Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail

Difficulty
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Easy
Duration
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
2-2.5h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
8.2 km
Elevation
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
111 m
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Directions to Trailhead
Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail

The Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail Hike is a fun adventure in Niagara Falls that will provide a bit of respite from the tourists and allow you to reconnect with nature. The trail sets out from Queenston Heights Park and leads you through a wonderful stretch of woodland terrain along the escarpment. This route is a great way to spend a weekend afternoon outdoors while getting some exercise in a peaceful setting.

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Route Description for Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail

While the Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail hike isn’t an overly difficult adventure in the Niagara area, it does feature some uneven terrain and sections of uphill hiking that can be a bit strenuous. Make sure to wear proper hiking footwear to stay comfortable while out on the trail Additionally, as the trail borders public and private property, there are a number of no trespassing signs along the route. Pay attention to these and try to stick to the main trail to avoid accidentally straying onto private property.

With charming forest scenery, some lovely views, and interesting historical sites, the Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail is a fantastic hike that suits a wide variety of outdoor enthusiasts. Those with historical interests can check out the various monuments in the park to learn about the events that unfolded before, during, and after the Battle of Queenston Heights that took place here during the War of 1812, and anyone looking to reconnect with nature and get a bit of exercise can explore the scenic and rugged expanse of the Niagara Escarpment. This hike is perfect for a fun weekend excursion if you find yourself in the Niagara area.

Setting out from the west end of the parking area, pick up the second trail on the left that leads west into the cover of the forest. This is the beginning of the iconic Bruce Trail, which stretches 890km to the northwest and ends in Tobermory at the tip of the Bruce Peninsula. Continue to the west for the next 2.1 km, following along the trail as it traverses the elevated position atop the rocky Niagara Escarpment that was formed thousands of years previous during the last ice age.

After arriving at a fork in the path, head to the right and continue straight along the trail as it passes through the charming stretch of forest that borders an old quarry. Take some time to appreciate the peaceful atmosphere of the woodland landscape, as you eventually arrive at another junction in 1.0 km. Follow this to the right to begin a brief descent of the hillside and arrive at a junction with the Laura Secord Trail.

Follow this to the left and continue south along the forested slope of the hill for the next 0.8 km to arrive at the terminus of this hiking route. From here, turn back and retrace your footsteps up the escarpment and back through the forest to arrive back at Queenston Heights Park where you began. If you have some time to spare, make sure to explore the park and brush up on the interesting events that unfolded here during the War of 1812, in addition to experiencing some stunning views overlooking the flowing waters of the Niagara River before heading home having completed the Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail hike.

Trail Highlights

Queenston Heights Park

Situated atop the rocky Niagara Escarpment, Queenston Heights Park is a lovely recreation area that is filled with beautiful scenery and important historical sites. Monuments to both British general Isaac Brock and Laura Secord commemorate the events of the War of 1812, during which American forces were repelled from Canadian land at the Battle of Queenston Heights.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there parking at Queenston Heights Park?

Queenston Heights Park features an ample amount of parking spaces towards the south end of the park, with other parking areas being located near Brock’s Monument.

What was the significance of the Battle of Queenston Heights?

The American defeat at the hands of British and Canadian forces at the Battle of Queenston Heights was a turning point in the War of 1812, causing American generals to hesitate and abandon their plans for invading Canada.

Insider Hints for Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail

  • Wear proper hiking footwear for this adventure, as there are some rocky and uneven stretches of trail. The route also gets very muddy during the shoulder seasons.
  • Pay attention to the no trespassing signs along the route and keep to the main trail.
  • Head a bit further east after your hike to enjoy some amazing views of the Niagara River.

Getting to the Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail Trailhead

To reach the trailhead for the Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail from the Whirlpool Golf Course, head east on Niagara Parkway for 4.9 km and take the third exit at the roundabout onto Portage Road. Follow this for 500 m and turn right to enter the parking lot.

Route Information

  • When to do

    Year-Round

  • Backcountry Campsites

    No

  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    Yes

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    Moderate

  • Route Type

    Out and back

Queenston Heights via Bruce Trail Elevation Graph

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