This walk is about 5km and is a there-and-back trail (no loop). It is very family friendly. Here is a Google Map of the walk.
This is a fantastic place to get a big ol’ dose of Carolinian forest in the fall. The trail follows the Humber River, so there are excellent sparkly views of the water from bridges and riverbanks. You may even catch some salmon swimming upstream to spawn right now. For this walk, we parked for free at the Lambton Arena and ambled across a small playground to the forest, but you could also start at the other end at James Gardens.
Salmon Run- Bonus Walk!
The best place I’ve seen the salmon run is at Etienne Brule Park, which is a bit south of Lambton Woods on the Humber River Recreational Trail. You can watch these giant fish leap up tiny waterfalls all along the river while people cheer them on. Apparently, the Pacific Salmon are stocked in the river by the city for fishing, but unlike the natural Atlantic Salmon that once lived in the river, they die once they spawn, so you can also find some fascinatingly gross stuff by the waterside. The event goes on for the entire month of October and you can visit the Toronto Region and Conservation Authority for more locations and info.
This is my happy place. We stopped here for coffee and pastries on the way in and I was surprised to find that they had opened up a second location a few doors down just for this purpose. Now that there are two locations — one for the cafe and the other a cheese monger/grocery store/fancy sweets place/pre-made meal heaven— there are even less line ups and crowding. I would highly recommend going to both spots. Be sure to sample the caramelized onion cheddar cheese for maximum umami taste bud joy.
This is the biggest fire pit I have ever seen in a city park and it offers great views of the forest, the river and even a bit of the city in the background. Bring on the autumn bonfires!
James Gardens is so very big and stunning that it could be a destination on its own. The variety and health of the ornamental plants on display is a sight to behold, and with the trees changing colours in the background, I just…I can’t even. Great picnic spot with a few benches around for staring slack jawed at all the beauty.
I'd love to hear about your favourite fall walks and places to watch the salmon run, so please add in the comments or the Forum Discussion.