Rideau Canal – Park Trail

Posted on September 29, 2017 / 7799
Rideau Canal – Park Trail
Listing Types : Park Trail
Location : Eastern Ontario
Note : EPIC Ride
Total Trail Km : 10
Park Path % : 90
Road % : 10
Rate Skill Levels : Easy, Intermediate
Terrain : paved, crushed gravel, bridges, flat sections
Faclities : parking, food close by, toilet, outhouse, drinking water, trailhead map, good signage, trails maintained, bike rentals
Trail Fee : free

Length – 10 km (one way) about 19 km total

80% park path
20% road, detours

Elevation –  flat as it follows canal, drops to Ottawa River at locks

Terrain – asphalt wide path with line, some crushed stone, gravel sections

Skill – easy

Maps – map at trailhead, signs on trail

Facilities –  parking on side street, washrooms at Patterson Creek, at Lansdowne Park and also at Dows Lake Pavilion. bike rental – RentABike

Highlights – canal locks, bridges,  Hogs Back Falls, visit Parliament Hill, Agri Museum

Trail Fee – free

Phone – 613-580-2400

WebsiteOttawa Tourism   Rideau Info   City of Ottawa

Similar TrailsRideau River, Welland Canal, Cornwall Waterfront

Local Clubs –  Ottawa Bike Club,  Kanata Bike Club 

Access – Numerous points along the route, parking on side streets by the trail, likely easier to find a spot further away from downtown and at Dow Lake Park

A popular Park trail locals love to cruise, this route is on the Rideau Canal. As it winds from the Hog’s Back Locks up to the Ottawa River (about 10 km), the trail offers an ever-changing scenery of well-kept parklands and watercraft activity on the canal.

Well-maintained and flat, as trails along rivers tend to be, this is a carefree ride for the whole family. One has even a choice of making it a loop, as there are paths on both sides of the canal for most of the way.

At the south end be sure to visit the Hog’s Back Falls, as the rushing water is rather spectacular. (And now you know why there is a canal!) Cruising north along the canal behind Carleton University and on to Hartwell’s Locks, you then have a choice of continuing along on the east side or crossing the top of the narrow lock gates and heading up the other side.

If I were to recommend which side is better for bikers, it would be the west side as it is a little longer as it goes around Dow’s Lake and also more scenic, with fewer cars in sight. The east side is a bit more of a direct commuter path that winds along the road. (Although it is still enjoyable.)

On the west side, make time to stop at the wildlife gardens and the Agriculture and Food Museum. Onward, the path curves around Dow’s Lake and offers side trails to explore.

Both Park trails continue right into downtown Ottawa and Parliament Hill, where they join the Ottawa River bike trail going northwest.

Be sure to review your plans carefully, as…


Read more of this review in my trail guidebook, plus 64 others. Featuring better maps, more parking locations and elevation graphs. Available as an eBook or paperback.

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