Running the Bruce Trail End to End: Niagara Section

I’ve now completed 2 sections of the Bruce Trail (there are 9)!

What’s the Bruce Trail? According to the Bruce Trail Conservancy website, the Bruce Trail is “Canada’s oldest and longest marked footpath. Running along the Niagara Escarpment in southern Ontario from Niagara to Tobermory, the Bruce Trail spans more than 890 km of main Trail and over 400 km of associated side trails.”

NIAGARA SECTION

Started the Niagara section: January 6, 2019

Finished the Niagara section: February 22, 2019

Run details

  • January 6, 2019 – Elm Street, Grimsby to Mountain View Conservation Area and back – 18.5 km (solo)
  • January 11, 2019 – Mountain View Conservation Area to Ball’s Falls Conservation Area – 18 km
  • February 8, 2019 – Ball’s Falls Conservation Area to Short Hills Provincial Park – 14.3 km
  • February 16, 2019 – Short Hills Provincial Park to Tremont Drive – 19.5 km
  • February 22, 2019 – Tremont Drive to the Southern Terminus at Queenston Heights Park – 23.8 km (solo)
Cool ice crystals in a creek under a bridge.

Run stats

  • # runs: 5
  • # solo runs: 2
  • # runs with my husband Alasdair: 0
  • # runs with friends: 3 with Laura
  • # trail angels used: 1
  • shortest run: 14.3 km
  • longest run: 23.8 km
  • average length of run: 18.8 km
Ball’s Falls

Hardest section to run: First part of Ball’s Falls run because of the ice (we hadn’t brought our spikes).

Most puzzling sign: “Passive Use Only”? I’ve since looked it up and understand what it means!

Most waterfalls: From Short Hills Provincial Park to Tremont Drive (Swayze Falls on the left, below… not sure if the right one is named).

Scariest moment: As I was running along Warner Road, I heard thundering footsteps and was scared half to death when a big coyote ran out of the woods and right in front of me (20 feet?) straight across the road at full speed and into the woods on the other side! Wow! It ran too fast and I was too spooked to grab my phone.

Wildlife sightings: The most memorable wildlife sightings were of swans, a super friendly little goat, and a coyote (see “Scariest moment”) .

With my new friend.

Windiest run: On February 8, we ran with a bitter cold wind, which was awful when running along exposed areas like roads!

A super windy area beside an open field! There was no snow anywhere else – it all blew here.

Most surprising part of the trail: I was surprised to see that I had to walk through running water in a tunnel, but I managed to keep my feet dry by staying far right and walking on the ice.

Muddiest run: February 8th starting at Ball’s Falls (after we got through the ice!).

Strangest things encountered: Mascot in St. Catharines and a shoe in a tree near Brock University.

Iciest run: It’s a toss up between the last two runs, when it was spikes on/spikes off over and over again!

Love my Kahtoola microspikes!

Favourite photo: Laura jumping!

Neat finds: Log box at 30-Mile Creek

First trail angel: My running buddy Laura’s mother-in-law Jean is responsible for a part of the trail in the Niagara Section. She drove me from the Southern Terminus at Queenston Heights Park to the start of my run at Tremont Drive, allowing me to finish the Niagara section with a big run (rather than 2 out and backs on my own). Thank you Jean!

Up next is the Toronto section!

Here I am at the Toronto Outdoor Adventure Show (with Brooke from the Bruce Trail front office), pointing to Milton on the Bruce Trail map, where I’ll be running next.

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