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Important: If you're planning on climbing at Bon Echo, please make sure you know and observe the rules. The park authorities take these rules very seriously. In particular, please note the following:
- Don't sling the trees!
- Some routes are closed because of pictographs at their base. Please respect route closures.
- No new route activity.
- No rappelling except at a few designated sites or in an emergency.
- The wearing of helmets when climbing at Bon Echo is now MANDATORY!!!!
Climbing is banned in most Ontario provincial parks and it's only because of the cooperation and understanding of the authorities at Bon Echo that an exception has been made for us. Please respect this spirit of cooperation.
The club hut on Mazinaw Lake is one of greatest attractions of the Toronto section. Where else in Ontario can you experience multi-pitch climbing on a 100 metre high granite cliff rising vertically out of the water? The routes are all trad, ranging from 5.0 to 5.11, with the most popular routes in the 5.4 to 5.9 range. Don't let the low grades fool you though, many experienced leaders have been heard crying, "There's no way this is a 5.6!" The exposure and length of routes at Bon Echo make for an adventure unlike any other in Ontario. The Toronto section owns a climbing hut on the lake and operates a boat to ferry climbers to and from the climbs. The cabin is comfortable and an excellent place to meet other climbers and get information on the climbs. The hut also offers excellent swimming, hiking, and a wood fired sauna. For more information on Bon Echo, please contact the hut co-ordinator, Ron Rusk at (416)-580-8114. If you are interested in going up for weekend, please call the hut custodian for the particular weekend you are planning by Thursday night to arrange a pick-up at the public dock.
Where is Bon Echo and How Do I Get There?
Set a course for a town with the Tolkien-esque name of Kaladar: from Toronto, take the 401 east to Belleville, then follow Highway 37 north until it meets Highway 7, then proceed east to Kaladar. From Ottawa, follow Highway 7 west. From Kaladar, head north on Highway 41to Bon Echo Provincial Park. Two or three kilometres past the park entrance the highway heads downhill to the lake. At the base of the hill, make a sharp right on to Mazinaw Heights Road North and follow it back south for about 2 km, or until you spot the "Alpine Club" boat and a crowd of people in fleece jackets. Allow at least 3-4 hours from Toronto.
- Hut Fees (NOTE: THESE NEW RATES APPLY AS OF 2009)
- Members: $12.50 per day or night Non-Member: $25 per day or night
- Boat Pick-up
- Normally 10:30pm Friday and 10:30am Saturday. Other times can be arranged by calling the custodian for the specific weekend Meet at the public dock on Mazinaw Heights Road North
- Call By Thursday
- Call the hut custodian by Thursday night to let her or him know you're coming.You can find the custodian for the weekend on the events calendar. (link at top right of home page)
- Lost and Found
- If you've left anything at Bon Echo, please call Ron Rusk at (416)-580-8114
- What to expect
- The ACC property is camping only
- There are cooking stoves, and all cooking and eating utensils inside the hut
- Please assist the custodian by removing your personal garbage at the end of a weekend
- Last boat trip to the public dock is at 5PM (unless custodian advises otherwise). Please respect the custodian's right to go home at a reasonable hour
- Notice to Custodians
- Smart's Marina has a security fence. The main gate is locked at 8:00 pm and the small side gate is left unlocked until 11:00. Please time your arrival to be there before lockup.
Important Information from the Access Committee
- The park records instances of abandoned gear. An increased effort must be made to recover gear within 24 hrs. This issue means that climbers should have confidence in their ability to do the route.
- The 2003 Bon Echo MoU is re-signed every spring to allow continued climbing for another season
- The following are the only sites where rappellling may be done for any reason other than emergencies: Thunder Crack, The Slab, Easy Way Down, Formication, Saucer Lucy, Spiderman (62 m free drop), The Joke (81 m free drop). Only fixed anchors may be used - no trees.
- The following routes are closed due to the proximity of pictographs at the base of the route: Mediterranean Sundance, The Last shall be First (original start), Nilevan, Brass Monkey, Monkeyshines, Spiderman, Flat Paint, Black Groove. Closure is subject to review if the start of the route can be re-worked to totally avoid the pictograph(s), as has been done with The Last Shall Be First.
- All climbers must sign the general waiver and registration form when climbing at Bon Echo. This can be done at the park gate or via the Alpine Club's hut custodian. Moreover, each route climbed must be recorded with the custodian/park gate log indicating the route, date, leader and number in Party.
- All accidents requiring a rescue effort or resulting in an injury must be reported to the Park as soon as is reasonable possible after the incident. It should be acknowledged that Bon Echo Park has no special resources or skills to perform a rescue but will contact local authorities (OPP, CFB Trenton) as required.