If you’re someone who loves to go on outings to explore the beauty of nature and you live in Canada or are planning to visit here, then this blog is for you.
Today, we will be talking about one of Ontario’s parks, i.e., the Mono Cliffs Provincial Park, one of the most popular ones. It’s a park where you can visit on your day-offs or enjoy a terrific hiking trip with your friends or family to get an escape from your busy lives.
Mono cliffs provincial park is located in the Mono town in southern Ontario and on the picturesque Bruce Trail. There are no entry fees to visit the provincial park, but you have to pay for the parking lot if you have to park the car or any vehicle. The cost of a parking lot depends on how many hours you stay.
Many visitors come to this park every year as it is open year-round. The park consists of significant outliers, tremendous cliffs, surging waterfalls, lakes, and gorgeous lookouts.
It’s a beautiful place to visit mainly during the winter and fall seasons as large crowds visit on weekends in the summer season. An advantage during the winter season is that you can go skiing and snowshoeing on the hiking trails. The mono cliff is the most preferred place for such winter adventures, but it’s a day-use park only.
The Mono Cliffs provincial park is a dog-friendly park, but keep your dog on a leash. Camping & swimming are not allowed, but there are a lot of activities you can do in this park.
There are various biking and hiking trails, lovely scenic views, and some of the coolest spots you can go to when in mono cliffs. In this blog, I’m going to give you some ideas of things to do at the mono cliffs provincial park to explore the great spots and sites of the location.
A short history about mono cliffs provincial park:
During the 1970s government began acquiring the mono cliffs area for making it a provincial park to preserve the ecological importance and natural features of the Niagara escarpment. The mono cliffs provincial park was established in the year 1985.
The provincial land was regulated for the first time under the provisional parks act 1985. The mono cliffs are a part of the Niagara escarpment parks and open space system ( NEPOSS).
Things to do in Mono Cliffs Provincial Park:
1. Go to hiking trails:
For all the hikers out there, you’re going to love this place as it consists of 8 hiking trails, each having its unique lookouts to watch the scenic beauty. Not just for hikers but also for young kids and adults who want to go just for a walk with their dogs or for a hike with their friends. I will mention the names of the 8 trails below so that you can go for a hike on whichever you think is the best.
a. Spillway trail (1.3km):
Spillway Trail is a multi-use trail that goes in 2 directions. You can also go to the cliff topside through the spillway and carriage trails.
b. Cliff topside trail (2.8 km)
It’s a 5-mile loop trail that is moderately trafficked and part of the bruce trail. There is also a lookout platform to stand and look at the spectacular scenic view from the top of the cliff-top trail.
c. Carriage trail (1.3 km)
It is a short one and is the trail that acts as an access point to four of the other trails of mono cliffs. You can climb through a wooden staircase to reach the cliff-top viewing platform.
d. Lookout trail (600m)
This trail is a lightly trafficked one and is used mainly for walks, hikes, and watching nature.
e. South outlier trail (3.5km)
it features various wildflowers and plants and is also used for bird watching.
f. Walter tovell trail (4.8km)
It is a moderately trafficked trail that features plants and wildflowers. This trail features a small pond as well.
g. Mccarston’s lake trail (3.6km)
A heavily trafficked trail that consists of the Mccarston’s lake.
h. Bruce trail (900 km)
It is the longest and oldest footpath in Canada. Bruce trail is the one that travels through the mono cliff provincial park. It is located right from Niagara escarpment to Tobermory, Ontario.
2. Biking Trails:
If you are the one who loves biking and want to experience the mono hill trip on your bike/cycle, then you can try this. The list of trails in which biking is permitted in mono hills are given below:
a. Carriage trail
b. Spillway trail
c. Link trail
d. Walter tovell trail
e. Cliff topside trail
3. Discover the split narrows nature reserve:
The bruce trail conservancy preserved this split narrowly. The split rock trail is one of the 105m dead-end hiking trails, following the split rock crevice system.
You have to walk through the mossy crevice, and after you explore this trail, make sure to go on with the split rock narrow side trail as it will lead you to some beautiful valley views.
Also, there are a lot of interesting rock formations and caves as well. Explore these short trails near the mono cliff to see the most fantastic nature’s view.
4. Horseback riding
You can even go for horseback riding as this is one of the provincial parks that allow horseback riding. Get the feels of the fresh wind on your face as you ride the horse and travel through the trails and enjoy the fantastic scenic views.
It’s one of the fun things you can try out on Mono Cliffs if you love riding a horse.
5. Visit Mccarston lake:
You can go to this lake through the Mccarston lake trail, go straight on the trail further. You will get another trail on the left which will also take you to the lake, but it will take you longer to reach it. As you go straight down there, you will see a lookout, where you can stop and enjoy nature’s view. As you proceed a little further, you will find a left trail to take you to the lake.
This kettle lake is 14000 years old (approx), created when a retreated glacier’s piece of ice melted, known as the Mccarston lake. You can stop here for a while to check out its breathtaking view and take pictures.
6. Jacobb’s ladder:
To climb these stairs, you have to walk straight to the provincial park and go to the viewing platform; from there, you can see metal stairs that will take you to the wooden path. These metal stairs are named Jacob’s ladder, and they are also known as scenic rocky cliffs. This location will get a wonderful view of the cliffs that contain fossils.
7. Go for a picnic:
You can also go for picnics with your friends and family to have a good time in this park. Visiting the place during the fall season for a breeze is the most suitable one as at that time the park has lovely weather.
Some table arrangements are also done at the time of fall, summer, and spring for picnics in the grassy land, which is located near the parking lot.
DO’S and Don’ts at Mono cliff provincial park:
1. Stay on the trails while hiking to avoid dangers and harming plants & species
2. Park your cars in the parking lot
3. Bring your dog with a leash
4. Respect the park’s environment
5. Ride the bikes/cycle carefully on trails; watch out for the hikers.
1. Don’t litter anywhere in the park’s environment
2. Don’t bring liquor
3. Don’t damage any property of the park
4. Don’t ignite fireworks
5. Don’t make noises and disturb others
You can also take packed food with you for a picnic or lunch or otherwise you can go to the restaurants nearby the provincial park. One of the recommendations for restaurants is the Mono Cliffs Inn which has a great ambiance and food.
There is a lot more than you can explore and discover at the Mono Hills; sometimes, while going on trips like this, you may even find some of the hidden gems of the place. But one thing about the places like these allows you to feel more connected to mother nature and a sense of relaxation from all the stress.
Then what are you waiting for? If you are planning a trip to Mono Cliffs Provincial Park, add these places to your list for things to do so that you don’t miss out on the best places.
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