Haliburton Highlands Land Trust

About the Land Trust


Haliburton Highlands Land Trust is a non-profit, non-governmental, registered environmental charity. Its mission is to protect the natural heritage of Haliburton County for future generations.


The Haliburton Highlands Land Trust will work to conserve the plants, wildlife and clean water of Haliburton County to ensure a legacy of forests, fields and wetlands, and the species they nurture. The Haliburton Highlands Land Trust will do this by:

  • Identifying significant lands and waters of natural or cultural value;
  • Working cooperatively with individuals, groups and governments to identify, manage and/or research areas of interest;
  • Acquiring significant properties and/or conservation easements through donation or purchase;
  • Supporting stewardship planning for privately owned natural areas;
  • Encouraging private and government sectors to set aside significant natural areas.


Land trusts are non-profit, charitable organizations which have as their core activities the acquisition of land or interests in land, such as conservation easements, for the purpose of conservation. There are over 35 land trusts in Ontario.

On September 6, 2003, Environment Haliburton! hosted a forum to see if there was public interest in forming a Land Trust as a way of protecting the natural heritage of Haliburton County. In January 2004, seven people agreed to sit on the first Board of Directors.

Haliburton Highlands Land Trust (HHLT) was incorporated on March 23, 2005. On May 26, 2005, HHLT was registered as a charitable organization, and on October 13, 2005, HHLT was approved as a potential recipient of gifts under the Ecological Gifts Program of Environment Canada.

On March 23, 2007, under the Ecological Gifts Program, HHLT acquired its first land donation, a 22-acre island on Kennisis Lake. This island is now officially named Norah’s Island to honour the memory of Bruce Carruthers’ wife Norah who always wanted the island to remain in its wilderness state. Norah’s Island is jointly managed by HHLT and the Kennisis Lake Cottage Owners Association.

HHLT is primarily interested in acquiring lands of ecological significance for conservation purposes. It works to select only those properties which clearly have long-term benefit to the public and can be maintained by HHLT in perpetuity.

On December 23, 2009, HHLT acquired its second land donation. The Dahl Family transferred ownership of the Dahl Forest property to the Land Trust under the Ecological Gifts Program. The Dahl Forest is approximately 500 Acres and straddles the Burnt River for 2.7 kilometres.

More than 100,000 trees have been planted on the property and its ecological significance is evident in the diversity of species and habitats found there. The Dahl Forest is a model of conservation planning and HHLT is looking forward to continuing the excellent stewardship of the Dahl Family.

Contact Haliburton Highlands Land Trust

Rachel Gillooly
Program Coordinator
P.O. Box 792
Minden, Ontario  K0M 2K0
Phone: (705) 754-2532

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