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Cheltenham Badlands, Caledon

4.1
Witness thousands of years of geological history at Cheltenham Badlands. While the rock formations reveal the history of the river, magnificent red hills and gullies with green rocks testify to poor farming practices in 1930s. The presence of iron oxide gives the badlands a natural red color, but due to cultivation in the area, groundwater transformed the red into green iron. Years of excessive tourism have damaged the formation. Today, you can't go down the trail, but you can see the strikingly colored rocks from the viewing area, accessible by road and including a parking lot. Bring your camera to capture the Mars-like landscape. A visit to Cheltenham Badlands represents just the start of the adventure when you use our Alton trip planner to plot your vacation.
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Cheltenham Badlands Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
204 reviews
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4.3
TripAdvisor
  • Perhaps it was my poor map-reading, but the directions from the Tourist Information Centre in Orangeville got us thoroughly lost, and we had to ask for help from the only person around - a Punjabi tru...  more »
  • Cheltenham Badlands is features a spectacular view of clay hills created by erosion from bad farming practices in 1930s. Though the hills have recently been fenced off to avoid damage, it’s worth the ...  more »
  • There are signs at the entrance. Big signs, not sure how people can miss them. On the weekends at least, the OPP have a cruiser parked in front of the signs. There is no parking along the road anymore...  more »
Google
  • A great geological site. So sad to see it so degraded by people lack of concern and care for the environment. (Taken from Geocaching site originally written by res2100) The area has been identified as an Earth Science Area of Natural and Scientific Interest (ANSI) by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. The Badlands are also part of Ontario’s Niagara Escarpment, which was designated a UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) World Biosphere Reserve in 1990. Where you are now standing was once the edge of a warm, shallow sea. Far to the southeast, a mountain range the size of the Himalayas was building, and rivers from these mountains were sending red, iron-rich sediment from the mountains into the seas, forming a large, muddy delta. The sea was teaming with life, but on land, no plants or animals had yet developed. Formation of the Badlands Queenston Shale is a very soft rock, in comparison to the harder sandstone, limestone and dolostone that make up the rest of the Niagara Escarpment. Erosion of the shale can occur rapidly if layers of other rock or vegetation are removed, and particularly if the area is impacted by grazing and large number of people. The Badlands probably began to form in the early 1900s when the trees were cut down to allow for a cattle pasture. The protective layer of vegetation was removed and the shale began to erode; although farming at the site ended in 1931, erosion of the badlands has continued to its present-day state. The Badlands are part of Ontario’s Niagara Escarpment, which was designated a UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) World Biosphere Reserve in 1990. The property contains one of the best examples of “badlands topography” development in southern Ontario, and has been identified as an Earth Science Area of Natural and Scientific Interest (ANSI) by the Ministry of Natural Resources. Badlands topography is rare in Ontario because in most areas the shale is protected from erosion by overlying hard rock (limestone, dolostone or sandstone), sand or gravel. The Badlands lie within the Inglewood Slope Environmentally Sensitive Area (ESA), which is an important groundwater discharge area. The coldwater stream on the property at the foot of the badlands is a tributary of the Credit River. As of May 2015, a fence has been installed to keep people off of the Badlands. Over the years people continue to ignore the signage and walk all over the Badlands causing them to erode at 4 times the normal rate. Because of this abuse, access to the area has become more restricted. The Bruce Trail however still goes through the site and it may be best to park a few hundred meters north of the Bruce Trail access and hike in off of CreditvView Rd which would be a hike of about 1.3km.
  • Looked great, but you couldn't go inside, you just had to watch badlands from the street. Also no parking.
  • my kids love this place.. we have been to this place numerous times but unfortunately its closed now for public access. very scenic and fun place though..
  • A beautiful nature! Nice to see an unusual place like this.
  • Nice little stop. Unfortunately it's now fenced in.

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