Grey Highlands, Ontario
1) Hike Old Baldy
Old Baldy has got to be one of the most spectacular natural wonders the Niagara Escarpment has to offer and it is right in our backyard. Whether you’re hiking in the spring to checkout the Ontario Trilliums, checking it out in the summer and fall to see the incredible views (and wow colours in autumn!), or snowshoeing in the winter, Old Baldy is always a great stop.
2) Explore the Feversham Gorge
The Feversham Gorge Conservation Area is absolutely worth a trip to Feversham. The gorge begins at the old mill dam in Feversham and continues 25m downstream extending over the Beaver River where its walls tower 80 feet over the river. What a sight to behold! As you follow the 1.5 km trail you will find some areas where the river is fairly shallow, there are also several lookout stations, picnic areas privies, a parking lot, lookout stations and a stairway to make your hiking more enjoyable. After your hike, be sure to stop into the quaint town of Feversham!
3) Paddle the Beaver River
Well speaking of the Beaver River, it definitely makes the top 10 in itself! Paddling on the Beaver River is an amazing way to get outside and enjoy nature with some great exercise. The Beaver River offers wonderful views and lots of wildlife to search for while you paddle through the valley. There are three entrance points in Kimberley, Epping and Heathcote giving lots of ways for you to access the river.
4) Checkout Local Waterfalls
Checking out the local waterfalls in the area is a great thing to do all year round. In the spring they are a wonder to behold as they are at their fullest with the raised water levels from the snow melting, but they are a fantastic day trip any time of the year. There is always something new to see every time you visit them! Hoggs Falls and Eugenia Falls are two of my personal favourites in the Flesherton area. If your closer to the Northern end of Grey Highlands then the less well known Webwood falls is the place to be.
5) Spend the Day on Lake Eugenia
In the summer, Lake Eugenia is the hot spot of Grey Highlands. This motorized lake offers great swimming, boating, water-skiing, fishing, paddling and the list goes on! The public beach and boat launch are great to spend the day lounging in the sun while the kids play in the water, then later launch your boat to get out on the water. This is definitely the best stop in Grey Highlands for fun in the sun!
6) Go Caving at Duncan Caves
For the adventure-thrill-seeker, Grey Highlands has got you covered! Duncan Caves Located in Duncan Escarpment Provincial Park just off of Side Road 9 you will find this hidden gem. The 6.5 mile trafficked loop trail features beautiful wild flowers and stunning views of the escarpment. The loop may be a little challenging for beginner hikers, but if you’re a seasoned adventure-seeker, this is place for you.
7)Travel the Scenic Routes
Grey Highlands has got some of the most amazing views around. You could easily spend a day just travelling the scenic routes on a bike ride or Sunday drive. Some of my personal favourites are Bowles Hill, Grey Road 13 coming from Eugenia to Thornbury, and Grey County Rd 7 from Kimberley to Meaford. Along the way there are some great lookouts to stop and enjoy the views with a nice picnic. A great stop is Epping lookout on Grey Rd 7 between Kimberley and Meaford.
8) Attend Local Events/ Festivals
Grey Highlands is home to lots of really fun local events and festivals no matter the time of year. The Flesherton Farmers Market is of course a staple every weekend from May to October. In the summer be sure to checkout the Markdale Street Frolic and the Flesherton Fling. In the Fall you can attend fall fairs in Markdale, Rocklyn and Feversham. Finally, in the winter finish off the year with the Markdale Santa Claus Parade.
9) Visit local shops
Grey Highlands is home to plenty of great stores and shops that make it easy to find whatever you need: be it a present for a friend’s birthday, some fantastic produce for dinner, some treats for your sweet tooth, or a little gift for yourself! Peek Thru My Window, Fancy That, and the County Line are a staple in Markdale that are great to stop for gifts. In Flesherton stop into Leslieville Cheese Market for different cheeses, smoked meats and fine foods to add to your dinner table. If you’re going through the valley be sure to checkout all of the goodies in the Kimberley General Store. The summer is great for street sales and be sure to remember these businesses in your Christmas shopping!
10) Discover Flesherton Hills
Flesherton Hills is an outdoor education area for students are both Grey Highlands Secondary School and école Macphail Memorial Elementary School, but it is open for the public’s use as well. The environmental education centre includes a mix of ponds, a beaver dam, forests, fields, an old orchard, and a picnic pavilion. It’s a fantastic area for a hike in the warmer months and its great for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter. A great place for the outdoor enthusiast!