Avon Tail Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Is the trail accessible for wheelchair?
A. Most of the trail is not accessible. It is primarily an unpaved foot path, about a meter wide with uneven surface, rocks, roots, ground hog holes, stiles and edges of cultivated crop land. Parts in St. Marys and parts of the Stratford Side Trail are paved.

Q. Is this a public trail?
A. Most of the trail crosses private land with the permission of generous landowners. Please respect the privacy of landowners and walk only on the marked trail.

Q. Do I have to be a member to walk on the trail?
A. No, you may walk alone, with your family, or join an organized hike with one of our hike leaders. If you enjoy the trail, we hope you will purchase a membership or make a donation as the upkeep of the trail involves expenses.

Q. Where can I find a trail head access point?
A. A few access points are listed under ‘Hikes & Events’/Sample the Avon Trail’, with road directions and GPS coordinates. Access points are often marked at the roadside with a small, diamond ‘Avon Trail’ sign. Once on the trail, continue along by following the white blazes. For a complete list of all the access points with detailed trail description and points of interest along the way, please purchase an Avon Trail Guide.

Q. What are GPS coordinates?
A. GPS coordinates are longitude and latitude references (ex. 43.296425,-80.973462) found in the list of ‘Sample The Avon Trail’ under the ‘Hike & Events’ tab. Type these numbers, exactly as punctuated, into your Google Maps direction field. Google Maps will zoom to the location of the trail access point.

Q. Where can I purchase an Avon Trail Guide?
A. St. Mary’s Tourist Office, Stratford Tourist Office, Fanfare Books. For London and Waterloo locations, please see the website under ‘Shop’.

Q. Can I take my dog on the trail?
A. Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times. Dogs can startle and upset farm animals. Do not bring your dog on an organized group hike unless the hike leader states dogs are welcome.

Q. Can I ride a bicycle on the trail?
A. Except for the Lake Trail in Wildwood where bicycles are permitted, our agreement with landowners is that the Avon Trail is a foot path. Bicycles or motorized vehicles are not allowed.

Q. Can I forage along the trail?
A. No. The Trail User’s Code states the hiker refrains from picking mushrooms, wild leeks and other edibles from along the trail. Please respect that you are on private property; these edibles do not belong to you.

Q. Are there poisonous plants?
A. Yes. Though not prevalent, poison ivy, giant hogweed, and stinging nettles are found in some locales. Stay on the trail, and keep feet and legs covered.

Q. Are there ticks along the trail?
A. Ticks have been reported in SW Ontario. We have not had reports of ticks along the Avon Trail, but that could change anytime. Keep legs and feet covered. Check for ticks after walking the trail, particularly if walking through long grass.

Q. Can I camp along the trail?
A. There are camping facilities in Wildwood CA. Beyond that, camping is not permitted along the trail.

Q. Is there accommodation available along the trail?
A. The Forest Motel, on the east side of Stratford, is located on the trail. There are some B&Bs, motels and other options along the length of the trail. We do not keep a list.

Q. Can I get a badge for hiking the Avon Trail from one end to the other?
A. Yes, please see the ‘Shop’ for a picture and the requirements for earning an End-to-end badge.

Q. What opportunities are there to volunteer with the trail?
A. There are very satisfying opportunities to volunteer depending on a person’s interests, experience and abilities. Learn more…