an intermediate canoe route through the upper reservoir lakes of the Mississippi River. The loop is approximately 90-110 km. The Clyde River is the largest tributary of the Mississippi River, boasting both leisurely paddles and whitewaters.
The Trent Severn Waterway National Historical Site: Best traveling by boat, this heritage waterway runs 386 km between Trenton and Lake Ontario, through the Kawartha Lakes and Lakes Simcoe and Couchiching, and Port Severn on Georgian Bay. Its main channel runs through the core of The Land Between. The Waterway boasts a historic locks system, and with its canals has been called "one of the finest interconnected systems of navigation in the world".