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The Cataraqui Trail is a year-round, shared-use recreation trail along a decommissioned CN rail line.


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Map Key

28.5

Miles

45.8

KM

Point to Point

484' 147 m

High

389' 119 m

Low

727' 222 m

Up

685' 209 m

Down

1%

Avg Grade (1°)

8%

Max Grade (5°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Commonly Backpacked · Historical Significance · Wildlife

Section Of

Description

The 104 km non-motorized trail contains a variety of geographical features and has a historical past. Built upon the former CN rail line, the multi-use trail runs east to west and passes through a number of communities including Portland, Chaffey's Locks, Sydenham and Harrowsmith. Today, the recreational trail is used by cyclists, runners, horse riders, snowmobilers, cross-country skiers and people just out for a stroll, enjoying spotting wildlife and the natural surrounding.

There are three segments to this trail: Cataraqui Trail: West Segment, Cataraqui Trail: Central Segment, and East.

The segment of the trail begins (km 0) in the town of Smiths Falls, with one of six parking lots for convenient access. It travels past the golf course, Otter Lake (km 12), the community of Portland and Highway 15 (with parking) before arriving at Chaffey's Locks on the Rideau Canal (km 42). Here you'll find some tourist attractions as well as accommodations and a pub at the
Opinicon Resort.

This trail is part of a regional trail network and connects with K&P Trail (Frontenac Segment) and Rideau Trail: Sydenham Segment.

Flora & Fauna

When crossing the agricultural landscape, the trail right-of-way is generally bordered on both sides by a narrow, natural hedgerow of sun-tolerant native trees, shrubs and plants. This provides ideal habitat for a wide variety of insects, birds and small mammals. In swampy areas, the right-of-way offers a dry respite to the surrounding marshes much appreciated by egg-laying turtles who will take advantage of the gravelly banks along the edge of the trail.

In forested areas, the trail provides sunlit edges to the otherwise shaded forest floor. These edges permit the growth of sun-tolerant vegetation such as wild apple trees, berry bushes and grass, thereby enhancing the forage possibilities for numerous animal species. The observant trail user will encounter: a variety of birds including herons, ospreys and turkeys; several varieties of turtle including the snapping turtle; several species of snake including the endangered black rat snake; and numerous mammals such as mice, chipmunks

Contacts

Shared By:

Ali Ryder

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#56642

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Trail Rankings

#473

in Ontario

#56,642

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20 Since Dec 2, 2020
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Photos

Dramatic clouds reflecting over a wetlands.
May 10, 2021 near Perth, ON

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