In our hectic life, relaxing and unwinding with nature is highly important. Nature helps us reduce anxiety and stress and restores our mental well-being.
The urban jungle where we live has a lot of pollutants in the air, and they affect our health by increasing stress levels, anxiety, and the production of stress hormones.
We need access to outdoor recreation, well-maintained national parks, or nature conservation areas to go hiking or sit and enjoy nature. With the increase in smartphones, the current young generation spends more and more time in front of digital devices and less time interacting with nature.
Nature provides us with a way to live in the present moment. When we hear birds chirping and feel the breeze on our skin, we get grounded, which helps us live in the present moment.
1. History of Island Lake Orangeville
Island Lake Orangeville, located near Ontario, Canada, has a rich history dating centuries back. Canada, as we all know, has a long history of indigenous people. So, indigenous people inhabited the area around the island of Lake Orangeville, and they were using the resources of this area.
European settlers, including the French and British, arrived in Canada well before the 19th century. The British Crown and the Mississaugas of the Credit negotiated several treaties between 1781 and 1820, which led to the transfer of Mississauga lands to the Crown, facilitating settlement by United Empire Loyalists and other colonists.
Due to its geographical position, the Island Lake-town area was a trading center. In 1863, the area was named Orangeville after the businessman Orange Lawrence founded the community. Orangeville is the nearest town to Island Lake Orangeville.
The Island Lake we know today is a reservoir created by the Credit Valley Conservation Authority (CVC). CVC is an environmental organization that works to manage and protect the natural resources of Credit River Watershed. CVC is one of the Conservation authorities in Ontario that works in partnership with various authorities and groups in Ontario.
This lake is situated at the northeast corner of the town and spreads across 300 hectares of lake, wetland, and forest, with four recreation seasons. The conservation area development started in 1967 with the creation of two dams.
This manmade reservoir has been created from the flooding of a giant cedar swamp and fleeting thicket. The island lake area has been evolving for the last 50 years with the construction of various facilities.
2. Recreational Activities at Island Lake Orangeville
Many recreation destinations feature well-marked trails that help you watch scenic views and delve into nature on your foot.
You can enjoy over 60 kilometres of beginner to advanced trails at Island Lake Orangeville. It includes the Bruce and Trans-Canada trail networks. You can cover various geographical features, including Oak Ridges Moraine and Niagara Escarpment. Some of the trails have limited activity usage.
You are expected to follow the basic Trail Etiquettes:
- Always follow the designated trails. To protect soil from erosion, do not go off trail and do not use shortcuts.
- Do not play loud noises from digital devices. Respect the nature sounds.
- Travel consistently and follow lanes so people behind you can better understand what to expect. Be careful with slippery trails.
- Cyclists must yield to pedestrians. Cyclists must be careful when they meet pedestrians on narrow bridges at the lake.
- Do not approach or follow the wild animals.
- Please do not feed the animals as it is unsuitable for their health and alters their natural behaviour.
2.1.1. Vicki Barron Lakeside Trail
This 8-kilometre-long trail has an average width of 2.4-meter circles around Island Lake and local trails in Orangeville and Mono. This trail has been named after the previous employee of CVC, Vicki Barron.
The trail surface consists of crushed stones and decking. This stroller-friendly trail has lake-spanning bridges and allows wildlife viewing. Vicki Barron Lakeside trail has an estimated Hiking time of 2 hours, and the rest areas are around 800 meters apart.
2.1.2. Island Lake Orangeville Family Trail
This Island Lake Family trail is 1 Kilometer long and has an estimated Hiking time of 15 minutes. This stroller-friendly trail has an average width of 2.3 meters. Maintaining a Restroom distance of fewer than 500 meters, this trail has a crushed stone surface and decking.
2.1.3. Hockley Trail
This town of Mono trail has a length of 1.2 Kilometers with an estimated hiking time of 20 minutes. The course lets you walk through the forest and connects the Vicki Barron trail to North Dam. It does not offer any restrooms. Crushed stone is used for making this trail.
2.2.1. Vicki Barron Lakeside Cycling Trail
Cycling is one of the most loved outdoor activities in the Island Lake Orangeville conservation area.
The multi-use trail around the Island Lake is open for cyclists. If you want to improve your cycling skills from novice to expert level and want a picture-perfect setting for your cycling experience, then you should visit Vicki Barron Lakeside Cycling Trail at the lake conservation area.
The trails travel through Oak Ridges Moraine and Niagara Escarpment. In the winter season, you should try Flat tire cycling at the lake conservation area. Bikes are available for rental but are subject to availability.
2.3. Fishing at Island Lake Orangeville Conservation Area
Fishing is another famous activity near the Island of Lake Orangeville conservation area. Island Lake is renowned for different kinds of Fish Species, including northern pike, yellow perch, sunfish, and many more.
Make sure you follow the local laws for fishing. The Island Lake provides opportunities for recreational fishing and catch-and-release fishing.
The fishing offers enjoyment for beginners as well as seasoned anglers. You can try Lake fishing, pond fishing, river fishing, and ice fishing at the lake conservation area.
2.4. Picnicking at Island Lake Orangeville
Picnicking by the lakeside is a great idea to make bonding with your friends and family while enjoying nature. Select a place with a shade that will keep your food and other luggage comfortable, and you can relax with your friends and family.
You can even host a corporate function at the Island Lake Orangeville conservation area. More than 20 individuals can plan and reserve a slot for your function.
Island Lake picnic sites vary in size, and they can accommodate a maximum of 500 guests, with six reservable picnic areas and individual tables scattered throughout the park.
These shelters and table arrangements at the lake conservation area make it an ideal location for family gatherings. It is an excellent place for family get-togethers, company outings, or birthday celebrations.
2.5. Dog Walking
Island Lake Orangeville Conservation Area is a great place to enjoy outdoor fun with your family, including your dog. Just make sure you follow the basic etiquette. Your dogs must always be at a six-foot distance on a leash.
Keeping the dog on a leash benefits their safety and shows consideration for other fellow visitors who are scared of wandering dogs. Check the park trail description pages properly, as some species can be at risk if the dogs are loose.
2.6. Boating, Kayaking, and Canoeing
Island Lake conservation area provides excellent fun for both new and experienced paddlers. To view the scenic beauty of nature with a unique view, you can either bring your equipment or rent from them.
Island Lake spreads around 400 acres, and you can weave through water lilies, watch a muskrat building its home, and see sea bass fish swirling just under the lake water’s surface.
You can also rent watercraft equipment from them. Rentals include life jackets for each person, paddles, batteries, an electronic motor, and an anchor with a safety rope. Canoes, Kayaks, and electric boats are the available rentals.
You can also use a stand-up paddleboard to propel through the lake while you explore the scenic beauty of the lake conservation area. One can take a break and practice some meditation on the paddleboard. People are free to bring their paddleboard or use the rental facility.
Bird watching, also known as birding, is a way of respecting nature. Maintaining silence with patience, you can observe and identify different bird species. Birding can be a delight and a learning opportunity for nature enthusiasts.
Island Lake Orangeville conservation area is the perfect place for birding activity. You just bring your spotting equipment and observe the redhead, ring-necked duck, and flocking green-winged teal in the spring and fall seasons.
In summer, you can listen to marsh birds like Virginia Rail and marsh wren along the Vicki Barron Lakeside Trail. The diversity of habitats at the park has a variety of birds throughout the year.
2.8. Photography and Filming
Photographers and nature lovers have a great opportunity to capture the park’s natural beauty. Novice and professional photographers will find various options to capture lake images and rolling landscapes at the lake park.
You are welcome for personal photography capture great memories, and share them on social media accounts. You can try different angles for photographs for exciting shots. To capture sharp images with the help of a tripod. Lake provides a good impact of reflection in your photos. Just make sure you stay on trails while you capture the photographs.
If the weather is clear, you can look for dramatic, interesting skies when capturing breathtaking photos. You can capture wildlife on the Island of Lake Orangeville, but make sure patience is the key when capturing the outdoors.
Professional photography of up to 8 people does not require any permit, but if more than 6-8 people are involved, it requires a special permit. Drone usage is also not allowed in the Island Lake conservation area.
Visiting Lake Orangeville can be a great experience if you want to connect with nature. It has options such as cycling, fishing, birding, Dog walking, picnicking, and much more. All these outdoor activities offer delightful experiences you will cherish for a long time.
Bird-watching enthusiasts will love this park as you can spot chickadees perched on trees, great blue herons in the Credit River, or red-winged blackbirds. Calmly observing these feathered creatures is a rewarding experience.
Island Lake, which is managed by CVC, makes a significant effort to maintain the conservation of this lake’s facilities. Island Lake Conservation Area hosts various events throughout the year for people of all ages. These events include many bird-watching workshops, educational programs to protect nature, nature walks, etc.
If you want outdoor fun or relaxation, visit Island Lake Orangeville and capture memories of a lifetime.