Hit the trails for a First Day Hike

Are you ready to start a new tradition for the new year?

We’ve got the secret to starting 2023 on the right foot.

Take a hike!

Two hikers in winter

A First Day Hike is a fun and healthy way to kick off the New Year. The concept is simple: on January 1, visit a provincial park near you for a hike!

You’ll feel great after spending some time in the frosty fresh air to ring in 2023!

Hiking for health

A First Day Hike promotes a year-long embrace of health and happiness in the outdoors. Plus, hiking offers head-to-toe health benefits. 

Graphics on hiking

Hiking is good for cardiovascular health and can help reduce your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke.

It’s also great at toning muscles, especially in quads, glutes, and hamstrings. Add some hills or uneven terrain for an even better cardio workout and to burn more calories.

Hikers on bridge

Hiking is good for your mind, too. Research shows that spending time outdoors may increase your attention span and creative problem-solving skills by as much as 50%.

As you travel along the trail, you’ll hear the sounds of nature all around you. Nature sounds — like birds and rushing water — have been shown to lower stress levels.

Woman hiking in a snowy forest

Woman smiling

First Day Hikes are even endorsed by doctors themselves. Dr. Melissa Lem is a family physician and director of Park Prescriptions for the BC Parks Foundation.

“From lower stress and blood pressure to a boost in your immune system and cancer-fighting proteins, the evidence is growing about the health benefits of getting active in nature,” she says.

“We are delighted to be helping Canadians celebrate the arrival of a new year, and encouraging them to get outside in a safe and healthy way!”

Ring in the new year with a First Day Hike

Take a self-guided hike with your friends and family, or find a park event near you!

Let this mark the beginning of a healthy lifestyle for the whole family!

A park for all seasons

Winter in Ontario Parks is quiet, pristine, and absolutely beautiful.

Winter trail and bridge

More than 30 provincial parks are open during the winter season, boasting a wide range of snowy fun, including skiing, skating and snowshoeing.

Interested in staying the night? Stay warm and cozy in one of our heated yurts, cabins, or cottages. Reservations can be made online or by calling 1-888-ONT-PARK.

Ready to hit the trails?

Start planning your First Day Hike now. Hiking during the winter can be fun as long as you plan ahead, be prepared, and dress for the conditions.