Haliburton Forest is a privately owned forest that is 70,000 acres in size and has 300km of trails for cross country skiing, snowmobiling and mountain biking. In short, it is a mecca for people who love to explore on trails. If you need more convincing, swing by the website and find out what is going on. Haliburton Forest can be found roughly three hours west of Ottawa and with that in mind, my friend Patrick and I headed there for a 1 day trip to explore it as best as we could. If you are planning to go there I suggest you plan for at least a two days so you can take in more of what the area has to offer. The forest obviously has a lot of ground to cover and there are many other activities here that are worth seeing including the wolf center. The Haliburton area is also a well known retreat for artists of the potters and stained glass variety.
So back to the mountain biking part. After arriving in Patrick’s Pathfinder, unloading the bikes and paying the fee to enter the forest, we spent the day biking out as far as we could before having to come back to the truck. In all we did about 45-48km of trail biking which is quite a bit for mountain bikes. We got to experience a good mix of technical trails, single track, access roads and steep hills. So much to explore and so little time.
Haliburton Forest is definitely on my “have to get back there and explore more” list. I’ll be going back when I can be sure to have more time to explore more of the trails and spend an evening or two exploring the area and what is has to offer. I think the highlight of this trip for me was when Patrick decided that he wanted to try stunt jump with his mountain bike. The goal was to jump from off the shoreline into the lake with his bike but it didn’t quite go a smoothly as planned. Even though I still chuckle when I think of it, I have to give him kudos to him for trying it though. What a trooper.
I do plan on updating this entry with more information when I return to Haliburton Forest and I’m hoping that it will be within the next year or two.