Situated less than 10 minutes from the Blue Mountains Resort, and closer still to the Scandinave Spa of Blue Mountain, you’ll find Collingwood’s Scenic Caves. Dating back to 1850, these caves were first discovered by explorers in the early 1800s, before Collingwood was even incorporated. They were later settled as a farm and with additional acreage. In 1932, the caves were established as a tourist attraction. Owned by a former Toronto police chief, opening the location to the public gave visitors the chance to explore the farm as well as attend guided tours of the caves. Today, it continues to grow in popularity and it offers cave tours, as well as 420-foot suspension bridge, children’s adventure playground, a train, and now a zipline, featuring as the longest Twin Zip Line in Canada. And with winter in full swing, there is something even more exciting: exploring the park on snowshoe!
Held at night, snowshoeing tours happen underneath the stars, where the nighttime sky creates a perfect setting to experience nature in a completely different way. The park, covered in snow, is transformed into an entirely new adventure, making it a perfect addition to the Scenic Caves Adventure Tours offerings. The hike is usually about two hours in length and is led by an experienced guide who knows all the best places, all the park secrets, and even all the tricks to help you get up the hills! Because don’t think this will be a walk in the park: indeed you are in for a delightful evening workout as you strap on your shoes and gear up in your hat and mittens.
The trail takes you throughout the countryside of the park, winding through paths that intertwine amidst 100-foot tall tress of the mature forest. As you look up at the trees and try to take in the amazing surroundings, you may be surprised to hear it’s time to take a rest! Stopping at the Suspension Bridge, you will have a chance to take in the magnificent views and lookouts of the Niagara Escarpment, before crossing over the bridge (if you dare!). And with a little luck, you may even see the glowing eyes of animal nightlife.
If just reading about it is exciting you, it’s time to get out your calendar and book in your adventure. Held most Saturday nights (weather permitting) from now until March, make sure to reserve your spot so you don’t miss out. Participants are provided with a headlamp to use during the hike and are required to wear hiking boots as well as to dress in layers appropriate to the weather. The pace is moderate and the atmosphere relaxed, but it is recommended for individuals ten years of age and older. And the best part? At the end of your hike, be treated to hot chocolate or cider as well as the option to purchase additional cold snacks and hot beverages!
Winter is here to stay for a few more months, so make the most of it and explore the great outdoors on foot, under the nighttime sky, romping through the pristine snow. Head over to the Nordic Centre to book your adventure!