Hiking the Granite Ridge Trail

I said so long to my fellow photogs after a lovely weekend in a workshop shooting the fall colors.

I re-organized my gear, left my sweet little cabin at Killarney Mountain Lodge, and headed out for some hiking. This introvert needed some alone time.

my sweet little cabin post granite ridge trail hike

I knew I could manage the Granite Ridge Trail in Killarney Provincial Park in the hours of daylight left on this late September Sunday.

When I arrived at the trailhead, the lot was jammed with cars. I took a deep breath, steeled myself for a crowded trail, and set out.

Granite Ridge Trail trailhead sign

Sunlight filtered through stands of birch and red pine plantations. As I looked around, an unusual sight caught my eye. Where had it come from? Who left it here? How did it come to rest in this particular spot, so far from the road? Why was no one else taking hundreds of pictures like me? Where were the owners of all those cars?

granite ridge trail start

I continued up the trail, watching my footing on slick rock and through ankle-deep mud. I found the bulk of the other hikers streaming down as I hiked up. The ascent to the summit was short and sweet. Once there I soaked up the warm, early fall afternoon sunshine. I overlooked Georgian Bay on one side of the summit and Killarney’s famous white quartzite La Cloche hills on the other.

Georgian Bay from the summit of the Granite Ridge Trail

When I’d had my fill of vistas I moseyed back down the trail, laughing at a squirrel who scolded me from its precarious perch.

precarious red squirrel on the granite ridge trail

I headed back to the lodge for some delicious dinner (have the fish!) and a good night’s rest so that I could climb the Crack on Monday.

Just the Facts:

Trail length: 2 kilometers

Hiking time: 1.5 – 2 hours if you’re taking your time and enjoying the views

Parking: The lot for the trailhead is directly across from the George Lake main office.

Gear: A solid pair of hiking boots for the slick conditions, some snacks, a park map, a small first aid kit, and water. No cell service. Let someone know where you’re going.

Have you hiked the Granite Ridge Trail? What did you think? Let me know in the comments below.

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