Devil’s Pulpit and Hoffman Lime Kiln

Devil’s Pulpit and Hoffman Lime Kiln

So, a little while ago, while searching for a new and interesting place to hike–I came upon this article from the Globe and Mail

Ten reasons to ditch Toronto (for a day)

Spring has not yet sprung here, despite the warm(ish) temperatures.  Everything is drab and grey.  So I was searching for a place with a view…of something…..anything….. For elevation gain, you can’t beat the Devil’s Pulpit on the Bruce Trail.  Do you know the Bruce Trail?  It’s this ridge of rock, a cliff face, that runs all the way from Niagara Falls to beyond Tobermory. (For more info on the Bruce Trail, go HERE)

Ontario Trails official trail details

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It looked so innocent at first…..

The Globe and Mail called the hike to the top of Devil’s Pulpit ‘the MOST INTENSE QUADRICEPS WORKOUT on the Bruce Trail’.

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But the trail starts up–immediately

Now, I have to warn you, this trail is not part of a conservation area or a provincial park. There are no picnic areas and no attendants at any gate.  It is simply a section of the Bruce Trail, so while it is well-signed, it is sandwiched between parcels of private property, so please do stay on the trail out of courtesy.

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check out the still-lingering snow under the giant boulders

It’s not a long trail, either–but it is entirely up or down, making you scramble over and around boulders sized from washing machines to small houses.  The trail is absolutely a workout and well worth the trip to Caledon.

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And up some more

We didn’t really know what to expect from this trail.  There isn’t a terrible lot of information about it.  But we were surprised, and impressed!  The forest was a moss-covered utopia, and even with no signs of spring at all, the moss covered everything—it was a sea of soft, squishy greenery.

 

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Check out this cute little Walking Fern Asplenium rhizophyllum

 

And the view?  Stellar.

 

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The Forks of the Credit Valley

There’s a whole side trail leading out to the old abandoned Lime Kiln, a very cool place to poke and climb around…

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It only looks flat.  It drops off right past the far boulder…

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Part of the remainder of the kiln on the right, and the chimney remains on the left.

The whole area around the old Lime Kiln has gone back to forest.  It’s such an odd thing in the middle of the woods…

For the history on the Hoffman Lime Kiln

Hoffman Lime Kiln

Was a great hike with my girls, who are back home from University.  But it was brief.  And there wasn’t anywhere flat enough to eat a picnic lunch.

We headed over to the Cheltenham Badlands, thinking we’d picnic there.  It was only about 10 minutes drive back the way we’d come from, and I’d always wanted to check them out.  that, alas, was a complete disappointment…

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It SHOULD have looked like this

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But instead looks like this now.

I don’t advise going there.  Too many people have caused too much erosion.  The entire place is fenced off, the trails closed.  Lunch-bag letdown.

Instead, we drove another 10 minutes to Terra Cotta Conservation area to eat our sandwiches on a park bench by the little lake.  We didn’t actually spend any time hiking around, though–we’d had enough for one day.

There’s always the next weekend.

Next weekend could be anywhere within a 2(ish) hour drive from Toronto (ok, from Ajax–I’m in Ajax)

Whatever the “google machine” finds for me.

To all of you people blogging with story lines like ‘my 10 favorite places to hike in Ontario’, I am listening.  I will go there.

Location:  Chisholm Street, off of Forks of the Credit Road, Caledon

Distance from Greater Toronto Area:  About 45 minutes

Trails:  

  • Devil’s Pulpit 1.4 km (out & back)

  • Hoffman Lime Kiln Side Trail:  1.2 km (out & back)

TRAIL MAP for purchase Bruce Trail Map #15

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