This is not a "blog" in the sense of a daily journal but a place for me to post GPS trail maps of mountain biking and hiking trails, particularly but not exclusively, in the western Greenbelt in Ottawa, Ontario.

Date codes do not reflect actual posting dates but are manipulated to allow me to order the posts in a thematic order.

Please note that images, maps and photos, will be displayed in reduced size. To see the enlarged images click (or multi-click) on them.


Marlborough Forest Roads

My first experience with the Marlborough Forest was in trying to follow the Rideau Trail through the forest and map it with my GPS. I started following it with the Rideau Trail map along the forest roads till it went off onto single track and almost immediately became a messy mud hole with signs of some kind of tractor or ATV traffic. It was clearly not rideable and an unsustainable route. I then decided to just start by mapping the forest roads.

The closest access point to Kanata is along Kettles Road south of Richmond, near the rail line not far from the South end of Munster Road. There is also a small parking area at the end of O'Neil Road and a large parking lot along Roger Stevens Drive.

Over several days I followed all the interconnecting roads starting from Kettles Road. There may be other roads in the forest that do not connect to these roads. The roads are closed to motorized traffic during the summer period due to fire hazard but are open during the spring and fall and open to snowmobiles in the winter. These are rough forest roads and I would be cautious driving them, although trucks and SUVs with high clearance should have no problems.

Biking through the forest you do feel like you are in the wilderness. The only drawback is that the width of the roads partly detracts from the experience. If it was single track it would be wonderful. The real advantage is that you cannot do any harm riding them when they are wet and muddy, during those times when the MTB trails are too wet and muddy to ride. They really are fun to tool around on and there is lots of distance to cover. I learned that when I had to walk my bike back to the parking area with a broken chain.

There are a lot of side trails and cart tracks off the roads. I don't think much of it could really be described as single track but there is still a lot more in the system for me to explore and map with my GPS. So hopefully these maps will be updated in the future.

GPS gpx Files

The gpx file for this trail system (and other trail systems) can be downloaded by clicking the link below:

GPX files - Google Docs

If you do download the gpx file please email me at and let me know so that I have an idea of how many people are downloading and using the files.

Posted 2009-09-10
Updated 2011-04-10


Don Hackett said...

Thanks, Richard!

I've been studying your trail maps and commentaries with great interest. I've walked pretty much all of Stony Swamp, gotten lost on 27&28, tried to figure out the undocumented parts of Lime Kiln, and puzzled out the side trails of Old Quarry. At last I can point to where I was, on your maps. Looking forward to your maps of Bruce Pit and trail 29 (has many side trails!). Keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

I'm a trail runner and have used your map. Excellent.
Turning 50 next year and want to run 50 k. Is there a way to add a scale to your maps.

rww said...

Actually most of the maps have a scale on them although with the Google Earth ones you have to look very carefully.

If you have software that reads the GPX files you can measure distances along a planned route quite easily.



About Me

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Richard W. Woodley was born in Sudbury, Ontario in 1950. He earned an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Laurentian University where he was the News Editor of the student newspaper Lambda and active in student politics. He was active in the New Democratic Party and Waffle in Sudbury and Kanata, as well as Kanata municipal politics. He was a member of the Bridlewood Residents Hydro Line Committee (BRHLC) and creator of the now archived Bridlewood Electromagnetic Fields (EMFs) Information Service. He worked on Parliament Hill for 33 years indexing the Debates of the House of Commons (Hansard) and it's committees. Richard has been an outdoorsperson and environmentalist for most of his life and a life long cyclist who recently took up mountain biking. He is active on and a member of the Ottawa Mountain Bike Association (OMBA).

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To read my thoughts on mountain biking, cycling, social and political philosophy and the current issues of the day read my blog, THE FIFTH COLUMN.