If there’s one place that’s like no other when it comes to wildlife habitats in Ontario, it just might be the Loring Deer Yard.
Home to up to 10,000 (!) white-tailed deer who “yard up” here annually (and particularly in October and November through the winter), the Loring Deer Yard is a serene area where these beautiful animals gather for mutual protection against the harsher weather to come and the potential lack of food.
What made the deer pick Loring-Restoule, Ontario for their winter stomping grounds? It was, literally, the hands that fed them.
Years ago, concerned that white-tailed deer weren’t making it through the Canadian winters in these parts, the provincial government partnered with community groups to feed the deer in a concentrated area. The subsidized feeding of the deer no longer happens, but the instinct for food and survival means the deer keep coming anyway.
This is great news for outdoor enthusiasts who’d like to see a deer (or a dozen) up close. When the herd arrives in late fall, it’s not unusual to see tons of them right in the community of Port Loring, as well as in the lush forests here. The best place to spot them, however, is on the heritage trails that run right through the epicenter of their gathering.
Located 5km down Little River Rd in the Golden Valley, the Deer Yard features 3.6km of trails on Crown Land that wind around stunning wetlands. From May to November, the trails are nicely maintained by local stakeholders, including the Loring Restoule Business Association. Along this easy walk, you’ll find interpretive signage to learn more about the area, and the original viewing station still standing and in great condition – optimal for spotting one of these gorgeous creatures. And what a perfect way to view the amazing fall colours in the region, or to explore an Ontario forest in the spring and summer!
Head to the Loring-Restoule region of Ontario to explore Nature and get close to some beautiful white-tailed deer. The Deer Yard is an experience unique to the province – and one you’ll never forget.
To plan your stay, click here.