Elora Cataract – Rail Trail

Elora to Cataract
Posted on February 10, 2019 / 8646
Elora Cataract – Rail Trail
Listing Types : Rail Trail
Location : Western Ontario
Note : Family Friendly
Total Trail Km : 47
Double track % : 95
Road % : 5
Rate Skill Levels : Easy
Terrain : smooth soil, paved, crushed gravel, bridges, gentle hills, open field
Faclities : parking, food close by, toilet, outhouse, drinking water, lodging, trailhead map, good signage, trails maintained
Trail Fee : Free

Length – 47 km (one way)

95% rail trail path
roads crossings, detours

Elevation – As with most Rail Trails, there is a gradual slope.

Terrain – Consists of crushed stone, as well as some gravel and grass; detours to an asphalt road.

Skill – Easy

Traffic – Bicyclists, hikers, and horses, as well as cross-country skiers and snowmobiles (mostly mid-trail) in the winter.

Maps – There are signs at the gates, as well as milestone markers.

Facilities – Parking is on the street, with amenities and lodging in Elora, Fergus, Belwood, and Erin.

Highlights – There is a large dam at Belwood Lake, the historic towns of Elora and Fergus, the Elora Gorge, the Forks of the Credit River, and the Elora Quarry.

Trail Fee – Free

Phone – None

Website – Elora Cataract TrailwayGrand River C. A.

Similar Trails – Kissing BridgeCaledonUxbridge

Local Clubs – GORBAWaterloo Cycling Club

Access – Most side roads have ample parking space; try: Gerrie Rd. and Beatty Line in Fergus, Gartshore St. in Belwood, and towns of Orton and Erin.

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The Elora Cataract Rail Trail is close to Toronto and offers a mellow bicycle ride on a well-maintained crushed-stone path. North of Guelph, it runs east from the historic town of Elora to the tiny village of Cataract.

At 47 km in length, my favourite section is the west end of the route, which is more scenic and has more amenities.

From Elora the Rail Trail starts its way out of town but truly gets going at the parking lot, where it crosses Gerrie St. Both Elora and the next town, Fergus, have built streets over what was once the rail line, so the route is not consistent.

After a short, 3 km ride you enter Fergus. Here, you need to take side streets for 2 km through the town, then again meet up with the old rail line near Gzowski St. and Forfar St. E.

Onward, this stretch of trail curves around and crosses over the Grand River at the Belwood Lake dam.

The lake and river below is a majestic sight to see while riding over this large dam, where trains would have once crossed.

One can follow the path up the river and past cottages to eventually head inland through rural Ontario farmland and into the town of Erin.

Ride another 7 km, and you reach the end at Cataract, finishing next to the Forks of the Credit River Provincial Park. This park makes for a great fall hike. It has some parking, but problematically, the village at the trailhead has none.

While out, make an effort to visit…


…more of this review and rail history can be read in the new trail guide.

Open Streetmap

Elora Rail Trail map

Elora Rail Trail map

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Fun Factor: Scenic: Trail Design: Technical: Workout:
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