Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area

Four seasons of recreation & nature appreciation.

A hub for outdoor recreation enthusiasts and those seeking to have a more profound experience communing with the natural environment mere minutes from the hustle and bustle of the city, Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area is a focal point for environmental and conservation activity and learning within the Cataraqui Watershed. Encompassing 394 hectares of land just north of Highway 401 within the boundaries of the City of Kingston, the property features areas of marsh, field, and forest habitat for nature appreciation, education, and outdoor recreation facilities.

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About Little Cataraqui Creek

Besides the diversity of plant and animal life on the property, Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area is also headquarters for Cataraqui Conservation. Our Administration Office and main workshop are located within the Conservation Area as well as the Outdoor Centre, the base of operations for our education programs as well as our public programs offering curated educational family programs on the weekends during the fall, winter and spring.

Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area has a daily admission of $5 for adults, $3.50 for children 12 and under, with maximum fee of $15 per car (special event pricing may apply). The entrance fee can be paid online before your visit or at the gate house, via the self-serve box at the gate house with exact change, with a gate attendant when on duty (cash/credit/debit), or at the Outdoor Centre between 9:00 am to 4:00 pm during the week. Annual Passes are available for $85 and provide admission to Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area for one year. Revenue from the gate fee and annual passes help us maintain the property and offer our special public programming like maple madness, guided hikes, guest speakers, groomed ski trail, winter equipment rentals and much more. The conservation area is open during daylight hours only.

The Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area’s Outdoor Centre is the base for our public programs and includes facilities such as a snack bar, observation tower, washrooms, equipment rentals and two meeting rooms. The facility is available for rent for meetings and events. See our outdoor centre rental page for details.

  • Hiking/walking trails
  • Education programs for all ages
  • Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, including groomed, track-set trails and weekend lessons
  • Fishing, in accordance with MNR regulations
  • Picnic areas, privies, and benches
  • Bird watching and nature appreciation

Winter is the most popular time of year at Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area. We have facilities for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, highlighted by 13 kilometres of groomed trails, with Trails 1 to 4 track-set for classic style cross-country skiing. Equipment is available for rent at the Outdoor Centre and cross-country ski lessons are also available.

Visit our ski and snowshoe rental page.

In early spring we operate a demonstration sugar bush as part of Maple Madness, which is one of our most popular public programs. It takes place during March each year, bringing more than 10,000 visitors through our gates. As well, thousands of area students participate in curriculum-based Maple Madness programs with our education department. For details visit our Maple Madness page

Sights at Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area

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Activities & Facilities

Help us protect Little Cataraqui Creek and make sure all visitors have an enjoyable experience

Hiking

Please stay on the marked trails. Do not walk on the groomed & track-set trails, stick to Trail 5 and the service roads.

Dog Walking

Dogs must be on a leash at all times for the safety of your pet and courtesy to other visitors.

Cross-country Skiing

Trails 1 to 4 are groomed and track-set for classic-cross country skiing when conditions permit (rentals available on weekends)

Snowshoeing

Trail 5 and the service roads are maintained for snowshoeing (rentals available on weekends). Do not walk on the groomed trails.

Nature appreciation

Wetlands, woods, meadows and shoreline areas provide many opportunities for wildlife viewing

Native Plant Nursery

$3.50 for children, $5 for adults, maximum fee of $15 per vehicle. Please see 'Entrance Fee' button above for payment options.

Outdoor Centre

Facility rentals, washrooms, snack bar, annual passes, trail information. Mon. to Fri. 9am - 4pm

Privies

Located at the warming huts and in the sugar bush.

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