WESTPORT, Sept. 20, 2022 – Cooler nights and shorter days are once again painting our forests the vibrant reds and golds that can only mean one thing: Fall has arrived.
And what better place to embrace your autumnal awe than at Foley Mountain Conservation Area in Westport? With stunning views from Spy Rock Lookout as well as 10 kilometres of trails through forests and wetlands, visitors have endless opportunities to immerse themselves in the season’s wonder.
But as the park’s busiest season ramps up, visitors are wise to plan ahead. To avoid big crowds and make the most of your trip, consider:
- Choosing an off-peak time, like weekdays or early mornings
- Parking further down the park road and hiking back to Spy Rock. The colours are worth it!
- Bringing change for the parking machine, or purchasing ahead with code 5204 on paybyphone.com
- Planning to spend the day and explore the entire park – even some of the more remote trails.
“This is such a spectacular time of year to be outdoors, especially in a forest like ours,” said Foley Mountain site supervisor Rebecca Whitman. “We are thrilled to see a renewed interest in getting outside and embracing nature, but it does mean visitors need to be more prepared during busy times of the year.”
Whitman recommended trying trails beyond the Spy Rock lookout to get your fall colour fix. The Orange Maple Trail, for example, starts at the interpretive centre and offers a spectacular show in the fall with its many towering maple, ash and poplar trees along its 2.3 km loop. Hikers can even follow it back to Spy Rock for a peek at the views before they head home.
The White Pine Trail is a great option for hikers looking for more of a challenge. Parking at the group camping site, they can connect to White Pine using the Blue Trail. From there, they’ll find towering white pines and stunted oak trees high on the ridge, mixed with excellent fall foliage as they pick their way back down the mountain.
"It's a beautiful part of the park to go into," said Whitman.
Foley's colours usually peak around Thanksgiving, give or take a week. Please bring a mask for crowded areas and follow all directional signage on the trails. If you are feeling ill or have been told to isolate, please stay home.
For more information about visiting Foley Mountain in the fall visit www.rvca.ca/foley-fall-colours or email . You can also follow us on Facebook at @FoleyMountain or @RideauValleyConservationAuthority. You can also follow @RideauValleyCA on Twitter and Instagram.