This hike is the southern most 5 km of the 41 km Elgin Trail which runs from Port Stanley to just north of St. Thomas following the path of Kettle Creek.
Northern Access Point – Union Road, just west of Sparta Line bridge. You can park on the south side of the road near the trailhead.
Southern Access Point – The trail ends at Mackie’s restaurant. There are numerous paid parking lots in the area.
The Elgin Trail is marked with white blazes. You will see the blazes on the south side of Union Road at the northern access point and can enter there. If you are entering the trail from the south, begin at the two people hiking cairns just south of Mackie’s Restaurant.
For the first 3 km, the trail winds through steep gullies. You will need icers in the winter and poles in the spring as the hills are steep and muddy. After approximately 3 km, you will exit the woods onto Carlow Road (turns into Union Road). As you head south on Carlow, you pass the Port Stanley Arena, the Kettle Creek Golf and Country Club, and the Port Stanley Marina. You will hit George Street where you will head west and then south on William Street and into the heart of Port Stanley. While the first part of this hike is difficult due to the hills, I have rated it moderate due to the 2 km of road walking.
- Well maintained (Summer overgrowth unknown)
- Well marked — faded blazes near northern access point
- Narrow/steep in places
- Icers in the winter
- Poles in winter/spring
Click here for my experience of hiking this hike in the winter.
Day Trip Ideas
- Hike and Dine – Mackie’s is famous for its french fries. If you’re a foodie, the Windjammer Inn serves delicious and local fare. You may, however, wish to change first (there are public rest/change rooms on the beach).
- Hike and Swim – What better way to finish a summer hike than with a dip in the lake. It’s the shallowest of the great lakes, so it’s usually warm.