Trail through O'Neill Nature Preserve


Trail Etiquette

Here are some suggestions to ensure that everyone can enjoy our recreational trails:

  • Stay on the trail to avoid disturbing vegetation and private property;
  • Pedestrians have the right of way on recreational trails. Cyclists, roller-bladers and runners moving at high speed should pass on the left when possible. Try to give advance warning before passing – a bell or verbal warning can be helpful;
  • Please do not litter. If possible, leave the trail cleaner than when you arrived;
  • Respect the privacy of those living along urban recreational trails;
  • No motorized vehicles are permitted on municipal recreational trails.
  • Trails are not maintained in the winter months- use at your own risk. 


Q. Is there a fee to use recreational trails and pathways?
A. All municipal trails are free to enjoy! However, it might be necessary to pay an entrance fee to access trails in Conservation Areas or Provincial Parks – be sure to check before you begin your trip.

Q. Are the trails marked?
A. Providing clear, consistent signage for recreational trails and pathways throughout the municipality is an ongoing project. Many trails are marked with trailhead signs, and several also have interpretative signs along the way. If you are planning to walk an unfamiliar recreational trail or pathway, it might be helpful to bring along one of our trail map booklets, available online
here or from your local library.

Group walk, Mud Creek Recreational Trail Q. Are dogs permitted on recreational trails and pathways?
A. Yes, dogs are welcome on the trails, but they must be leashed and not interfere with the enjoyment of other trail users. Please be sure to pick up after your dog.

Q. Are bikes allowed on recreational trails and pathways?
A. A number of recreational trails in Chatham-Kent are suitable for cycling. The trail map booklet indicates the surface material of each trail – most asphalt and many granular surface trails can be used by cyclists. Remember to yield right-away to pedestrians, and stay on the trail or pathway to avoid damaging nearby vegetation or private property.

Q. Are municipal recreational trails accessible for strollers, wheelchair users, and others who require mobility devices?
A. The trail map booklet indicates the surface material, width, and slope of each recreational trail – most asphalt trails are suitable for strollers and wheelchairs, although it will depend on the individual user. If you have any questions or concerns about accessibility, please contact Parks, Cemeteries & Horticulture at 519.360.1998 or

Q. Is there parking available for recreational trails and pathways?
A. While many municipal recreational trails and pathways do have parking facilities nearby, parking is not provided at all trails. Be sure to check the trail map booklet to confirm the availability of parking before starting your trip!

Q. Are there washrooms available at recreational trails and pathways?
A. Few municipal recreational trails have washroom facilities provided. As most of our trails are under 2 km in length and are located in urban areas, washrooms are rarely required. The trail map booklet clearly indicates if washrooms are available – get it here or at your local library.

Q. Are recreational trails and pathways maintained during the winter?
A. The Municipality does not maintain recreational trails and pathways during the winter months. Those who wish to use the trails during this period can do so at their own risk. Many trails might be suitable for winter activities such as snowshoeing and cross-country skiing – use your imagination!

TREES Trail, Ridgetown Q. Do we need permission to hold a special event (wedding, fundraiser, guided walk) on a recreational trail or pathway?
A. Yes, all events on municipal property must have prior approval. For more on the Municipality of Chatham-Kent’s Special Event policies, please review the Special Event Policy located under Events on Municipal Property.

Q. I would like to report a problem or concern about an existing recreational trail or pathway. Who should I contact?
A. To report a problem with a municipal trail or pathway, please contact Parks and Open Spaces at 519.360.1998 or