Niagara Section of the Bruce Trail
The southern terminus of the Bruce Trail is located at a stone cairn in Queenston Heights Park. Near Niagara Falls, the park is perched on the west side of a deep gorge carved over the centuries by the Niagara River. The Niagara Section ends in Grimsby, at a little bridge crossing 40 Mile Creek.
On the way through St. Catharines and Thorold, a hiker will pass all four of the Welland Canals, from the first canal, with it's narrow wooden locks, to the fourth canal, with its massive twin locks. Here, on this major international waterway, ships can be found from all over the world.
The Trail begins to travel through a woodland belt and across farmland before heading northward along the ancient shores of Lake Iroquois.
Apart from the Bruce Trail, there are several side trails which are worth exploring;
- General Brock Side Trail: (12.3km long) Runs from the cairn at Queenston Heights Park to Niagara-on-the-Lake.
- Upper Canada Heritage Trail: (11.5km long) Follows the old New York Central Railway bed for most of its length.
- Paul Naray Silurian Trail: (1.7km long) A short loop around Woodend Conservation Area.
- Wetland Ridge Side Trail: (1.1km long) Near Woodend, this trail travels through vineyards and reclaimed wetlands.
- Bert Lowe Side Trail: (12.4km long) This trail follows the Welland Canal south, then turns northwest to follow the south shore of Lake Gibson to Decew House Park.
- The Twelve Trail: (5.2km long) Follows Twelve Mile Creek to connect with the Merritt Trail.
- Black Walnut Side Trail: (2.0km long) An alternate route through the northern part of Short Hills Provincial Park.
- Rockway Falls Side Trail: (1.8km long) A short loop through Rockway Conservation Area.
- Louth Side Trail: (900m long) A short loop through Louth Conservation Area.
- Jordan Side Trail: (950m long)Provides an access routeto the Village of Jordan.
Occassionally it is necessary to re-route parts of the trail to avoid dangerous conditions (ie. spring flooding), or by request of the property owners. In these cases, the re-route is posted and new blazes are marked on the trail. It is important that you follow the blazes. If your map does not show the re-route, you still need to follow the blazes.
Up-to-date trail changes can be found on the Bruce Trail Conservancy Trail Changes page.