Embrace The Crisp Winds Of Winter
Winter doesn’t mean hibernation in Frontenac County – quite the opposite, actually! It’s time to awaken the senses and take part in the best season.
Here ‘s a list of things to do that will get you excited to throw on a snowsuit.
Visitors can enjoy 11 kilometers of track-set trails that are perfect for hiking, snowshoeing, skiing, and spotting wildlife. Explore the park on the Big Salmon Lake Road, an easy 3.5-kilometre trail with gentle slopes and curves, or the Corridor Trail, a moderately difficult 4.5-kilometre trail bordered by trees with several steep hills. We recommend the Doe Lake Loop and the Arab Lake Gorge Loop for snowshoeing.
Frontenac Provincial Park in the winter is one of the most serene places to see the southern edge of the Canadian Shield up close.
Enjoy a weekend of wintry solitude and camp out at Frontenac Park. Book your backcountry camping trip on the Ontario Parks website or contact the Friends of Frontenac Park. Set foot on the snowy trails as you travel to your campsite for a unique and exciting wintery experience.
Getting outdoors during the winter is not only healthy, but a great opportunity to turn the dreary season into a collection of positive memories.
Here’s the ‘Unofficial South Eastern Ontario Loop’. Begin your day just North of Napanee and follow the E Trail north to Smiths Falls and Perth, looping back around to Sharbot Lake, and eventually back through Stone Mills Township to Yarker and Napanee. You will experience some of the best parts of the region and beyond as you fly through the snow. What’s unique about this loop is all the small communities you will discover along the way.
Feed your national pride, the Snowmobile is as Canadian as maple syrup, hockey, or the Beaver! Be apart of what it means to be Canadian and rent a Snowmobile for the weekend. Even if you’ve never tried it before, this is your opportunity to ‘get your Canada on’ in South Eastern Ontario.
The Frontenac K&P Trail is a winter wonderland as it becomes a snowmobiler’s haven when the snow flies. The Frontenac K&P Trail is part of a larger 180-km multi-use recreational trail that essentially connects Renfrew with downtown Kingston. However, Frontenac County owns and operates the 90-km stretch from Kingston to Wilbur. The Frontenac K&P Trail is a proudly developed rail trail with small communities highlighted along the way. In winter, that section of the trail is enjoyed by avid snowmobilers who like the well maintained trail and stopping for amenities in the local villages.
Frontenac is known for its beautiful snowmobile trails – this brings playing in the snow to another level! The Lennox and Addington Ridge Runners Snowmobile Club is one of the most active in Frontenac. The club grooms the Frontenac K&P Trail from Orser Road to Tichborne, in addition to other local trails. The Snow Road Snowmobile Club also manages over 470 km of trail including those in North Frontenac. Don’t forget that in order to ride on snowmobile trails in Ontario, a permit from the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs is required.
3. Fat Biking
The best thing about fat biking is that you can point your wheel in any direction and ride the trails throughout South Eastern Ontario. That being said, fat biking is not permitted on the trails at Frontenac Provincial Park. Here’s a couple of trails to use instead!
The 103-kilometre trail known as the Cataraqui Trail starts from Smiths Falls to Strathcona and covers a variety of terrain. With forty-eight access points, the trail gives you a diverse cross-section of the Frontenac Arch Biosphere. You’ll share the trail with skiers, hikers and snowmobilers, as well as deer, rabbits, birds and foxes! Let the Canadian Shield, Frontenac Axis and peaceful farmland be your picture-perfect backdrop.
Frontenac’s K&P Trail packs a scenic punch. Part of the Trans Canada Trail, the 75 km stretch of the K&P Trail between downtown Kingston and Sharbot Lake is fully developed rail trail with stops in neighbouring communities. Stretching from just near the Cataraqui Creek to Orser Road, you’ll enjoy rugged rock cuts and pretty wetlands. Six access points and well-marked trails make this a local favourite. The trail has numerous views of wild Canadian Shield landscapes and makes for the perfect weekend adventure by bike.
4. Bird Watching
Wolfe Island is a melting pot of habitats that invite hundreds of species of birds to come and spend their days gazing upon the stunning scenery. You won’t have a problem spotting some of the larger birds that stick to the island in the winter months including owls, harriers and hawks. Our challenge to you? Spot as many as possible while you scour the snowy fields and dense trees.
Not only is Trousdale’s known as the nation’s oldest general store – but what makes it remarkable all these years later is that it has kept safe a treasure trove of history. From the old brass crank cash register to a collection of yardsticks which now adorn the door to the old meat cooler, it’s almost a social museum nearing two centuries old.
Walking through the door at Trousdale’s in Sydenham, is like stepping back in time. The wooden floor creaks in just the right way, the long century-old counters still greet customers and there’s even a spool of string still hanging from the tin ceiling, used for wrapping brown paper parcels long before plastic bags existed.
“Ever-changing and never changing” is the motto Trousdale General Store lives by. Step into a building that has been standing since 1836 and has been owned by a member of the Trousdale family ever since!
Once you have found some special tokens to bring home, saunter over to the historical Blacksmith Shop to Memory Lane Flowers and Gifts. Brighten up your home with a stunning bouquet of beautiful flowers, or grab a special gift for somebody you love!
6. Hot Tent Camping
And now for something completely different! Rent a hot tent from Frontenac Outfitters along with the gear and experience something new. Frontenac Outfitters even offers gorgeous campsites on their property which has a tent already set up and ready to go. Full instructions on stove use are provided as well as a parking spot only a short walk from your vehicle. Frontenac Outfitters also offers hot tent rentals for use at Frontenac Provincial Park, which has proven popular in recent years. Just because the snow is flying doesn’t mean you have to give up camping! Give them a call instead and set your winter course to adventure.
When the snow piles up – it’s piles of fun! Hit the trails snowshoeing at Frontenac Provincial Park to make the most out of winter. From trekking poles to adult and even youth snowshoes, Frontenac Outfitters is the one-stop-shop for purchasing the perfect pair. If renting snowshoes sounds enticing, Frontenac Provincial Park rents snowshoes during the winter months when the office is open. The modern-style snowshoes come with trekking poles in a variety of sizes. According to park info, the most popular trails enjoyed by snowshoers and hikers in winter are the moderate 3 km Doe Lake Loop and the easy 1.5 km Arab Lake Gorge Loop. Head out and have fun!
8. Cross Country Skiing
Gould Lake Conservation Area is a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle. Here you’ll find 20 km of trails with rolling and rugged terrain. The Rideau Trail crosses the property, too! Orange triangles mark the main trail, blue triangles mark the side loops – but note that the beautiful trails are not groomed for cross-country skiing during the winter months, so be prepared to break your own trail.