Mono Cliffs contains a significant section of the Niagara Escarpment, including crevice caves, an upland limestone plain, and talus slopes. The park features two prominent masses of rock, separated by erosion from the main rock body. When this occurs, the resultant feature is called an outlier. Here you will encounter two large 'outliers' separated from the main escarpment edge.
Botanists have also noted that the local vegetation includes a particularly rich diversity of ferns. Many of the natural features in the park are fragile.
This park is part of the Niagara Escarpment Parks System, and the Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Reserve. The park offers excellent trail system for hiking.
The park has a number of cliff faces along the Niagara Escarpment itself. Along the Cliff Top Trail is a sturdy set of stairs which descend about 30m down the rock face to a wooden path that runs between the cliff face and a small outlier, providing excellent views of the rock, ferns, and cedars. Also along the Cliff Top Trail is a viewing platform that extends out over the cliff edge, with a great view to the north east across the park to the farms and valleys beyond. In the north west corner of the park you can find McCarston's Lake.
What to Wear:
With fall weather upon us, we suggest a layered approach to your clothing, as it may be cooler in the morning, and warming up as the day goes on. Wear comfortable and supportive footwear, i.e. hiking shoes/boots are highly recommended as we plan to venture onto the many trails of Mono Cliffs.
What to Bring:
Water, snacks/lunch, camera, lenses (wide angle and telephoto/zoom lenses), memory cards, lens filters (recommend a polarizer, neutral density, gradual neutral density, etc. for shooting landscapes), and a monopod or tripod is recommended. Sturdy camera bag / backpack for carrying your gear.
Bear in mind this is a hike, covering three-(3) or more kilometers, so it pays to plan your gear choices accordingly.
What to Expect:
Since this Outing is geared more to a casual walk in the woods, it is not considered difficult.
The trails in Mono Cliffs are well maintained, and they are not difficult, however, various stretches of the Bruce Trail cover undulating terrain. While not considered steep, some elevation gains should be expected. The trails in general offers some good vantage points, both escarpment and lakeside vista being available for photographing landscapes.
How to Get There (from Oakville / Toronto area):
Location: Fourteen-(14) km northeast of Orangeville, four-(4) km east of Mono Centre.
Take QEW to 403/410, merge onto 410 North until it becomes Highway 10. Continue North on Highway 10 and continue North of Orangeville.
Turn right on Mono Centre Road (Dufferin County Rd.#8) and follow it east for eight-(8) kilometers until you get to Mono Centre. Continue North on 2 Line East until the road ends. Park on the side of the road outside the park entrance.
Plan for a total travel time from Oakville of just over one hour.