The Oak Ridges Corridor Conservation Reserve (ORCCR) is a sanctuary for nature and an essential ecological linkage on the Oak Ridges Moraine. Visitors can learn about ecosystem features and functions, and enjoy activities that are compatible with the natural and cultural values of the park.
The ORCCR combines two formerly separate properties: Oak Ridges Corridor Park (ORCP) and Oak Ridges Corridor Park East (ORCPE). The two were integrated following the completion of the ORCPE Management Plan in 2011. The property, more than 175 hectares in size, is dominated by forests and wetlands, and consists of many unique and sensitive natural areas.
Trail Planning Projects
Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) is leading two concurrent trail planning projects for the ORCCR:
- MacLeod Estate Trail Linkage
- Cycling on Secondary Trails
These two projects are being undertaken under one overarching planning process.
The Oak Ridges Corridor Conservation Reserve was created to protect the high quality habitats, sensitive plants and wildlife found there. The ORCCR is dominated by mature forests, wetlands, meadows and pristine kettle lakes. Within the site are over 470 types of plants and 81 wildlife species, creating a rich and diverse ecosystem. The ORCCR authorized trail system (see map) has been designed to allow people to enjoy the natural beauty of the area while protecting the integrity of the surrounding ecosystem. Avoiding disturbance to sensitive species while encouraging people to enjoy and appreciate nature is a delicate balance that must be maintained for people to enjoy the trails sustainably for years to come. Careful trail planning, responsible trail user etiquette, and educating others to love and protect the environment is all part of maintaining this balance. Below are just a few of the sensitive species that call the ORCCR home – see if you can spot them next time you are out on the trails, and please take note of how you can avoid disturbing them.
About the Oak Ridges Moraine
The Oak Ridges Moraine is one of Southern Ontario’s most distinct landform features. It stretches as a ridge of hilly terrain for 160 kilometres — from the Niagara Escarpment in the west to the headwaters of the Trent River in the east. The moraine was created as glaciers receded, depositing layers of sand and gravel separated by clay and till soils. Rainwater collects and is stored in the moraine’s vast underground layers of sand and gravel (known as aquifers), eventually resurfacing as healthy, clean water that feeds the majority of river systems in the Greater Toronto Area.