The Crack in the Rock

Roundtrip: 1km

Difficulty: Difficult

Location:? Marathon, ON

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The Crack in the Rock is a 110 metre long crack right through a mountain that you can hike through. You start on the CN tracks near the Pic River and end on the top of the mountain where you will gain fantastic views over Lake Superior, the Pic River, and Neys Provincial Park. This hike is not for the claustrophobic!

I find it strange that I can’t find a reference to this route in any guidebook or website despite the fact it is so well-known to locals.

From Thunder Bay drive East on Highway 17 for approximately 265km. 50km past Terrace Bay turn right onto the first dirt road after you cross the bridge over the Pic River and follow it to where it ends at a CN maintenance site.

Park near the train trestle and then walk across the trestle over the Pic River to the rock face. Once you cross the tracks the Crack in the Rock is located 240 metres from the Pic River on the North side. Once you enter the opening it does not look like the path is wide enough to follow all the way up, but it does stay about the same width the whole way working its way upward.? It is unnerving to pass under the large boulders that are wedged into the crack above.

9 thoughts on “The Crack in the Rock”

  1. All valid points Monica! The safety considerations of this hike definitely fell through the cracks. We will update the information with all of your comments in mind. Thank you for your concern for others and for bringing this one to our attention.

  2. The directions for this hike are EXTREMELY dangerous. That trestle is on CP rails mainline. It’s WAY too high to jump off and you don’t want to try and outrun a train(it’s a very long trestle and the crack is 240M past that!) People need to take rail safety more seriously..I can’t stress how dangerous this is. The train is going downhill and you won’t hear it coming.
    There is an alternate route off the highway that brings u to the top of the crack. Amazing views and well worth the hike! I’m disappointed this site not only promotes trespassing but also puts lives at risk doing so. Anyone reading the site would have absolutely no idea that it’s not a safe place to bring your family for a hike. The view isn’t worth the risk to someone’s life.

  3. Thank you! I followed your instructions and am typing this from the view up top. Super cool!! Maybe add in the directions that the entrance is ahead on your right side after crossing the trestle.

  4. I had lived in that area for most of my formative years, and while I had not ever heard about this rock crack climbing experience. Yes, several years ago several male family members and I (with valued assistance from my companions, as I have muscle weakening but, dang it I climbed it! What a view!

  5. Just made it to the top! That’s one way to get over the fear of heights and claustrophobia all at once! Thanks for posting about it!

  6. I was just there this summer, I found out about a different route from the Marathon Chamber of Commerce ( Bassically you can access a short ~2km trail just west of the Pic river. the trail takes you overland to the top of the crack and then down a gorge to the train tracks right beside the crack. Being that I had my 3 children in tow I much appreciated this route. The trail may be a bit hard to find depending on growth of the underbush, best way to find it, is to walk down the gravel road offshoot towards the pic river and then turn around and walk back up and you will probably spot the blue trail marker through the underbrush. At least that was my haphazard way of finding it. I did make a rock cairn in hope that other will find it easier before i left

  7. Great hike. Quite crazy actually. I think it is Little Pic river and it is CP track. After crossing the bridge follow the rail for 240meters. We had to squeeze under the first huge boulder. It does look to be a little narrow but we made it through, no issues. Heart rate was up there.

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