Grey County’s waterfall tour draws many visitors to the region in the spring and summer months, but winter is a unique and amazing time to visit 5 of our 8 waterfalls. With the Niagara Escarpment running through our Grey County backyard, rivers plunge over cliff faces to create beautiful cascades. In the winter months, these cascades often freeze solid and with no leaves on the surrounding trees, the photographic possibilities are endless. This winter put on your snowshoes, pack a thermos of hot chocolate, grab your camera and experience our amazing winter waterfalls
The first step to planning your winter waterfall tour is downloading our Winter Waterfall Guide. This printable guide offers directions and descriptions of our five winter-safe waterfalls: Inglis Falls, Weavers Creek Falls, Hoggs Falls, McGowan Falls and Jones Falls. Using the guide, you can choose which waterfalls you want to visit based on walking distance to the falls and the type of cascade you’ll see. Remember, walking times are generally longer on snowshoes. It can be slow going after a fresh snowfall so always leave extra time when planning your visit.
Get the Gear
With a winter waterfall in mind, you’ll need to be sure that you have the proper gear. Trails can be snowy and icy and snowshoes are great for reaching the frozen cascades more easily. A pair of ski poles can also be a big help. If you need to rent snowshoes, there are several local options. In Owen Sound, rentals are available at BikeFace. In Meaford, Ride on Bikes rents snowshoes while Slalom Gate Powered by Squire John’s at the base of Georgian Peaks also offers rentals. In Hepworth, Suntrail Source for Adventure can hook you up and just into Bruce County, Thorncrest Outfitters in Southampton also has rentals. You will want to dress for the weather, in layers with warm winter gear and a backpack filled with snacks, water, your camera and a cell phone if possible.
Visiting waterfalls in the winter is amazing but it’s key to respect the difference in trail conditions that snow and ice can bring. Cracks and crevices on the escarpment are harder to see beneath fresh snow, so always stay on marked trails and be mindful of falling ice and snow, staying well back from cliff edges. Be sure to wear appropriate footwear and consider snowshoes when the hike to the falls is longer. Remember that during the winter months some waterfalls may be more difficult to access and some parking lots may not be plowed, especially immediately after a heavy snowfall. *Please note that Indian Falls and the Holstein Dam are not accessible in the winter months.
Post-Waterfall Treats and Eats
One of the best parts of venturing out on a winter adventure is heading back inside to warm up and enjoy a well-earned treat. Thankfully, Grey County’s amazing local food and drink scene is ready and waiting for you after you explore our winter waterfalls. Consider a hot cocoa with chili at Casero Kitchen Table in Owen Sound, warm up with a Meredith’s Ginger Latte at the Ravenna Country Market or visit Georgian Hills Vineyards or Coffin Ridge Boutique Winery for a wine and cheese tasting plate by the fire. For more ideas, visit the Eat section of our website.
Stay the Night
If you’d like to see several of our waterfalls, consider spending the night in Grey County for a weekend of adventure. There are many small accommodation option that will put you within reach of our many waterfalls. A stay at Best Western Inn on the Bay or Cobble Beach Resort & Spa puts you close by to Hoggs Falls and even our Owen Sound waterfalls (Inglis Falls, Jones Falls, Weavers Creek Falls) within reach. The Village at Blue Mountain offers several great accommodation options and there are many great B&B’s around the Beaver Valley. The city of Owen Sound has also offers a wide range of accommodation options. Visit the Stay section of our website.
This Winter Waterfall guide has been developed to assist in planning your visit to waterfalls throughout Grey County. Users of this guide are responsible for their own safety and use these routes and trails at their own risk. Each user should consider not only weather, road and trail conditions, but also his/her own level of fitness and experience. Please note that some waterfalls are harder to access during the winter months than others. Some parking lots may not be plowed, especially immediately after a heavy snowfall. The trails suggested are not maintained by the County of Grey, and caution should be practiced when using them. This guide is not intended as a guide for children or pets.
Grey County Tourism and others involved in developing this guide are not responsible for any loss or damage any user may suffer as a result of using this guide. The County of Grey, and their elected officials, directors, officers, employees, owners, volunteers and staff do not warrant the safety of any route, highway, road, street, trail or designated waterfall area shown in this guide. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this guide, inaccuracies or changes may occur and the County of Grey is not responsible for any variations from the above information.
Waiver of Liability - Having read the foregoing material and as a condition of using this Winter Waterfall Snowshoe Guide, the users of this Guide waive, release, and discharge, for themselves and their heirs, executors, administrators, successors and assigns, any rights or claims which the users have or may hereafter have against the directors, officers, employees, owners, volunteers and staff of the County of Grey and other sponsoring businesses and organizations, for any and all damages which may be sustained by the users directly or indirectly in connection with their use of this Winter Waterfall Snowshoe Guide or the designated routes and trails.