Stony Swamp

Stony Swamp, southwest of Ottawa, features a network of beaver ponds, wetlands and forests. This area offers over 40 kilometres of trails — more than in any other section of the Greenbelt. In addition, you will find wetland boardwalks and interpretive exhibits on geology and natural history.

Habitats, plants and wildlife

Stony Swamp is the most ecologically diverse protected area in the Ottawa Valley. The swamp’s bedrock dates back to Precambrian times, the earliest geological era. Stony Swamp is classified as a provincially significant wetland and an Area of Natural and Scientific Interest (ANSI).

The area has more than 700 species of plants, which is the highest number counted in any part of Canada’s Capital Region. Stony Swamp is home to 63 species of regionally rare plants, 11 of which exist nowhere else in the Greenbelt.

A variety of reptiles, amphibians, mammals and birds make their home in this area. Stony Swamp has 251 regionally rare bird species. This includes 17 species at risk, one of which is the northern goshawk. There are also many interesting habitats:

  • a sugar maple forest
  • small alvar clearings
  • boggy wetlands
  • regenerating pastures
  • a lichen population designated as a species at risk

Things to do at Stony Swamp

Stony Swamp has the most trails for hiking, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in the Greenbelt. You can also ride your bike at Stony Swamp, which contains part of the Greenbelt Pathway West, and connects to the Trans Canada Trail and the Rideau Trail. The Lime Kiln Trail passes a historic kiln, the Sarsaparilla Trail has a dock extending onto a beaver pond and the Jack Pine Trail crosses beaver ponds.

There is also a Wild Bird Care Centre and a toboggan hill, as well as off-leash dog walking at Bruce Pit.

Facilities

Washrooms

Stony Swamp has outhouses located at the following parking lots: P5, P7, P8, P9, P11, P12 and P13.

Parking

Free, year-round parking is available at the P4 to P13 parking lots.

Picnic Areas

There is a picnic area by the Jack Pine Trail, and a sheltered picnic area by the Sarsaparilla Trail.

Universal Accessibility

The Sarsaparilla Trail is universally accessible, as is the dock at beaver pond on this trail.