Hiking is a popular recreational pastimes, as a get-away from the hustle and bustle of urban living, while enjoying the beauty and wildlife of nature. Hiking season runs mid-May until October, thorough the snow-free season. Of course, with unpredictable weather, trails may be closed anytime during the season. The provincial or national park wardens will inform you of any closures or cautions.
Day hike, where you expect to return home before evening, doesn't require as much equipment as an overnight hike. You should wear a good pair of hiking boots (sturdy running shoes will do), and clothing that is appropriate for the weather conditions. Because weather conditions can change quickly in the outdoors, it is safer to overdress, in layers, than to be under-dressed. For a day hike bring water, food, sunscreen, a map, a compass, a rain coat, knife, matches, and of a hiking buddy.
For an overnight hike, you'll also need a tent, food bags, a change of underwear and socks, and standard camping supplies. Check with your hiking partner to prevent packing duplicate gear, to minimize gear weight.
Hiking can be done almost anywhere, but the best scenery and terrain is in the provincial and national parks. These parks provide marked and mapped trails to avoid getting lost. But there are plenty of places for short hikes in and around Barrie:
Trails in Parks
For the more ambitious, there are a number of longer (and more scenic and/or wild) trails in the Barrie - Orillia region,