Highland Hills to Boardwalk Loop

This is a ~ 7.5 km loop that returns on the other side of Henry Sturm Creek upon arriving at Ira Needles Blvd. If you wish to visit the Boardwalk (e.g. lunch), one should walk north on the Ira Needles Blvd sidewalk and cross Ira Needles Blvd at the round about for safety reasons. There is a way to pass under Ira Needles Blvd to the "Walmart" side through the tunnel used by the train tracks. This route has been used by a number of people but is seasonally dependent (can be rather wet with a "stream") and is not recommended for safety reasons.


START / FINISH: Highland Hills Mall, Kitchener

It is suggested you use the parking lot near the Highland Hills Beer Store at about 43.430845, -80.526831.

Description of this 7.5 km Loop Hike (counter clockwise)

NOTE: A print friendly PDF file of the list below is available for download here.

1. From the Highland Hills parking lot walk past the Beer Store to the traffic light at Highland Rd and Fischer-Hallman Rd and cross twice to the sidewalk in front of the Husky Gas Station.
2. Proceed along the Fischer-Hallman Rd sidewalk in front of the Husky Gas Station a short distance (~ 60m) to Sandrock Creek.
3. At Sandrock Creek turn right (north east) along the trail with the creek on your left for about 520 m.
4. As you read Step 4, also examine the first map image below. Take the trail left (north) across Sandrock Creek on a steel bridge for about 70 m & veer right for ~ 180 m to Victoria Street South [Shortly after crossing the bridge, veering right look for the confluence of Sandrock Creek with Henry Sturm Creek. Henry Sturm Creek will be on the right (east). The two creeks form a confluence. As you proceed to Victoria Street South the creek on the right is now called Henry Sturm Creek. The two creeks merge at about 43.436860, -80.522509.]
5. Upon arriving at Victoria Street South the trail to follow is straight ahead across the street. CAUTION:  Due to heavy traffic, it is suggested you use the traffc lights nearby to cross Victoria Street South and then return to the trail on the north side of Victoria Street.
6. From Victoria Street follow the trail  for about 0.5 km with Henry Sturm Creek on your left to and under Fischer-Hallman Road. You have entered a section called Monarch Woods. Monarch Woods has two routes passing from east to west. One route is north of Henry Sturm Creek and the other one is south of it. For this walk I suggest taking the north route through Monarch Woods(creek on your left) that is approximately 0.8 m long. You exit Monarch Woods at 43.437451, -80.539617 on a cirve of Stoke Drive.
7. Cross Stoke Drive and follow the trail about 0.2 km to a large open field (43.438138, -80.542712). Leaving the groomed trail, cross the open field in a north-west direction until you arrive at a stone dust trail and veer left (west) and parallel to the rain tracks on your right. [Note that off to your right, over the train tracks, but not visible, is Ressurection Catholic Secondary School.].
8. Continue a short distance until you arrive at an obvious tunnel [see image below.] and pass through the tunnel to the north side of the train tracks.
9. After passing through the tunnel veer right then left and upward for about 0.1 km on a concrete path. Near the top keep left (west) on the trail behind housing. [Do not go out to Resurrection Drive.] Follow this trail south-west for about 0.4 km to a Stormwater Pond. As you walk this segment the train tracks and Henry Sturm Creek will be on the left (housing on the right).
10. As you arrive at the Stormwater Pond the trail becomes a large pad. Veer left to the south side of the Stormwater Pond to a "bridge" (refer to the map and photograph below) and a footpath. Follow the footpath for about 170 m where it rejoins a paved trail behind houses.
11. Continue westward for about 0.2 km until you are at an embankment that leads upward to the Ira Needles Blvd. Go up to the sidewalk and turn left (south) if you are not going to the Boardwalk.
12. Once you are at about 43.432184, -80.555110, turn left and down the embankment to the south side of the train tracks and entering a green space called Huck Park Greenway.
13. Proceed eastward on the grass through Huck Park Greenway staying close to the the train tracks (on your left). After about 0.16 km you will proceed eastward on a stone dust trail with houses on the right and the train tracks on the left.
14. At about 43.435124, -80.550055 veer right and out to Westforest Trail (street) and follow the sidewalk eastward for about 0.3 km.
15. Veer left and off the sidewalk onto the trail that takes you to the train tunnel. Veer right (not passing through the tunnel) and follow the same route back out to Stove Drive.
16. Cross Stoke Drive and go right about 30 m and enter Monrach Woods at about 43.437151, -80.539476. Proceed through Monarch Woods on the south side of Henry Sturm Creek to an exit at C>D>E depicted on the image below.
17. Cross Victoria Street at the designated crosswalk (43.434978, -80.533212) and follow the sidewalk about 0.4 km down Oprington Drive, left on Bankside sidewalk for about 0.3 km. Just after passing Chartwell Bankside Retirement Residence turn right on a path out to Highland Road and the traffic light. Cross over and head to your car(s).


Confluence of Sandrock & Henry Sturm Creeks
43.436858, -80.522505


Tunnel Under Train Tracks
43.436950, -80.547420


Bridging at Stormwater Pond
43.435234, -80.552319

Stormwater Bridging

Alternate Route in Yellow

Stormwater Pond

Return Through Monarch Woods

Benjamin Road Trail Sign

Various pathways to Ira Needles from
Highland Hills Mall and Back


GPS Tracks for Download

HELP: If clicking on the links does not provide a download option, try RIGHT clicking the link (especially the .gpx file) and then choose "Save Links As" (or equivalent) from the drop-down menu. Pick a download location (e.g. desktop) for the file.

HighlandHillsBoardwalkLoop.gpx OR HighlandHillsBoardwalkLoop.kml