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Recreational use of the Dufferin County Forest is governed by the recreational use policy and Dufferin County By-Law 2017-39. The purpose of the policy and the by-law is to protect the environmental integrity of the Dufferin County Forest and to manage public use of the Forest through the regulation of certain activities.
County Forest Do's
- Non-motorized recreation such as hiking, mountain biking, cross country skiing, and horseback riding.
- Obey all signs, including those designating trail uses.
- Snowmobiling in the Dufferin County Forest is permitted only on designated and signed trails that are part of the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) network. All of the rules that apply to OFSC trails anywhere in Ontario apply to the trails in the Dufferin County Forest. Check trail status here.
- What you carry in, please carry out.
- Remember your emergency number! Each entrance to the County Forest is posted with a six digit "address" on a green sign. Remember this number for emergencies.
- In case of emergency, call 9-1-1.
- If you wish to hold a recreational event, please contact the County Forest Manager to find out if your date is available prior to completing a County Forest Event Permit Application.
- Enjoy your visit to the Dufferin County Forest!
County Forest Don'ts
- No motorized vehicles except snowmobiles on designated Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs trails.
- No campfires.
- No camping.
- No littering or dumping.
- No hunting allowed in any Dufferin County Forest tract between June 1 and September 30. A forest use permit is required for hunting at all other times. For more information, click here.
- Unless you have a valid ticket from the Mansfield Outdoor Centre, do not use groomed/track-set cross-country ski trails leased to the Centre from December 1 to March 31.
Poison ivy grows commonly in many areas of the County Forest. Information about identifying poison ivy and its treatment can be found on the Health Canada website by clicking here.
West Nile Virus
Users of the Dufferin County Forest should be aware of the possibility of being bitten by mosquitoes while using the forest properties, particularly from dusk until dawn. Simple precautions such as wearing long sleeves, pants, and socks and using insect repellent will reduce the risk of being bitten and the possibility of contracting the mosquito-borne West Nile virus. For more information about West Nile virus, visit the Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health website.
Ticks and Lyme Disease
While the risk of contracting Lyme disease from ticks in the Dufferin County area is low, it is nevertheless advisable to use simple precautions such as wearing shirts with tight cuffs and placing pant legs inside socks when in the forest to minimize possible exposure to the ticks that may be carrying Lyme disease. You can find more information about ticks and Lyme disease visit the Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health website.
Motorized Vehicles - Frequently Asked Questions
Can I ride my ATV or dirt bike in the Dufferin County Forest?
No. Motorized vehicles, other than snowmobiles on designated Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) trails, are not permitted in the Dufferin County Forest. See the Recreational Use Policy and County Forest By-Law 2017-39. There is an exception for electrically powered vehicles in the case of people who have mobility difficulties and/or who are retrieving game.
Can I ride my snowmobile in the Dufferin County Forest?
Snowmobiles are permitted on designated Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) trails in the Dufferin County Forest. See the OFSC trail map here.
Can I hunt in the Dufferin County Forest?
Please visit the Hunting information page here.