Whitchurch Conservation Area has always been my secret go-to cross-country ski spot when I had to get out of town after a good snowfall.
Close and central to Toronto, it has a few easy paths to loop around. Rustic and quiet though with few amenities, one has to be self-sufficient and likely cut your own track or follow someones else foray. There is no grooming here in this woodlot.
Whitchurch is rather a small place with a pond, shelter and outhouses but soon the narrow trail leads you to the Robinson Tract south of it. Here is where you can open up on wider forest roads.
For Skate skiers willing to try, use the Warden Ave entrance as it starts as a wide access road. There are hikers in here but not too many tracking around.
Most of this area is flat, with a little hilly tighter trail along the south fence that beginners may want to avoid.
For the Snowshoe crowd, it offers an easy walk on the trail or cut your own. You cannot get lost in here. Eventually, you will get to a horse ranch, monster homes or the road.
The other woodlot north up the road on the map is the Porritt Tract & Pangman Springs area. You will find this similar yet with larger hills. Not so much fun for some but better for exercise.
One of the closest opportunities to ski in the woods out of Toronto, it also suffers from lack of snow in the last few years. So enjoy it while you can…
Use your “rock skies” if in doubt as there is a gravel bed underneath leaving from the west entrance if the snowbase is thin.
The last thing — it is hard to estimate the total trail length in here, even the map does not show everything.
Photos taken only at Whitchurch…and was it ever beautiful as it snowed.