I've heard it described as a northern lake in southern Ontario and paddling the beautiful lake at Rockwood Conservation area, it is easy to imagine that you've traveled somewhere far as the topography is unlike anything else in the area.
This small lake created by damming the Eramosa River is in a word, stunning and is so fun to explore. Surrounded by high glacial bluffs, the view while kayaking is ever-changing but always picturesque. As I typically visit there in the early morning, it is usually dead quiet interrupted only by the sound of small fish leaping and splashing back into the dark reflective water.
The lake is small, in my opinion its only negative feature and its perimeter can be paddled in an hour or so but don't worry, there is plenty more to do there. Hiking trails follow the shoreline of both the north and south edges of the lake and there are about a dozen caves to visit as well as potholes, round and at times deep impressions that have been caused by years of glacial water and debris drilling through the craggy rock.
This site also features some of the oldest recorded trees in Ontario and the sight of windswept cedar and cyprus trees clinging precariously from sheer rock faces can be found throughout the park.
The towering limestone cliffs along the trail provide dramatic view points of the lake and surrounding area and there is a waterfall to visit on the lake's eastern edge where the Eramosa River enters the lake.
The ruins of the Rockwood Woolen Mill built in 1867 still stand and have been preserved for future generations to enjoy and the lake features a small beach, a great spot to wrap up your visit. More information can be found on their website.
Canoe rentals are available and there is a small snack bar located near the beach.
Whether visiting for a few hours or staying and camping on one of their campsites for the weekend, I highly recommend checking this park out. It has very quickly become a favourite for me and I plan on returning on a pretty regular basis.