Thompson Park

1 Leslie St., Toronto
Posted on February 5, 2022 / 1089
Thompson Park
Listing Type : Cross Country Ski / Snowshoe
X-Ski km : 12
Skate km : none
Snowshoe km : 12+
Skill Level : Easy
Terrain : small hills, wide paths, open fields, flat sections
Facilities : parking, toilets/outhouse, lodging near, food close by, trailhead map, good trail signage
Trail Fee : Free

Length –  12 km

Cross Country  trail – 12  km
Skate Skiing groomed  – none km
Snowshoe trail – 12 +  km 

Skill – Easy

Terrain – Very flat and thin vegetation, slopes down to water’s edge.

Hours – Weekends daylight hours (unsure of exact times in the winter), CLOSED to the public weekdays until 4:00 p.m.

Open all holidays except Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.

Fee – Free

Trail Map – Map board at trailhead and posted signs

Facilities – Parking, outhouses, food establishments found north at Lakeshore Blvd. and Leslie St.

Highlights – Scenic, wilderness, wildlife, city skyline, shoreline

Phone – 416 661 6600 ext. 5770

Website – TRCA, Tommy Thompson Park

Current Conditions  – No grooming

Similar Trails – Bronte CreekWhitchurch & Porritt, Seneca Collage

Local Clubs – Trakkers Cross CountryHigh Park Ski Club 

Access – Drive to 1 Leslie Street and Unwin Ave., the park gate is closed, west of it is free parking in a lot and on the street, but not everywhere.

You can get here by TTC with the 83 Jones Southbound bus from Donlands subway station and walk  south 5 minutes from Commissioner St.

NO pets policy

By the shores of  Lake Ontario, Tommy Thompson Park (Leslie Street Spit) is a well-known nature getaway in Toronto. Here you can enjoy about 12 km of cross-country skiingor even more snowshoe trekkingin your own backyard. 

This large peninsula gives you plenty of open natural terrain and quiet spaces to roam, along with grand views of the city skyline and frozen marina bays and ponds in one direction, and open water in the other.

The main road, which runs down the middle, takes hikers out to a small lighthouse on a hill. Skiers cut tracks off to the side of this road.

A parallel pedestrian path that starts on the east side gets too much foot traffic to sustain ski tracks. Regardless, you can still use it if you like, or wander anywhere you wish by bushwhacking your own routes. 

For years I hesitated to go there in the winter, for a few reasons, until last weekend (and I live a mere 15 minutes away). But when my son and I finally did, it was a great experience. That was due to a major snow dump lately and a few other key factors.

You see, when the trekking is good at this park, it is a joy to be there. But there are limited opportunities and you have to act quickly.

The main issue is favourable snow conditions. Toronto has a short snow season and mild winters, so the snowbase can quickly change from ideal to slush.

This park has no grooming. For a city our size, it would benefit many if the city/TRCA could run a snowmobile to set a track. 

For some, like beginner cross-country skiers, the flat landscape is easy going and perfect to learn a few basics. But with no hills worth mentioning, more seasoned skiers may miss the thrill of fast descents. Ah, but there are plenty of kilometres you can clock if you need to train.

Snowshoeing is another activity available here. Winding paths lead you to explore down by the water’s edge and into the bush, with no need to worry that you might get lost.

Currently, as the park is still being developed, the hours are very limited. It’s closed until 4 p.m. weekdays (for construction activity, I believe), and open weekends during daylight hours. One last thing: if it’s windy, stay home. 

So there you have it: some enjoyable reasons to go to Thompson Park, and other reasons not to. When the snow hits the ground, you decide: is it time?

(And just east of here is the Beaches Boardwalk area, where some go skiing or snowshoeing along the beach after a major snowfall.)

Opening Hours
  • Monday :Closed till 4 pm
  • Tuesday :Closed till 4 pm
  • Wednesday :Closed till 4 pm
  • Thursday :Closed till 4 pm
  • Friday :Closed till 4 pm
  • Saturday :Daylight Hours
  • Sunday :Daylight Hours
Thompson Park winter ski trails

Thompson Park winter ski trails

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