Griffith Uplands Trail
This past weekend we decided to go and explore a trail and area that was new to us, the Griffith Uplands Trail. I have been to Griffith many times but have never done any hiking there. We did some research and it said that it was a 10km physically challenging hike encompassing four mountains in the Madawasaka Highlands. Keep in mind that we are in Ontario, the word “mountains” does not mean the same thing as it does in Western Canada. It is still exciting for us though because “mountains” mean lookouts, and lookouts regardless of the height almost always offer a breathtaking view.
The Greater Madawaska website describes the trail as a wilderness route that traverses a rugged Area of Natural and Scientific Interest composed of marble bedrock with open upland forests of large tooth aspen, red oak, white pine and remnant red pine. This backcountry trail features lichen covered stone barrens, glacial erratics and expansive bald rock ridges ripe with blueberries and breathtaking views of the Madawaska River Valley below. There were no blueberries because of the time of year but we did get our first snowfall!
I wouldn’t call this hike “physically challenging” like it does in it’s description but I would say that you need to wear proper footwear. With fresh snow on the ground covering already wet leaves on top of wet rock it got slippery fast. We were really thankful we were wearing the right kind of shoes for the conditions. Mike stayed upright and dry in his KEEN Durand’s, and I was warm and comfortable in my KEEN Ketchum’s. Both perfect shoes for hiking in any kind of weather.
The views of the valley along the hike were beautiful but what caught our attention the most wasn’t the view, but a collection of dream catchers and native crafts hung amongst a tree at one of the main lookouts, Godin Mountain.
We really enjoyed this hike. It does not get used that often by the looks of it which means we had it all to ourselves and I think that’s the case most of the time. It also made the trail a bit harder to see but it was well marked if you keep following the blue trail marks. Do not follow the white tin markers (trust us…), we may have gotten off track for a little bit.
I think this would be a beautiful trail for snowshoeing in the winter or hiking in the fall during peak colours.
Any time spent outside is time spent well.