Orillia and Lake Country’s protected natural spaces provide locals and visitors a perfect opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors and get a dose of fresh air this winter.
Each of the following locations have unique characteristics that make them attractive to nature and outdoor recreation enthusiasts.
This 4,400 acre provincially-protected landscape of forests, cold water streams and rolling hills has something for every lover of the outdoors. With over 75 km of trails, Copeland Forest is perfect for hiking, snowshoeing (rentals available at nearby Horseshoe Resort) and fat biking, or simply immersing yourself in nature. For trails and access point please see the map. For the cross-country skiing enthusiast check out the 30km of groomed trails in the forest maintained by Horseshoe Resort.
Grants Woods is the perfect destination for those seeking a respite in nature. A network of 4 km looped walking trails, with connecting footbridges and interpretive kiosks, leads the visitor through a mature forest of towering maples and pines, some dating back 200 years. Don’t forget your camera, as the diverse flora and fauna of Grant’s Woods make for great photographic opportunities.
Located on the outskirts of Orillia, Scout Valley is a 230 acre oasis of nature that includes three well maintained trails. Each of these trails has their own features, including mature deciduous trees, streams and a scenic lookout with views of Lake Couchiching and Simcoe.
Hardwood Ski and Bike
If you prefer cross-country skiing, Hardwood Ski and Bike is ideal. Set amongst rolling hills of maple and pine forests and with 40 kilometres of groomed trails for cross-country skiing. In addition there are 11 kilometres of snowshoe trails, and fat-biking (rentals available) on a numer of trails. You sure won’t run out of winter fun here! Their facility features a chalet with washrooms and a food truck serving up tasty sandwiches. Be sure to check out their website before visiting for covid-19 protocols.
The 9.5km shared recreational-use Millennium Trail in Orillia is part of the Trans Canada Trail. Providing many great views of frozen Lake Couchiching the trail is popular with walkers and fat-bikers and travels through some of the city’s most scenic parks including Tudhope and Couchiching Beach. For easy access parking can be found at both of these parks.
Happy exploring and please remember to use the best practices of social distancing and sanitation while out on the trail.
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