Rattlesnake Point Conservation Area

Rattlesnake Point Conservation Area is a natural eco-tourism attraction spanning 100 square km of breathtaking scenery, including thousand-year-old cedars and over ten km of dramatic limestone cliffs. Winding forest trails, established rock-climbing routes and seasonal camping sites make Rattlesnake Point a favourite destination for outdoor enthusiasts in southern Ontario. 

Rattlesnake Point Conservation Area is located just outside of the town of Milton, approximately 65 km west of Toronto. Access the main gates from Appleby Line, which connects to the Queen Elizabeth Way to the south or to Highway 401 through the town of Milton to the north. 

Get up-to-date information about Rattlesnake Point Conservation Area on Conservation Halton’s official website. Keep on reading to see what Destination Ontario recommends. 

A woman is rock-climbing up a steep rocky wall

More about Rattlesnake Point Conservation Area

Rattlesnake Point Conservation Area derived its name from the winding, snake-like paths cut by glaciers along the Niagara Escarpment, not actual rattlesnakes. The area is notorious for turkey vultures that are commonly seen soaring over the escarpment. Hike to the five lookout points perched atop the cliffs and get a dazzling view of the countryside. 

Rattlesnake Point features four main trails. The 1 km Rabbits Run Trail and the 1.5 km Rattlesnake Vista Adventure Trail are great for visitors looking to enjoy a quick hike through pristine forests. For an epic, sweeping vista of the Niagara Escarpment and rolling fields and farms below, hike 3 km along the Buffalo Crag Trail to Buffalo Crag Lookout Point. Hikers looking for a challenge will enjoy the 7.4 km Nassagaweya Canyon Trail to Crawford Lake, which takes roughly four hours to complete.  

Crawford Lake itself is a unique destination: it is a rare meromictic lake, meaning it has layers of water that don’t mix into each other. Explore a recreated Indigenous longhouse village and learn about the Iroquois people who lived there in the pre-European era. The Hide and Seek Trail is a fun walk along the lake with carvings of various local and at-risk wildlife species displayed. 

You’ll appreciate the natural history at Rattlesnake Point by walking among the ancient cedar trees, some over 800 years old, that line the limestone cliffs. These same cliffs are also a magnet for both local and visiting rock climbers. With three designated climbing sites, over 235 routes and multiple pre-installed anchors, experienced rock climbers can test their skills underneath a canopy of cool, lush woods. Fall asleep under the stars in one of Rattlesnake Point’s 17 available campsites. Group sites are available and each camping spot is equipped with a picnic table, fire pit, and nearby outhouse and washroom facilities. 

Extend your nature adventure by exploring Rattlesnake Point’s neighbouring natural attractions. It is bordered by Kelso Conservation Area, the Crawford Lake Conservation Area, Mount Nemo Conservation Area and Livingston Park located within the town of Milton. Tee up at one of the nearby golf clubs, shop for local organic goods at Milton’s country market, or check out the Halton County Radial Railway, a museum filled with working electric streetcars, buses and trolleybuses. 

Last updated: August 18, 2023

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