Ball’s Falls Conservation Area has everything you need for a worthwhile day trip this fall.
Located just an hour and a half from the city and nestled on the scenic Niagara Escarpment, Ball’s Falls is home to beautiful forest trails and two different waterfalls.
The 200-acres of land is also rich in flora and fauna so expect some stunning autumn colours if you visit this time of year.
The Cataract Trail is probably the favourite of the five trails throughout the area. The 1.7-kilometre-loop follows Twenty Mile Creek through the forest continuing to the Upper Falls.
The Upper Falls are 35 feet (11 metres) high and can be admired from above or from the below. Just carefully follow the pathway down to the base of the waterfall.
The hiking trail also passes stone ruins of an old woolen mill.
To check out the Lower Falls, follow the 1.3-kilometre Village Trail that connects to the Cataract Trail. There's a lookout that offers a pretty view of the 90-foot-tall (27 metres) waterfall and the multi-coloured, carved-out gorge.
Just keep in mind the character of both the Upper and Lower falls may change dramatically with the seasons and can be much drier at times due to low rain levels.
In addition to the waterfalls, there's a historic village you can explore. The area was once active due to the various mills operated by the Ball family and the hamlet that sat here included about 20 inhabitants.
Development in the area below the escarpment due to the arrival of the railways led to people moving elsewhere.
Still standing within the park are the original Ball family home, an operating flour mill, lime kiln, a restored church, a blacksmith shop and a carriage shed.
There’s an $8 entry fee for adults or $6 for students when visiting the conservation area.
Make sure to be respectful during your visit. Adhere to social distancing measures by visiting with a small group and pick up your trash to leave the area just as beautiful as you found it.
by Olivia Little via blogTO