Jackson Creek Trail

Jackson Creek Trail planned closures due to construction – read more…

The Jackson Creek Trail is a 4.5 kilometre multi-use trail offering a variety of recreational opportunities within the City of Peterborough and Township of Selwyn. Permitted activities include hiking and cycling in the summer months, and cross-country skiing in the winter, with nature viewing enjoyed year round. The Jackson Creek Trail is a section of The Great Trail (Trans Canada Trail), which links to the Kawartha Trans Canada Trail in the west and Peterborough Trans Canada Trail in the South-east.


Access through Jackson Park 610 Parkhill Rd W, Peterborough, ON K9J 6N6
Latitude 44.314566, Longitude -78.344632


For more info about this conservation area please contact Otonabee Conservation:
Phone: 705-745-5791
Email: otonabeeca@otonabeeconservation.com


May to October | 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
November to April | 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
No access permitted outside posted times; this conservation area is open Year Round.


Day Use | FREE



As you hike along the Jackson Creek Trail heading west from Jackson Park you will pass through a variety of landscapes and habitats. Some of these include upland forest, agricultural land, forested lowlands, valley land, and wetland areas. Each of the areas contains its own unique and interesting assortment plants and wildlife.

The main feature along the entire length of the trail, disappearing occasionally into the forest, is Jackson Creek. The creek is largely responsible for the abundance of diverse plant and animal life, providing for optimum viewing opportunities along the entire length of the Jackson Creek Trail.


Whether enjoying a family ride, commuting across town or passing through the area when travelling The Great Trail on a longer adventure. The Jackson Creek Trail offers 4.5km of flat wide trail bed suitable to all levels of cyclists.


During the winter months the Jackson Creek Trail offers 4km of machine groomed trail (Jackson Park to Ackison Road) for both classic and skate style cross-country skiing. The machine grooming is provided by the Peterborough Nordic Club (PNC) a group of local volunteers. This has been made possible through an agreement that was established between Otonabee Conservation and the PNC.

For more information about the PNC please visit their website at www.peterboroughnordic.com. Download a copy of the trail map to guide you during your visit.


The Jackson Creek Trail is a 4.2 kilometer multi-use recreational trail that extends from Jackson Park in the City of Peterborough to just west of Ackison Road in Selwyn Township.

In 1992, Otonabee Conservation  purchased the abandoned Canadian National Railway Company rail line that now provides the route for the Jackson Creek Trail. The rail bed provided an excellent base for the trail that was further enhanced by a layer of limestone screenings, creating a solid, wide, elevated surface affording accessibility and an excellent view of the surrounding landscape. Included in the acquisition were four railroad bridges that cross Jackson Creek at various locations.


The original creation of the Jackson Creek  Trail is the result of five different agencies working in partnership for the benefit of the community. Otonabee Conservation’s purchase of the abandoned C.N. rail line, together with the support of the Kiwanis Club of Peterborough, the Otonabee Conservation Foundation, the City of Peterborough, and the Province of Ontario, all helped to make this project a reality.

With great community enthusiasm and support, the Jackson Creek Trail was officially opened and recognized as a section of the Trans Canada Trail in June, 1995.

Over the years, community volunteers have assisted Otonabee Conservation in the repair and resurfacing of the bridges that cross over Jackson Creek. A generous THANK YOU to all volunteers for your support!


There is much to see along the trail as you leave Jackson Park and proceed west. You will pass through upland forested areas, large open agricultural areas, lowlands, wooded valley slopes, and a large wetland before reaching the end at Ackison Road. Each one of these areas contains its own unique and interesting habitat and associated plants and wildlife.

The main feature along the entire length of the trail, disappearing occasionally behind the forest, is Jackson Creek. The Creek is largely responsible for the abundance of diverse plant and animal life, providing optimum viewing opportunities along the entire length of the Jackson Creek Trail. Enjoy your time on the trail!


The Jackson Creek weir is an important water control structure, designed to reduce the potential flooding of the creek downstream. Constructed in 1988, the weir is strategically placed to take advantage of the natural storage capacity of the wetland while allowing the same volume of water to pass through the weir as under normal conditions. During flood events the weir holds back high flows as designed, protecting areas downstream. The weir can be seen from Bridge #2009. Further upstream there are log ice booms, which protect the weir from potential ice jamming and related damage during the winter/spring runoff period.


The Jackson Creek Trail has four bridges along its length that span Jackson Creek. The most westerly bridge – #2017 – has been replaced due to failing condition.

The principle concern with the bridge was the deteriorating abutments and wing walls which are essentially its main supports.

The engineering and design for the bridge and project administration was done by D.M. Wills Associates of Peterborough.

The construction work, which involved the installation of erosion control measures, removal of the existing bridge and footings, construction of new bridge footings and placement of the new bridge was undertaken by Drain Brothers Limited of Norwood.

The new bridge was installed on November 27th and the trail was re-opened on December 1st.

On December 18th, Otonabee Conservation hosted the official opening of the new bridge with the cutting of the garland. Michael Goodyear, Trail Development Manager, Eastern Canada with the Trans Canada Trail presented Andy Mitchell, Chair of Otonabee Conservation, with a financial contribution of $35,000 to the Jackson Creek Trail bridge replacement project.

Given the subdivision developments that are planned or underway directly north and south of the Jackson Creek Trail, the trail will see an increase in use in the coming years. In order to meet the growing demand for recreational use of the trail, installation of the new bridge is timely, and additional repairs in other locations along the trail will need to be undertaken over the next few years.

Select locations along the length of the trail will require the replacement of culverts and a surface treatment (application of new crushed stone). The total cost for the replacement of bridge #2017, rehabilitation of the other 3 bridges and trail repairs is estimated at $400,000. Otonabee Conservation will fund the projects over 5 years.

Otonabee Conservation invites anyone wishing to make a charitable financial gift in support of the Jackson Creek Trail improvements to select one of the following options:

  • Donating online, or
  • Visit the Otonabee Conservation office located at 250 Milroy Drive, Peterborough.
  • Jackson Creek
  • Dedication of a Red Maple Tree commemorating The Great Trail, August 2017