***Please click on this link Map Locations of ALL Trails on this Site to view a map with the location of every trail “2oldguyswalking” has written a review on.***
Port Hope’s Monkey Mountain Trails Review
These trails are right inside the town of Port Hope. The steep hills and deep ravines make Monkey Mountain unfit for urban development, so it’s been left to become a surprisingly pleasant green space.
There are four entrances to this space, all fairly well hidden.
The West (Victoria St.) access :
On Victoria St. N. between addresses 177 and 179, there’s an unassuming little gap where one can access the trails. You’ll have to park on a nearby side street.
Click on this link to open Google maps at the location : https://goo.gl/maps/25yuvkbzkzTKqzyB9
This trail runs behind the High School for a bit, and then opens up into Margles Park. This park is well maintained with mown grass spaces and level, mown trails around “islands” of shrubbery. This is the more “civilized” part of the green space. From here to the East (until you hit Cavan St. and the Ganaraska river) all the trails go (literally), downhill.
The North (Jocelyn St.) access :
This access is on Jocelyn St. 750 meters East of the Victoria St. N. intersection where there’s enough space for a car or two on the South side.
Click on this link to open Google maps at the location : https://goo.gl/maps/Pe3TWSNfejbokCMQA
This one does away with the niceties and just drops you right down into the ravine. Mind you, I was quite impressed with the hilltop view of that ravine with no visible indication that you’re in the middle of a town.
The South (Jack Burger Sports Complex) access :
There’s more than ample parking in the Jack Burger Sports Complex lot on Highland Dr. where the trails can be accessed from the far North-West end of the parking lot.
Click on this link to open Google maps at the location : https://goo.gl/maps/G6etsz2FKRh7X8Lj8
This access will have you entering with the High School’s sports field to your left. Going up the hill, the trail to the left will go to Margles Park. To the right or directly ahead, will lead you into the forested trail down to the Ganaraska river or Jocelyn St.
The East (Cavan St.) access :
You can park on Cavan St. about 450 meters North of Cavan St. / Highland Dr. intersection. There’s all kinds of parking along the river, and the access is between the modern hydro transformer station and the old, abandoned hydro building just South of 268 Cavan St.
Click on this link to open Google maps at the location : https://goo.gl/maps/GXDHARe8hSd1QwRP8
This is my favourite access point for a number of reasons. You can walk the Ganaraska riverbank trail before or after the Monkey Mountain Trails, and it’s at the lowest point of the trail system, so you’ll always be walking back downhill on your return.
The Final Take
There are a few trail maps at some of the trail heads here but really, there are trails all over the place in there. However, the best ones are obvious on the ground as they’re well used by locals. My best guesstimate would be around 3.5 kms of trails. Since the trailheads aren’t readily apparent, I rarely think of walking this system but every time I do, I walk away impressed and surprised.
These trails are hilly to be sure, but they’re clean and offer a blend of both canopied upland woods and lowland cedar forests with open meadows, running streams, and wooded ravine viewing. I certainly wouldn’t suggest you drive any distance to walk these trails, but if you’re a recent local who doesn’t know about them, or are just in the area, they’re worth a look about.
Have a nice walk,