Designated as a wetland of international significance and spanning an area of more than 6,000 hectares (15,000 acres), the Minesing Wetland is home to a diverse array of habitats. The unique assemblage of fens, marshes, swamps and bogs supports a network of sensitive flora and fauna, some rare or endangered. Efforts continue to introduce visitors to this world-class wetland in a non-intrusive manner.
By kayak or canoe ... Willow Creek and the Nottawasaga River offer wonderful opportunities for short visits or longer trips, and a chance to spot some of the many waterfowl species that call this area home. A series of hiking trails are found in and around the wetlands, all of them offering unique glimpses into this wetland and its inhabitants.
On foot, snowshoe or cross-country ski ... explore the Ganaraska, Trans Canada and McKinnon trails. Note: the McKinnon trail is an unmaintained road allowance.
For bird watching ... the 12'-high Waterfowl Viewing Window offers a bird's eye view of the wetland and its inhabitants. With the Mad River winding northwest to converge with the Nottawasaga River, this area experiences flooding in the spring, attracting a myriad of waterfowl.
For hunting ... there is a portion of the Minesing Wetlands where hunting is permitted in season. Hunters must purchase a permit from the NVCA to hunt in the Minesing Wetlands Conservation Area, in addition to regular hunting requirements.
Hunting permits may be purchased at the Administration Office. NVCA hunting permits cover parking fees for the hunting season.
- Daily Parking - $6.50 per vehicle
- Annual Parking - $45.50 per vehicle (valid for all NVCA-operated conservation areas)
- For payment options and details, see parking fees.
Your parking fee helps offset the cost of
maintaining and improving NVCA conservation areas, and helps fund volunteer groups like the Friends of Minesing Wetlands.
Safety in the Minesing
- Minesing Wetlands is an isolated natural area. If you are planning to explore the conservation area be sure to read our Minesing Safety Tips before heading out.
Willow Creek Canoe Access:
GPS: X-593661, Y-4919396
DIRECTIONS: From the City of Barrie, go west on Hwy. 90 (Dunlop St.) to George Johnston Rd. Travel north 8 km to the parking lot and canoe access on your left
DIRECTIONS: From the City of Barrie, go west on Hwy. 90 (Dunlop St.) to
Waterfowl Viewing Window:
GPS: X-588193, Y-4911990
DIRECTIONS: Take Hwy. 90 west of the Nottawasaga River into Angus. Where Hwy 90 turns southwards, turn right onto County Road 10. Follow into the village of Brentwood and turn right onto Concession Road 2 Sunnidale. Follow until you see the tower on your left.
Minesing Wetlands Reports & Studies
60 years of forest change in the Minesing Wetlands (1953-2013): Causal factors, ecological implications and recommendations for reforestation, 2014 report (click here)
Hydrogeochemical characterization of the eastern Minesing Wetlands, Nov. 2014 (click here)
Minesing Wetlands Flora and Fauna Biological Inventory (click here - WARNING: 11 MG file) A hard copy may be purchased for $40 plus HST from the NVCA Administration Centre (contact details).
Land Acquisition in the Minesing Wetlands
The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) works with private landowners to secure ecologically significant lands that we have identified as priorities for conservation action. NCC acquires land through outright purchase or receives properties by land donation.
The NCC and the NVCA have been working together for more than 30 years to protect important places within the Minesing Wetlands. To learn more about NCC's current Minesing Wetlands land acquisition program please contact Kristyn Ferguson, NCC's Georgian Bay Huronia Program Manager at 519-826-0068 x.222.
Friends of Minesing Wetlands
The Friends of Minesing Wetlands are a volunteer group dedicated to protecting and promoting the Minesing Wetlands. Learn more about their work at