Where is the Maitland Trail?

The Maitland Trail is a 52-kilometer hiking trail that stretches between Goderich and Auburn, in beautiful Southwestern Ontario.  The trail is available to the public year round.  For more information and current trail conditions, click here. The Maitland Trail Association maintains over 80 kilometers of trail, including The Maitland Trail (our main trail) and numerous side trails, and other trails in the Goderich/Auburn area.   Our Trail Guide is available for purchase or click here to download a zipped kmz file.


Is cycling permitted on MTA trails?

Of approximately 83 kilometers of trail that MTA maintains, cycling is only permitted on the GART (a section of the G2G Rail Trail).  All other trails are foot traffic use only as required by the land owners who graciously allow the trails to cross their land. In 2022, MTA hike leaders started organizing guided bike rides.  For the latest schedule and more information click here. To find trails and cycling routes in the area, download the Huron County Cycling Guide.


What is an MTA Subscription?

A subscription is a convenient way for you to pay your membership fees or to make donations automatically using PayPal.  Membership subscriptions are for 5 years and you will receive a membership card each year, and a reminder when your membership fees are due next.  Donation subscriptions are $5 per month and have no expiry date. You’ll receive a tax receipt each January.  Subscriptions may be cancelled by you at any time through PayPal.


Why does MTA use PayPal?

PayPal is convenient and an increasing number of people prefer to pay online, rather than using regular mail.  We try to be accommodating where possible.  Note: to use PayPal, you don’t have to have an account with them; you can use a credit card through PayPal.    Also, PayPal saves our volunteers time and money.  We love our volunteers and want to keep them happy.


Do I have to be a member to join organized MTA hikes?

No.  Non-members are always welcome to join our free organized hikes and bike rides as long as you register in advance and sign the online waiver. See the benefits of becoming a member.


Do I have to wear hiking shoes or boots on the trails?

We recommend that you wear sturdy footwear appropriate for the weather and terrain. Some of our trails are wide and flat and are well suited to hiking sandals. However, some trails are quite rugged and natural, and home to sharp sticks, spiders and other prickly, stingy things such as poison ivy.  We want you to protect your feet and ankles, and have an enjoyable hike.

Please note that for organized hikes, a hike leader has the right to refuse a participant who they deem to be unfit or unprepared for a hike. Your safety and enjoyment are important to us.


Do I have to pre-register for MTA organized hikes?

Yes.  Contact the Hike Leader at least 24 hours before the hike so they can plan accordingly.  Some hikes require transportation or last minute details to be communicated, and some winter outings are weather dependent.  Guided hikes also have a limited number of participants. 


How do I join an organized hike?

Check the schedule and contact the Hike Leader at least 24 hours before the hike.  Be sure to thoroughly read the hike description so you are aware of the difficulty level, length of time and all other important details. 


Can I bring my dog and/or child on a hike?

Dogs on leash and children are usually welcome on hikes, although not all hikes are suitable in length or difficulty for those with very short legs.  It’s best to call the hike leader to ensure your dog and/or child will enjoy the hike.  Please be sure to clean up after your pets.


Am I permitted to ski, cycle, snowmobile, or horseback ride on MTA trails?

Permission of landowners is granted for foot traffic only, i.e. no motorized vehicles.  Also, there are many sections where cycling and horseback riding are not appropriate or safe.

Note:  Most of the GART (part of the G2G Rail Trail) is suitable for snowmobiling for those with valid permits, and horseback riding, excluding the section west of Highway 21, and the Menesetung Bridge.


How do I earn an End-to-End badge?

You may order an End-to-End badge here. You can earn the badge if you hike the entire trail on your own or during the MTA guided tours.  Have you heard of the annual MTA Camino?


Are the trails safe?

MTA volunteers work very hard to ensure that trails are as safe as reasonably possible.  While enjoying your hike, please be responsible on the trails and follow our safety guidelines.  Always be aware of your surroundings including possible wind damage that could shake branches loose from above.  Please report any unsafe conditions that you encounter.


How can I volunteer with MTA?

Volunteers are vital to the MTA, so we have numerous volunteer opportunities.  Trail Rangers adopt a portion of the trail, deal with small maintenance issues, and report larger issues to the maintenance crew. Our Thursday Trail Crew fix larger problems, and continually improve structures and access. Hike Leaders are trained to lead hikes throughout the year.  Occasionally, we also require additional people to help out at special events or administration.  See the list of opportunities.


Is my membership fee a tax-deductible donation?

MTA is registered with Canada Revenue Agency as a non-profit organization and membership fees are not considered to be tax-deductible donations. We are only permitted to issue a receipt if there is no return monetary value for the donor.  A membership has value and, therefore, does not qualify.  Of course, we will gladly issue a tax receipt for donations.


Where does my donation to MTA go?

Excellent question! Donations are an important source of revenue for the Maitland Trail Association. We are an all-volunteer organization. Monies raised through memberships, donations, etc. are used for trail maintenance, event funding, insurance, and administration.