It has been a while since I hit the trails in Hamilton; a city known for its vast amount of waterfalls. On this unexpectedly snowy Monday, I set my sights on the Devils Punch Bowl: a unique landscape draped in red and browns with a high cascade of water. However, as they always seem to do…my plans changed and I ended up taking a hike from Buttermilk Falls to Albion Falls. The main reason I shied away from the Devils Punch Bowl was because the price of parking…$5.00. I really hate paying for a hike, it is my greatest outdoor pet peeve. I quickly looked up other waterfalls in the area and found two which were close together along with free parking and just like that, my adventure took on a new destination.
When I arrived at Buttermilk Falls, I noticed that we were the only car in the lot. Not a bad thing or even a surprising thing considering it was a Monday and snow was falling. I tightened my hood and pulled on my mittens, with the falls close by I knew that it would be a windy, wintry hike and I was right. Following the sound of rushing water, I came to my first destination fairly quickly, as Buttermilk Falls is right under the street we drove in on and you can get neat pictures from both the aerial and side views.
I am lead to believe (based on pictures I searched for on Instagram) that you can also reach the base of the falls but I have no idea how. This also makes me believe that coming here in the summer may be a bad idea due to how convenient and accessible the area is, it is just begging to be a tourist hot spot. However, as I mentioned we were the only ones here and it was nice. The falls are thin and tiered, surrounded by rock formation and trees, pretty much everything which is to be expected with a waterfall in Ontario. Since this is such an accessible point, the tunnel which the water streamed out of was covered in graffiti and there was garbage floating at the top of the falls…very unappealing as well as a stark contrast to what I believe waterfalls represent; serenity and respect for nature.
After taking many pictures and attempting to view the falls from every angle, I moved on towards the second set of falls on my list. The hike to Albion falls was almost entirely cliff side with some pretty views of the mountain, trees and river. On a side note, when the snow falls in the great outdoors it is so beautiful as well as quiet and quaint. Snow can be many things but on this day it was magical. Moving through the skeletal trees and trudging around the cliff during a snowfall, possibly made this hike much more appealing.