Grindstone Creek, Waterdown Falls, and Smokey Hollow

Location of the hike

(These hiking details are a few years old now, you might want to double-check them with the Official Bruce Trail – here’s a useful PDF of the hikes in the area.)

  • Hamilton/Ancaster Heights, Ontario, Canada
  • Start Bruce Trail Reference Map #9 Waterdown – Iroquoia Club km 76.5
  • Far End of Hike Map #9 Waterdown Iroquoia Club km 72.9
  • Total Bruce Trail Distance 3.6 km

Driving and Parking

  • 80 Mill St S, Waterdown, ON L0R 1R0 – Plus code: 84J7+94 Hamilton, Ontario
  • Latitude: 43.331029874805104, Longitude: -79.88717834199517
  • About 45 minutes south west from Toronto, just north of the 403 on Waterdown Road – exit 78
  • The parking lot will be on your left (south side of Mill Street)

Hike details

This hike is a loop, half on the Bruce Trail, and half on side streets. It took us about 2 hours, including stops for pictures along the way. The park itself had a fair number of people in it on a Saturday, but after hiking for about 30 minutes there weren’t many people around.

Once you leave the parking lot you are at Waterdown Falls. An historic marker describes how the area got its name, etc…

Follow the Bruce Trail to the left (downstream) of the falls. After descending a steep hill you will follow a set of rapids. There wasn’t a lot of water flowing in October, but we did stop for a picture:

Grindstone Creek in October

The trail continues a ways along the river then heads east (to your left), away from the river for a while. A small bridge (at km 74.6) crosses the river, taking you to the west side. It took us about 45 minutes from the start to reach this point.

The Bruce trail continues west, then makes a sharp left turn (north), to avoid a large marsh. Continue counter-clockwise around the marsh then up the hill.

Eventually the Bruce trail will make its way to Snake Road (km 72.9). It took us about 35 minutes between the bridge and Snake Road.

At this point we will leave the Bruce trail and head north (to your right) up the hill along Snake Road. We’re walking in a circular, clockwise loop, so we will be mostly turning right.

After about 10 minutes of walking you’ll pass the Notre Dame school.

You’ll cross over the railway bridge, then turn right onto Main Street, then past tennis courts.

Turn right on Union, down the hill and back to Mill St.

Once again, turn right, under the railway bridge, and you’ll find yourself back in the parking lot.

The walk back to the parking lot from Snake Road and the Bruce Trail took us about 35 minutes.

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