About Borer’s Falls
Borers Falls (or Borer’s Falls) was the last waterfall that we visited before spending our final days in Canada in Toronto during our October 2013 visit to the waterfall-laced Hamilton region. My experience with this waterfall was a fine way to cap off the waterfalling in the area because it had a very satisfying 16m plunge with enough flow to show well on my photographs, which was further complemented by the Autumn colors accenting the scene. Although the weather was in between showers and overcast skies, my timing was fortunate in that the lighting was perfect for waterfall photography as you can see from the photo at the top of this page.
From reading the literature prior to this visit, I had read that Borer’s Creek tended to have pretty light flow and would probably be the most reliable during the Spring and early Summer months. It reminded me of a smaller version of the impressive Tews Falls except this place was way quieter and seemingly obscure compared to most of the more well-known Hamilton waterfalls of similar stature to this.
My hike to this falls started from car park for the Rock Chapel Sanctuary (see directions below). I then followed along the Escarpment Trail, which followed along the Rock Chapel Road. There were white hashes along this trail indicating that it also coincided with the Bruce Trail. The narrow trail typically would be on the side of the guard rail away from the road, but for the short stretches where I had to cross over bridges and drainages, I had to cross the guardrails and go back onto the shoulder of the Rock Chapel Road before going back across the guardrails onto the relative safety of the narrow dirt trail again.
After a few minutes of following along the Escarpment Trail (probably for about 400-500m or so), after the last bridge to cross, the trail then entered an open area flanked by tall grass and shrubs on one side and the thicker foliage surrounding the gorge on the other. The trail left the Rock Chapel Rd at this point and continued for a few more paces until I reached a viewing area yielding the view you see at the top of this page.
I was pretty content with my viewing experience from this observation area. However, my Waterfalls of Ontario book mentioned that there was a difficult access into the depths of the gorge where it would be possible to go behind the waterfall. Given that it was rainy and I didn’t feel the need to push my luck to improve upon an already pretty good view, I didn’t do it and can’t say more about what that alternate approach would be like.
It took me about a half-hour away from the car though a large chunk of this time was spent on the hike. Thus, I reflected this slightly longer length of the hike (at least compared to most of the Hamilton Waterfalls which didn’t really require much walking) in the slightly bumped up difficulty rating.
The first way would be to take the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW) along the shores of Lake Ontario towards its junction with Hwy 403 west. This would bypass the City of Hamilton on its east side. Once on the Hwy 403 East, continue for about 7km then take the Hwy 6 north exit.
The other way would be to take the Hwy 6 north from western downtown Hamilton from one of its many onramps. Then, continue towards the Hwy 6 north exit, leaving the highway’s transition into becoming Hwy 403 east.
The Hwy 6 north exit leaves the freeway, which continues north for just under 3km towards its intersection with Hwy 5. Turn left onto Hwy 5 and continue for about 1.8km towards Rock Chapel Rd on the left. Turning left to go onto Rock Chapel Rd, continue for another 1.6km to the Rock Chapel Sanctuary car park on the left.
There was a self-help paying kiosk to park in this area. The Escarpment Trail leading to Borers Falls started from the end of the car park backtracking along the Rock Chapel Road that you would have driven to get here.
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