Located in the rolling hills of Dufferin County, Island Lake Conservation Area is an absolute hidden gem. Its diverse landscape offers wetlands, forests, lakes, and meadows to explore. This nature retreat features a variety of trails that vary in distance making it perfect for families, dog owners, and experienced hikers. There are lots of spots to stop for a rest or have a picnic. The park is known for its bird-watching in the Spring. Come prepared with water, sunscreen, and snacks.
When the weather becomes cooler and the snow begins to fall, Island Lake becomes dotted with ice fishing huts as anglers reel in the catch of the day, skaters glide along the lake surface, and the trails come alive with snow-shoers and cross-country skiers. Be sure to bring proper footwear and warm clothes.
T R A I L S
Vicki Barron Lakeside Trail (8.3 km loop): If you want to truly experience this park, take this trail which is open all four seasons. The trail, featuring some partly shaded areas, takes about two hours to hike. Walk through woodlands and across boardwalks. Take in the panoramic views over the water, which become frozen solid in the winter. It is also a great spot for cross-country skiing, as well as snowshoeing. The trail is fairly flat overall and an easy hike. Flush washrooms are located near the rental center and a vault toilet at the Hurontario Street North parking lot.
The Memorial Forest Trail (3 km): The trail takes you through gentle grass mowed hills and provides you with a relaxing stroll that won’t take you too long to finish. Sprinkled across the trails you may find chestnuts and black walnuts.
Sugar Bush Trail (2 km): This shady trail leads you under the tree canopy as you hike this trail through the Maple-Beech forest. The pathways are a bit more rugged, with rocks and roots sticking out, so be sure to watch your step. It is not maintained in the winter.
The conservation area is also filled with wildlife, such as deer, porcupines, flying squirrels, painted turtles, and leopard frogs. You might get lucky enough to spot one.
Location: Orangeville, Ontario
Distance from Toronto: 1 hr 5 min
– Adults: $5.75
– Children (6-14): $2.65
– Senior (60+): $4.43
Max charge per vehicle: $23.90
Time of Year: All Seasons
Hours: Check Here
Trail Difficulty: Easy
Washroom Facilities: Yes
Contact: (800) 357-0890
Disclaimer: All information and prices are accurate as of the time of the posting. All opinions expressed are completely my own. This post is not sponsored.
*All images are copyrighted by Julia Melcher (@adventureontario) or credited to their owners. Please do not use or re-post without written consent and provide credit where applicable