Recreation & Leisure - Conservation Areas

Maidstone Conservation Area

Directions:  1561 Lakeshore Road 209, Turn south on County Road 46 (by County Road 25)

This 20 hectare site is perfect for an afternoon trip to the country. The area includes a winding 1.5 kilometre trail through an oak-hickory woodland. Walk the trail through this classic Carolinian Forest and see if you can spot the Signal Tree, and pass along the upper meandering reaches of the Puce River.

Pack a picnic and enjoy lunch in a restful setting. Great for family get-togethers. With well managed trails and boardwalks, Maidstone Conservation Area is very accessible and makes a pleasant excursion.

Parking, Washroom faciliies available.

Activities:  Cycling, hiking, bird watching, photography, picnicking, cross-country skiing

Tremblay Beach Conservation Area

Directions:  10998 St. Clair Rd. Take County Road 35 (in the northeast corner of the county) north through Stoney Point. Turn east at the shoreline road and follow it to Tremblay Beach.

Tremblay Beach Conservation Area is situated on the shore of beautiful Lake St. Clair and is bordered on the east side by Little Creek. Trails can be enjoyed along the shoreline as well as alongside the Creek. The lake here is shallow and the bottom is sandy but not suitable for swimming due to aquatic vegetation.

Tremblay Beach Conservation Area is one of only two marshes remaining on Essex County’s Lake St. Clair Shoreline, along with Ruscom Shores Conservation Area. A viewing tower will give you a bird’s eye perspective of the abundant and interesting wildlife in the marsh, and the shoreline and extensive marsh make it ideal for spring birding, or just a quiet walk by the water.

Portable Washroom Facilities
Viewing Tower
Picnic tables

Ruscom Shores Conservation Area

Directions: 145 County Road 2. Follow County Road 2 at the northeast end of the county to Surf Club Drive, east of Deerbrook. Take Surf Club north to the parking lot.

Situated alongside Lake St. Clair, Ruscom Shores Conservation Area is an attractive natural marshland area with a well-managed trail ideal for some outdoor enjoyment and tranquillity.   Ruscom Shores represents one of only two marshes still in existence on Essex County’s north shoreline. This area also supports a habitat restoration area, which includes a tallgrass prairie site, was completed in 2001.

This quaint 120 acre Conservation Area, designated an Environmentally Significant Area, is great for peaceful walks and nature viewing. Ruscom Shores is perfect for spotting shorebirds, waterfowl and other spring migrants, as well as many prairie plants.

Viewing Tower
Picnic Pavilion
Portable washroom facilities

Big "O" Conservation Area

Directions: Highway 77.  From Comber, turn left (east) on County Road 46, turn right on Windsor, turn right on Elizabeth, entrance is on south side of road.  Open year round 8 a.m. – 10:30 p.m., free of charge. (Big O is right in Comber)

The Big O Drain Tile Company donated this 4.5 hectare (11 acre) property to the Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority in 1992.

The Big “O” Conservation Area is one of southwestern Ontario’s birding ‘hot spots’. In early May, many species of migratory birds arrive at this conservation area after crossing Lake Erie.

Lighthouse Conservation Area

Lighthouse is located at:  19028 Harbour Drive, Lighthouse Cove

100 Thames Street, Chatham, Ontario, Canada  N7L 2Y8
Phone: (519) 354-7310
  Fax: (519) 352-3435

Directions: From Chatham, follow Riverview Drive to Tecumseh Drive, north into Lighthouse Cove

Lighthouse Conservation Area is a 1 hectare park located at the mouth of the Thames River at Lake St. Clair. The lighthouse is 200 years old and is one of the three oldest on the Great Lakes. A pioneer family named Cartier settled at the mouth of the Thames River in the early 1800’s and built the first lighthouse. The original frame structure was destroyed by fire during the War of 1812. In 1818, the present structure was built and extended in height to its present level after Confederation. The original Cartier family looked after the lighthouse for about 130 years until William "Dick" Cartier died in 1950. The Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority obtained the lighthouse in 1973 and has since moved the structure and rebuilt it stone by stone.

Rowsom Tilbury West Conservation Area

Rowsom Tilbury West
151725 S Middle Road. East on County Road 46 to County Road 37, turn right (south) to S Middle Rd., turn left, conservation area is located at the end of the road on the left side

This 63 acre park has picnic shelters, fishing and hiking along the trails, and also is designated as one of the Memorial Forest sites.