Day trips to Island Lake

Island lake Conservation AreaIsland lake Conservation Area

With the summer heat and school being out, parents are looking for cool ways to entertain kids. We’re lucky to live in a watershed that offers conservation areas with unique views and activities for the whole family. Island Lake offers one-of-a-kind trails and fun activities that will keep visitors entertained for the whole day.

Bring a pair of binoculars because Island Lake is teaming with different bird species. Seeing an osprey in the wild is a spectacular sight. They’re birds of prey like eagles, hawks and falcons. They can dive for food from a height of up to 40 metres. In the early 1970s, osprey populations were at a critical low due to the effects of DDT. The species has slowly bounced back since banning the pesticide.

An osprey’s wingspan can be over six feet

Other bird species that can be found are great blue heron, black capped chickadee, downy woodpecker, blue jay, red-winged blackbird and yellow warbler. Each bird has its own distinct colouring and call. If you spot a species you aren’t sure of, report it to CVC park staff and they’ll help you identify it.

Protecting turtle populations at Island Lake has been a recent priority. We help female turtles protect their young from predators by building nest protectors. Female turtles search along the shoreline from May to July to find the right place to dig a nest and lay their eggs.

Snapping turtle
A female snapping turtle laying her eggs

The lake is home to largemouth bass, northern pike, black crappie, sunfish, rock bass, yellow perch and brown bullhead. If you’re interested in getting a closer look at these native fish species, Island Lake offers fishing, boating, canoeing, kayaking, paddle boarding and windsurfing. Don’t have your own equipment? No problem, visit the Island Lake activities page to learn how you can rent equipment for the day.

Paddel board

Island Lake has seen many exciting changes in the last few years. The Vicki Barron Lakeside Trail is an 8.3 km loop that circles Island Lake and links together a number of local trails. The trail is a huge accomplishment for us, our foundation and the Friends of Island Lake. Over the course of 10 years, the Friends of Island Lake worked tirelessly to raise over $2 million in cash and in-kind donations from generous contributors. They contributed over 12,000 volunteer hours to the project. With summer’s lush greenery and warm weather, now is a great time to explore this amazing accomplishment.

If you want to take relaxation to a new level, try yoga in the park. Classes are suitable for anyone 12 and older. CVC and local yoga masters offer park visitors a unique combination of nature and yoga. Research has shown that spending time in nature reduces stress levels. Combine fresh air with yoga to soothe your mind, body and soul.

Yoga in the park
A relaxing session of yoga in the park at Island Lake

Island Lake has so much to offer and because of this, many people want to visit and explore the park. With a higher volume of cars than usual, it is important that visitors park in designated parking areas. Please visit our trails parking page for more information. See you at the park!

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