Crawford Lake

3115 Conservation Rd., Milton
Posted on February 11, 2022 / 1193
Crawford Lake
Listing Type : Cross Country Ski / Snowshoe
X-Ski km : 5
Skate km : none
Snowshoe km : 4
Skill Level : Easy
Terrain : small hills, wide paths, gentle hills
Facilities : parking, chalet, toilets/outhouse, lodging near, drinking water, food close by, good trail signage, gear rentals
Trail Fee : Yes

Length –  9 km

Cross Country  – 5 km 
Skate Skiing groomed  – none
Snowshoe trail – 4 km 

Skill – Beginner

Terrain –  Mostly flat, wide paths with gentle hills, one big hill

Hours –  9 am – 5 pm 

Fee –  Adult pass $10.70, kids $7.35

Trail Map –  Map board at trailhead, well-signed maps at junctions, no paper map

Facilities –  Parking, visitor centre, washrooms, snacks, snowshoe rentals (not in 2022)

Highlights – Scenic, boardwalk, wood carvings, cliffs, Iroquoian longhouses, Nassagaweya Canyon

Phone –  905 854 0234

Website –  Conservation Halton

Current Conditions – no grooming

Similar Trails –   Hilton Falls,  Mountsberg,   Bronte Creek

Local Clubs –  Halton Outdoor Club,  Mono Nordic

Access –  From Hwy 401, exit south through Campbellville on Guelph Line 1, then drive to into the park to 3115 Conservation Road, Milton. 

For a family outing, Crawford Lake, west of Milton, offers several winter activities in a natural forest setting. It has a little bit of cross-country skiing and snowshoeing for beginners to try, plus scenic hikes to take in.

My intentions were to get out of the house and city with my family, after what seemed like weeks stuck at home with pandemic boredom.

Our visit to Crawford started with a hike around the small lake of the same name to warm up. A 1 km boardwalk path built on limestone boulders surrounds this body of water. It’s not a trail you can ski nor does it require snowshoes. 

Next, we strapped on our skis and did the two small loops. These are not groomed and the snow was all tramped down by hikers; we saw no ski tracks to follow. After a snowfall would be better. We spotted numerous large wooden carvings of animals along the route.

The red 1.5 km Woodlands Trail is an easy, fairly flat trek on a wide path. The green Pine Ridge Trail, at 3.6 km was more enjoyable and scenic. It’s a moderate ski with a big hill (some may choose to walk), and a lookout. On the backside, through the trees, the cliff drops down to a quarry and mushroom farm.

We then trekked some of the brown 3.4 km snowshoe trail. It is laid out as a grid in between rows of evergreenspleasant but monotonous. So we took on some other trails for hikers that led us to the cliffs and big boulders of the Niagara Escarpment. 

The Bruce Trail passes through here connecting you to many more kilometres. (You might be wondering if you can Nordic ski them; I hear not very easily, if at all.)

I hesitated to post this location, as it would be not my first choice for exercise and training. This is not a place for serious Nordic action. Rather, it’s a convenient jaunt for casual skiers and a place to let the kids loose, close to home.

This conservation area is centred between Guelph, Cambridge, and the west side of Oakville and Mississauga, just south of Hwy 401, a mere 30-minute drive for many.

There is a visitor centre and an Iroquoian village to visit, and you can do more trekking at two similar parks that are close by: Hilton Falls and Mountsberg.

Currently, with Covid restriction issues, buildings may be closed and there are no snowshoe rentals this season. You also have to book a visit time online to get a park day pass. 

Opening Hours
  • Monday :9 to 5 pm daily
  • Tuesday :9 to 5 pm daily
  • Wednesday :9 to 5 pm daily
  • Thursday :9 to 5 pm daily
  • Friday :9 to 5 pm daily
  • Saturday :9 to 5 pm daily
  • Sunday :9 to 5 pm daily
Crawford Lake trail map

Crawford Lake trail map

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