The benefits of getting outside

Many of the benefits of spending time outdoors come from the opportunities to be physically active but spending time in nature can have benefits to our mental health too! 

Spending time outside can:

  • reduce stress

  • improved mood

  • improve attention and memory

  • Improve sleep quality 

  • Provide opportunities for social connection

Luckily, Lakehead students have a lot of options for hiking trails- check out some of the SHW staff’s favourites! 

Thunder Bay Campus

My go-to fall hike is the Finger Point trail by the Minnesota border, it’s a bit of a drive but the views from the top are spectacular and you can also tack on the High Falls Trail

-Lindsey Wachter, Health Promoter 

I’m not a super hiker, but I love to walk among all the colourful leaves in the fall.  My favourite place to go is Centennial Park towards Trowbridge Falls.  Hiking at Centennial has a lot of options, especially if you don’t have a lot of time.

-Cheryl D’Angelo, Director Student Health and Wellness 

The James Duncan Trail has some spectacular views – especially at this time of year with the changing colours.  

-Irene Pugliese, Manager of Wellness Services

I really enjoy the Mink Mountain trail. It’s extremely beautiful at sunrise and especially fun when going with friends. 

-Virginie Franks, Student Peer Wellness Educator Lead

Orillia Campus

My favourite spot to hike in Orillia is at Scouts Valley. Each season offers something different, from beautiful fall colours, to peaceful winter snowfalls, to new spring wildflowers, and flowing summer rivers. The landscape is breathtaking any time of year. One of the entrances is also within walking distance to Lakehead Orillia Campus, making it a convenient option to get outdoors and connect with nature! 

Another great spot to walk in Orillia is along the Tudhope Park Loop. The trail is paved and great for running, walking, and biking! The route gently curves around the edge of Lake Couchiching, offering gorgeous views, picnic tables, and a sandy beach! Whatever your favourite activity Tudhope Park is sure to get you active and out in nature!

-Brooke Andrews, Student Wellness Associate 

Wooden bridge crossing a ravine, in the woods during fall, leaves coloured orange