Valens Lake Ice Now Open!

January 14, 2022
Valens Lake is ready to welcome you for on ice activities, including ice fishing and skating. Have questions? We have you covered! Ice Fishing FAQ The ice is ready, now it's time to fish! Click below for the answers to your top questions. Ice Skating FAQ There's nothing quite like…

Staying Safe this Winter

January 11, 2022
Winter is a great time to get out and explore! Enjoying the outdoors in a different season can be a whole new experience! Getting out in winter however, presents its own unique hazards that anyone enjoying the outdoors should be aware of before heading out. Know the Dangers of Hazard…

New Year, New Adventures!

January 3, 2022
The start of a new year signals new beginnings and a chance to start fresh! Resolution or not, the new year is a great time to try and head outside a little more and even have a go at something new. Walking in nature has been linked to enhanced mental…

Get Smart About Salt!

December 9, 2021
Salt is an economic and effective way for keeping surfaces clear of ice in the winter. It is important however, to manage its use so it will have the least negative impact on our environment. Did you know? Salt can cause damage to buildings, vehicles and your footwear or clothing…

Discover Mount Albion and the Chippewa Trail

November 30, 2021
We all know the ‘big’ conservation areas and trails, but there is a hidden gem on the Stoney Creek Mountain just waiting to be discovered! The Chippewa Trail and Mount Albion Conservation Area offers hiking, biking, birding and exploring opportunities. The Chippewa Rail Trail Parking lot is located at Mount…

Sustainable Gift Giving

November 25, 2021
Another Christmas season is here, and with it comes the big question of what to get for friends and family. Not to worry! We have some great, sustainable tips and ideas for you! Experience Trying to avoid giving more 'junk' that ends up getting stored away? Give the gift of…

HCA Conservation Areas and Foraging

October 26, 2021
Foraging and harvesting mushrooms and other wild edible plants has become a popular hobby among outdoor enthusiasts and naturalists alike. The practice has spiked in popularity as more people are discovering outdoor spaces to enjoy and explore. Conservation areas owned and operated by HCA protect significant and sensitive natural areas,…

Leave the Leaves!

October 19, 2021
Wondering what to do with all those leaves that have fallen off the trees, or looking for a great reason to skip raking? Aside from saving time and energy, there are many other benefits to just leaving the leaves! What are the benefits? Leaves insulate and protect plants in the…

Saltfleet – Your Key to a Hamilton Mountain Adventure

October 12, 2021
So, you’re looking to visit a waterfall, but you’d like a short hike too, or perhaps you’re looking for a much longer trek to take in some sights and test your endurance? Maybe you’ve heard how great the Bruce Trail is, winding through the Niagara Escarpment Biosphere reserve? You love…

Your Guide to Visiting the Spencer Gorge

October 4, 2021
So, you’ve seen all the beautiful photos of Dundas Peak and the surrounding area; or maybe the stunning views from Tew Falls and Webster Falls lookout platforms. Now you’ve decided to visit. Here’s your guide to the booking process and what to expect once you get on site. A reservation…

Fall in Love With HCA!

September 22, 2021
The air is crisp and the leaves are changing colour – fall is officially here! Everyone loves to get out this time of year to enjoy those cooler temperatures and fall foliage, so we break down our areas into ones that are a little quieter and the ones that are…

Fall Colour Updates

September 21, 2021
Trying to find the perfect time to get out and see the fall colours can be tricky. It's a balance between getting out when they have changed colour enough, but before the leaves start to fall too much. HCA does not officially monitor our conservation area's level of fall colours,…

Aquatic Monitoring and Electrofishing

September 9, 2021
Have you spotted our staff out in local creeks and streams and wondered what they are doing? Although they may look a bit like they are ghost-busting, they are actually electrofishing as part of HCA’s Aquatic Resource Monitoring Program. What is the Aquatic Resource Monitoring Program? It is HCA’s long-term…

Managing Phragmites at HCA Areas

August 26, 2021
HCA staff have recently been working on managing invasive Phragmites at Valens Lake and Fletcher Creek by removing them through the cut-to-drown and spading method. Why are Phragmites a problem? Phragmites grow in dense stands that have the potential to completely outcompete and crowd out native species. These dense stands…

Sustainable Back to School Tips

August 24, 2021
It’s hard to believe that it’s already time to talk about back to school! The last couple of years have been a rollercoaster ride for parents and students alike, and whether you and your kids are nervous, excited or both, about the return to school, we have some tips to…

Your Guide to a Day at the Beach

July 11, 2021
HCA offers 4 beautiful and sandy beaches just waiting for you to set up and enjoy the sunshine and cool water. Fifty Point and Confederation Beach Park are both located on the shores of Lake Ontario, while Christie Lake and Valens Lake each have beach areas at their reservoirs. Before…

Dogs and HCA Areas

June 18, 2021
Bringing your furry, four-legged family members out on a hike can make for a great day in nature! We know our dogs love the outdoors just as much as we do but when heading into our areas, there are several important things to remember.

Your Guide to a Hike in Nature

June 18, 2021
With almost 150km of trails at HCA areas, there are so many places waiting for you to discover and explore! Our trails have a lot of variety and range from short to long, easy to difficult with some paved and others on packed dirt or gravel. The best way to…

Japanese Knotweed Control

June 18, 2021
If you have been out visiting the Copetown Summit Bog parking lot along the rail trail recently, you will have noticed that our staff have been busy at work removing a population of invasive Japanese Knotweed. Staff have been using the tarping method to help control the Knotweed, and this…

Tick Safety

June 16, 2021
Just the thought of ticks can give the heebie jeebies, but don’t let that deter you from enjoying time outside. With that said, it is still important to be smart about ticks and the risk they pose. What You Need to Know About Ticks Ticks are bugs that live in…

Pack In – Pack Out

June 9, 2021
Nothing ruins a day in nature quite like spotting garbage where it shouldn’t be. Our staff work hard to keep our areas clean, and the best way to keep them clean is making sure garbage ends up in the trash. How can you help? Leave your garbage at home. When…