Before we could get started hiking in Killarney Provincial Park, though, I realised at the park office that the person assisting us was someone whose name I recognised from the Friends of Killarney Park Facebook group. It was Cameron Hoepp, the park’s assistant superintendent!
We’re so grateful to him for showing us some alternate paddling routes and great snowshoeing options — now I’m already envisioning what my wintertime Killarney photos will look like!
Cameron also showed us the new and amazing book, In the Footsteps of the Group of Seven by Jim and Sue Waddington. I was particularly intrigued because I’d learned a lot about the Waddingtons while writing my own Following in the Group of Seven’s Footsteps article — Discovering the Canadian Wilderness Through Art, which features the works and ideas of Pierre AJ Sabourin.
Once we left the park office, we hurried to the first trail head, ready to enjoy the gorgeous autumn day we were having. We planned on covering the Cranberry Bog Trail, the Granite Ridge Trail, the Chikanishing Creek Trail, and Lake of the Woods Trail.
Cranberry Bog Trail
4 kilometres; 2 hours
This was one of my favourite trails of our day hiking in Killarney Provincial Park. The scenery was beautiful, the path was natural, and we only met a few people along the way (though maybe that’s because it was still early enough — we started the hike around 10 a.m.).
Granite Ridge Trail
2 kilometres; 1.5 hours
Although this trail is very easy, clear and wide (not exactly the way we like it), it took us longer than expected to complete because there were so many people hiking in Killarney Provincial Park! The trail does become more natural and rugged at the top of the largest ascent, and the views are just killer. Definitely worth it!
Chikanishing Creek Trail
3 kilometres; 2 hours
But maybe it was because it was mid-afternoon by then and people just wanted to be outside.
Everyone we met that day was super nice, but on this trail, there seemed to be an air of joyous freedom. People seemed to spend more time milling about, enjoying the endless views of Georgian Bay while hiking in Killarney Provincial Park.
As we stopped for a little snack, we watched a large group of twenty-something Europeans we’d befriended.
A few of the guys stripped down to their underwear and waded into the water, swimming to a nearby island. Their friends watched for a while. Once the swimmers had reached the island and hiked around to the other side, their friends promptly hid all the clothing that had been left on shore.
Marc and I continued on our way, but hearing shouts and laughter some minutes later, we easily guessed what it was (winky face).
Lake of the Woods Trail
3.5 kilometres; 2 hours
The trail was nice and natural most of the time, and there were pretty views of Lake of the Woods, and even of Silver Peak.
We didn’t see anyone else the entire time, which likely accounts for our quicker pace. The trail is a new one, so perhaps not as many people know about it.
But we rather felt that it was getting late in the day to start what is officially a three-hour trail, and that most people would prefer to take more time. With only three hours left until sundown, we weren’t concerned about our pace, but in all likelihood, many other people would be…
While we really did enjoy this trail, it was unfortunate that some older kids saw us atop a cliff from across the lake and spotted the dogs. We could hear them yelling, “Look, dogs!”
I thought that was cute at first, until the kids started howling to try to taunt the dogs. Since they didn’t let up for the next 10 minutes or so, I’m glad my dogs were smarter than them and didn’t pay them any attention! Lol!
Trail Info for Hiking in Killarney Provincial Park
If, like us, you love hiking in Killarney Provincial Park, you’ll also want to check out these articles, which describe other area trails: