Facebook Pixel

Official Tourism Website of Bruce County, Ontario, Canada

scroll_arrow

Winter in Wiarton and Sauble Beach

Share this story...
More than a Summer Dream
More than a Summer Dream

Sunny skies and long days at the beach. Who says that's just a summer dream? Did you know that both Sauble Beach and neighbouring Wiarton are great winter destinations? From cross-country skiing and snowshoeing to winter festivals packed with family fun, these two small towns pack some big-time winter adventure. Read on and start planning your winter getaway today.

Cross-country Skiing

Between the Bruce Ski Club and the Sauble Cross Country Ski Club, visitors to Sauble, Wiarton and Hepworth have plenty of options for great nordic skiing. 

 

The Bruce Ski Club operates two cross-country ski locations: One in Colpoy's Bay just outside Wiarton and the other in Hepworth at the Sawmill Nordic Centre.

 

The Sawmill Nordic Centre offers 11 kilometres of cross-country trail, groomed for both classic and skate skiing. Offering everything from gentle beginner loops to challenging hills for expert skiers, you'll want to check out the downloadable trail map here before planning your route for the day. One exciting offering is an illuminated loop that extends your ski day to include early mornings and evenings. The button for the lights is just outside the hut and skiers are reminded to turn them off when they leave. Home to a thriving Jack Rabbits race program, you'll see many young skiers perfecting their craft on the trails. Both day passes and seasonal memberships are available for the Bruce Ski Club. Nearby Suntrail Source for Adventure offers sales and rentals of cross country ski, snowshoe and other outdoor gear and is also a pickup location for day passes and membership stickers (purchased online in advance).

 

Closer to Wiarton on Bruce Road 9, you will find the Bruce Ski Club's second location, Colpoy's Trails. With 11.5 kilometres of classic cross-country ski trails, you'll pass through rolling hills, sheltered woods and open fields while being rewarded with stunning views of Colpoy's Bay. While trails are groomed and track set for classic skiing, weather conditions change quickly and it's best to visit the club's Facebook page for up to date trail conditions. A printable map of the trail network can be downloaded here. Just like the Sawmill location, both day passes and seasonal memberships are available for the Bruce Ski Club.

 

The Sauble Beach Cross Country Ski Club offers another great nordic destination, just a short drive from the beach itself and just north of Sauble Falls Provincial Park (click for location map). With 18 kilometres of groomed trails running through forested areas and alongside the Rankin River, you can easily spend a perfect winter's day here. Be sure to review their trail map online (although trailside signage is available too) and make sure you choose loops that best match your ability. Day passes and memberships are available and club volunteers are on site most weekends to collect fees.

Snowshoeing

If the misery sticks are not for you, then perhaps snowshoeing is more your style. Whether you want to explore off-piste with this snow floating footwear or pump up your cardio on a groomed trail, there are some great options for both in the Sauble and Wiarton area. Both the Sauble Cross Country Ski Trails and the Sawmill Nordic Centre (detailed above) also offer separate snowshoe trail systems. One thing to note: Cross-country skiers do not appreciate snowshoers using groomed cross-country trails as they destroy the uniform tracks that groomers work so hard to create. Sauble Cross Country offers 14 kilometres of snowshoe trail with varying difficulties and directions marked on the map.  The Bruce Ski Club's Sawmill Nordic Centre has 5 kilometres of dedicated snowshoe trail. Be sure to check the map and stick to the snowshoe trails only.

Of course, you can snowshoe on other local trails to your hearts content with a few key safety tips in mind. Do not snowshoe on the Niagara Escarpment where crevices and cracks can be concealed by fresh snowfall. If snowshoeing along the beach in Sauble Beach, stay well back from the water's edge. Ice shelves can form from winter wave action and should be avoided for safety reasons.

Wiarton Willie and Winterfest

Unless you've been living in a hole (like one prognosticating groundhog we know), you've probably heard of Wiarton Willie. This legendary albino rodent makes his home in Bluewater Park in Wiarton, resting up in his den for his annual public appearance at the Wiarton Willie Festival every February 2nd. If you're lucky enough to be in Wiarton at dawn that day, you can help wake up Willie with the annual pre-dawn fireworks show and stick around for the many celebrations that surround Prediction Morning. Get all the details on the festival right here and read up on the history of this unusual celebration right here. Not in Wiarton for festival weekend? Be sure to stop and grab a photo with the Wiarton Willie cut-out at Bluewater Park.

A winter visit to Sauble may mean fewer seagulls, but not if you happen to visit during the town's annual Winterfest celebration. Scheduled for mid-January, you'll see Sunny the Sauble Seagull in the Friday night parade before heading to the Sauble Beach Community Centre for the annual Christmas tree bonfire and children's dance. The weekend fun continues with a pancake breakfast, road hockey, silent auction, baby contest and more. Be sure to check out the event details on the Sauble Beach website.  

Aprés Snow Treats

Unless you've been living in a hole (like one prognosticating groundhog we know), you've probably heard of Wiarton Willie. This legendary albino rodent makes his home in Bluewater Park in Wiarton, resting up in his den for his annual public appearance at the Wiarton Willie Festival every February 2nd. If you're lucky enough to be in Wiarton at dawn that day, you can help wake up Willie with the annual pre-dawn fireworks show and stick around for the many celebrations that surround Prediction Morning. Get all the details on the festival right here and read up on the history of this unusual celebration right here. Not in Wiarton for festival weekend? Be sure to stop and grab a photo with the Wiarton Willie cut-out at Bluewater Park.

 

A winter visit to Sauble may mean fewer seagulls, but not if you happen to visit during the town's annual Winterfest celebration. Scheduled for mid-January, you'll see Sunny the Sauble Seagull in the Friday night parade before heading to the Sauble Beach Community Centre for the annual Christmas tree bonfire and children's dance. The weekend fun continues with a pancake breakfast, road hockey, silent auction, baby contest and more. Be sure to check out the event details on the Sauble Beach website.  

Brought to you in partnership with
Brought to you in partnership with

Learn all about visiting Bruce, Grey, and Simcoe counties here