|◘ Scout Valley||◘ Geo. Langman Wildlife Sanctuary||◘ Grant's Woods|
When you arrive at Grants Woods (see bottom of page for a map) you'll find a gravel parking lot behind the main "house" - this property once was a private home, and now is used by the Couchiching Conservancy. I don't believe there has been anyone in the office area at any time when we've been at the property, though.
To the west of the main parking area (located at the edge) is a large gazebo with benches where you can rest. If you happen to bring a bagged lunch, please do not leave a mess and take your wrappings with you when you leave. Because this area is mostly natural, leftovers will bring the forest animals out. And nobody likes litter, particularly not in an area such as this. The gazebo is also situated close to the edge of the woods and a trail entrance, and along the edge of the small grassy lawn are bird feeders. If you bring along your camera and sit quietly in the gazebo you'll be able to photograph a number of bird species at these feeders.
Also note - walking in the woods requires proper protection: long pants are better than shorts; long sleeves better than tank tops. Wear proper footgear (sandals are NOT a good idea), use bug repellent, and a walking stick (not a necessity, but very useful). A small backpack carrying a mini-first aid kit (bandages, saline, wipes); a bottle of water and a cell phone are a good idea, even in areas relatively close (like this one) to populated areas. I will mention the last time we headed into the woods there were notices posted at the edge of the trails (that would be late last summer - 2010) to be vigilant while in the forest due to the possibility of bears.
While we thankfully didn't see a bear, we did see a rusted old hulk (an old Ford Fargo truck) as we were fairly close to exiting the woods.
If you are looking for an interesting place to hike, close to Orillia, then you might want to try this one (oh - and there's no admission fee, but donations are welcome). Check the balance of the page for the some of the sights you may com across while visiting Grants Woods.
Any of you interested in hiking trails in and around Orillia (or in fact all of Ontario) may find the Ontario Trails Website of help.
Map for Grants Woods
View Grants Woods, Orillia in a larger map