Hike in Huron - Winter 2022
Winter hiking may seem daunting, but with a little preparation and some local knowledge, hikers will find that winter is one of the best seasons to experience Huron County. We have chosen these hikes because of the great scenery and because the trails are easy to use in snowy weather. As with any outdoor adventure, be sure to dress for the weather, know the forecast and be aware of the trail conditions. Snow can pack into ice quickly and slippery sections are common. Hike with a partner and carry a cell phone.
Point Farms - Old Farms Trail: In the height of winter, the gate is closed to the Point Farms Provincial Park, but the trails are open for hiking and cross-country skiing. The Old Farms Trail is 6.3 kilometres long, and is aptly named. The path travels through areas that were once farm fields and orchards that have since been rehabilitated back to natural areas. The trail is well marked for the most part, but can get a bit tricky if you take the branch that passes through the hibernating campsites. 82491 Bluewater Hwy, Goderich
Redmond Tract: The Redmond Tract is a Huron County-managed forest with a 2.1-kilometre-long loop trail that features a stream and small lake. Occasionally, the section just past the bridge that crosses the stream can be quite wet, so make sure you have proper footwear if you are hoping to do the full loop. If the section is impassable, there are other options to stick to the forest area. This is a quiet trail that is off the beaten path, but well worth the extra effort.
The pandemic has helped many people rediscover the outdoors and increased traffic on all of the area trails. There’s no need for inexperience or a lack of knowledge to dampen anyone’s fun. Here are a few simple rules to follow to ensure that everyone enjoys their day rejuvenating in nature.
- Pack in, pack out: Carry everything out that you carried in. The beverage containers you brought are even lighter after you drank the contents during the hike, so there is absolutely no reason to leave your water bottle or Tim Hortons cup behind. Take care that wrappers and tissues from your pockets don’t fall out as you are rummaging through your pockets. This can’t be stressed enough, no littering. If you are scooping up your dog poop, please take the plastic bag with you. Plastic bags of poop left on the trail are just as bad as leaving it.
- Make yourself known: When you encounter other hikers and trail users, offer a friendly “hello” or a simple head nod. This helps create a friendly atmosphere on the trail. If you approach another trail user from behind, announce yourself in a friendly, calm tone and let him/her know you want to pass.
- Stay on the trail: Don’t step off the trail unless you absolutely must when yielding. Going off-trail can damage or kill certain plant or animal species, and can hurt the ecosystems that surround the trail. Always practice the “Leave No Trace” principles: Leave rocks, vegetation, and artifacts where you find them for others to enjoy.
- Leashed dogs are the best dogs: Even in areas where off-leash pets are permitted, keep your leash handy for when you encounter other hikers, and for your pet’s safety. Remember that some people are afraid of dogs and may not appreciate an encounter with your pup.