Bruce Trail near Burlington

Must-do old-growth trail run

Trail / Hike

A little tougher

Half day

Grab a friend, lace up your trail runners and prepare for a 20km passage through the old-growth forests and cascading waters of Burlington’s Bruce Trail – rite of passage, that is. The Bruce Trail offers twists and turns that lead to different picturesque spots around every bend. It’s a must-do Ontario adventure.

Bruce Trail near Burlington

Bruce Trail, Burlington, ON, Canada

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Planning your run

Get back to nature in no time

Where to start

There are a lot of free parking spots along this section of the Bruce Trail where you can leave your car and get onto the trail. Try finding a spot to park on the streets that line Clappison Woods. Or, there’s also a big department store at the beginning of the run route. Keep in mind that it’s a smart idea to bring a reliable running partner along to share the highlights of this 20km out-and-back route (plus it makes the time fly by).

Your list for the long haul

The Bruce Trail is a worthy adversary for trail running, and as such requires some smart planning. Any time you’re venturing out for a long trail run, bringing along necessities like a first aid kit, a headlamp with spare batteries and ample hydration/nutrition will play a part in a successful outing. Make sure to let someone know where you’re heading and when to expect you back, and bring along a GPS watch to keep track of your route.

Perfect photo-ops

Don’t forget your means for picture-taking on this run. Between the peaks and valleys of Dundas, and the captivating waterfalls along the way (four in total), you’ll want to take a few breaks to capture some pictures. Since there are other people using the trails, make sure you stop in a spot that makes sense.

The route rundown

In total, the Bruce Trail is more than 880km long, and experiencing even a fraction of it is an accomplishment for any runner. On this particular route, you’ll start with a jaunt through Sheppard Quarry, head across the highway and then on to greener pastures that are part of a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. You’ll pass through a section of the Royal Botanical Gardens, Borer’s Falls Conservation Area and Rock Chapel Sanctuary. When you’re running through Borer’s Falls, you have the potential to link up with the Ray Lowes Side Trail, named after the “father” of the Bruce Trail.


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