White Bluff: The Bruce’s Hidden Bouldering Area

Tired of dealing with the crowds of Bruce Peninsula National Park? Just north of the town of Lion’s Head lies White Bluff. The area packs much of the perks of its more popular neighbour further up the peninsula but without the crowds.

White Bluffs is mainly known for it’s sport and trad climbing. Like many areas in Ontario, climbing is tolerated but is a highly sensitive issue so care must be taken to respect the environment and surrounding landowners. The bouldering at White Bluff is lesser known and as a result is much less developed. The setting alone makes up for it.

Access

Parking is available on 40 Hills Rd at the Bruce trail parking lot. There are two options after that. You can walk down to the end of Whippoorwill Rd and access the trail to the bouldering area via the west side of the fence or you can access the beach via the Bruce Trail and the Reeds Dump side trail. Reeds Dump is an overnight rest area meant for Bruce Trail thru hikers. If you do choose to use this area then please LEAVE NO TRACE and absolutely NO FIRES.

The view from Reeds Dump

The Climbing

The boulders at White Bluff host a wide variety of problems ranging from easy V0 to the V6 range. The area typically is fully thawed out by early May however if you don’t like cold water then maybe postpone your trip a few weeks as water levels will likely be higher earlier in the season. Poison ivy can be an issue around the cliffs and on the trail but we didn’t encounter any in the immediate bouldering area.

I’ve included a few pictures to give you a sense of what to expect.

An archived version of the bouldering guide can be found here.

Map

Nearby

  • The peninsula section of the Bruce Trail hosts some of the best views in all of Ontario.
  • Lion’s Head Provincial Nature Reserve south of town is a premier Ontario climbing destination.
  • Tobermory to the north has arguably the best freshwater diving in the world.
  • Additional climbing areas on the Bruce include Halfway Log Dump, TV tower Crag, and Cape Croker.

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