Sydenham River, Grey County
GPS: N 44 31.583 W 80 56.072
Access: Easy, 2 Minutes
Address: 101 Falls Rd, Owen Sound, ON N4K 5N6, Canada
Known as “the best waterfalls in the area” is the most visited, anytime of year! One of three waterfalls that surround the City of Owen Sound, Inglis Falls is the best known and most visited. Situated in the heart of the 200-hectare Inglis Falls Conservation Area, Inglis Falls is an 18 metre high cascade, created by the Sydenham River meeting the edge of the Niagara Escarpment. The erosive power of the water has carved a deep gorge at the base of the falls. On a clear day you can see down the valley into the City of Owen Sound and out to the Owen Sound harbour.
There is something for everybody; a viewing platform for those unable to see over the stone wall, 7.42 km of trails of various difficulty, access to the Bruce Trail, more than 20 species of ferns, bird watching opportunities, a series of geological potholes, historical remains of a grist mill, washrooms, picnic facilities and visitor information centre.
Inglis Falls is rich in history – starting in 1843 when Peter Inglis immigrated to Canada and settled in this area. In 1845 Inglis purchased a small existing grist mill built two years previously by a Mr. Boyd, and 300 acres of deeded Crown land. It was in 1862 that Inglis replaced the old gristmill with a new four-storey mill that produced flour, bran and shorts (feed for animals).
Other ventures of Inglis’ included building a sawmill a quarter of a mile downstream of the falls. Peter Inglis also built a woollen mill on the eastside of the river on the brink of the falls. Here were manufactured tweeds, flannels and “rainbow” blankets, so called because of the three coloured stripes at each end. The woollen mill was destroyed by fire around 1885 and rebuilt only to burn down again in 1901.
Management of the mill was passed on to Inglis’ oldest son, William A., in 1886. William’s son, Victor, managed the mill until 1932. Eighty-seven years of steady operation under the Inglis family name is an amazing record which very few industries in this area of the province can surpass or equal.
In 1932, the property was obtained by the City of Owen Sound for water rights. The mill was idle for two years, until purchased by Emil Henkel. He ran the mill until 1945 when a fire completely destroyed it.
In 1960 the former North Grey Region Conservation Authority (now the Grey Sauble Conservation Authority) acquired what is presently the Inglis Falls Conservation Area. Today all that remains of that earlier industrial scene are the family home, a stone building, the silent millstones and the enduring beauty of Inglis Falls.
Information source: GreySauble.Ca
Photo Source: Our Instagram follower Lifeonthebay