Hiking and skiing

Hiking and skiing are freely permitted in open countryside in summer and winter alike. You can follow hiking trails, private roads and groomed ski trails or strike out on your own

In the winter you are also allowed to cross frozen or snow-covered fields and meadows. You may use paths and roads across fenced land year-round, so long as you keep your distance from farmyards, houses and cabins.

In open country, you can stop and rest where you wish, but please stay clear of inhabited houses and cabins, and be considerate of other visitors. You may light a fire in open country, but not in or near woodland between April 15 and September 15. Don’t damage trees when gathering wood for your fire – use old, dry branches and twigs. If you build a bonfire on the shore, don’t place it directly on rock, as this may cause the rock to split.

When you are in open country, remember:

  • not to take shortcuts across fenced land, farmyards or other private property
  • to comply with bylaws governing recreational areas and nature reserves, in order to avoid erosion and protect vulnerable wildlife and plant habitats
  • not to disturb animals and birds, particularly during breeding and nesting season
  • not to damage plants, especially rare species • to use established rest areas and firepits, and to be especially careful around fire
  • to respect other people’s need for space and peace and quiet
  • not to pitch a tent close to an inhabited house or cabin (no closer than 150 m/500 ft unless local bylaws provide otherwise)
  • not to disturb livestock
  • to respect the interests of people who live and work in the countryside 

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