15 km; revised - now about 14 km with trail changes
4.5 - 5 h
Hilly in places; trail offers great views along the escarpment edge
Entrance fee at Hilton CA-$6.50 adults; $5.50 seniors.
Washrooms at the Kelso Conservation Area (in season)
Picnic tables in the Kelso Conservation Area area; atop Kelso Bluffs -great views
21Aug2007, 06May2008, 10May2008, 05Aug2013, 05Jun2014
Not wheelchair accessible
Oct 2010: A reroute has taken place near (007) on a steep section of the trail to control erosion from heavy use by hikers and bikers. The new reroute adds 680 m with a small southern loop that takes hikers through a pleasant woodland and some of the old quarry associated with the lime kilns.
Parking is no longer allowed for hikers in the golf course lot. Instead park at nearby Hilton Falls CA on Campbellville Road. From the Hilton lot, take the Philip Gosling Side Trail (0.7 km) to connect with the main Bruce Trail to continue the hike.
August 2011: Parking is once again allowed on the Halton County Inn golf course. See Hike Comments below for details. Mar 2018: Due to new ownership, parking here is no longer allowed until further notice.
You can stop at any point within Kelso CA and return. To shorten the hike to 6-7 km, park in the pay lot on Steeles Ave just south of Bell School Line. Take the Steeles Ave ST along the unopened Bell School Line road allowance to waypoint 009. Turn right and follow the loop around to 010, 009, and then back to the parking lot.
Kelso Lake; escarpment edge; lookout points
Becomes the Glen Eden Ski & Snowboarding Centre in the winter
The Kelso Conservation Area
The Kelso Conservation Area hike takes place in a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts at this 980-acre park with plenty of activities and sights to enjoy. Indulge in a swim at the sandy beach on the 50 acre lake with certified lifeguards, test your fishing abilities in the clear stocked lake, or rent a canoe, kayak or paddleboat and enjoy the tranquility of the Kelso waters. Mountain bikers can test their skills on the 16 km of marked trails lining the majestic Niagara Escarpment or hikers can trek the rugged Bruce Trail. Hundreds of picnic tables dot the rolling landscape and shelters are available for company and family picnics. Kelso also offers pristine campsites and hosts many special events throughout the year.
The Halton Region Museum is located within Kelso Conservation Area. A former pioneer homestead, the museum interprets the community’s history through exhibits, programs and heritage events.
Kelso is truly a park for all seasons. During the winter, Glen Eden Ski and Snowboard Centre comes alive with skiers and snowboarders carving, sliding and having fun. With 100% snowmaking, complete night lighting, 5 lifts, 12 slopes, a quarter pipe, great lesson programs and snow tubing, Glen Eden is close to home and one of the best winter recreational areas in Ontario.
The hike begins in a wooded area descending down to Appleby Line and then entering the Kelso Conservation Area. Here it crosses the railway track via an overhead covered bridge. Look for nesting birds in the rafters. My favourite part of the hike is when the trail enters the woods and soon offers really fantastic views as the trail hugs the edge of the escarpment. A big loop anchors the hike which then returns along the same route.