Craigleith Provincial Park is located on beautiful Georgian Bay. 12,000 years ago the area that we know as Craigleth was covered under 65 meters of water from retreating glacial ice, and remained that way until 1,000 years ago when the lake receded to its present levels. The area was first visited in the mid 1600’s and eventually settled for a time by French Jesuit missionaries. In 1842 the areas first European settlers, the Lunan family, as well as the Martins, Flemings and Campbell arrived and quarried stone from nearby Craigleith.
The fossilized remains of trilobites -- an extinct marine animal -- in the exposed bedrock are the prime attraction of Craigleith. Most of the fossils date back to 450 million years ago when the waters of Georgian Bay were warm, shallow and full of salt. These small animals are called invertebrate because they do not have backbones. The rich organic soils made for excellent feeding grounds for the small sea creatures. Of intense interest to paleontologists, Craigleith is one of few places in southern Ontario where the 450-million-year-old Blue Mountain shale has been exposed.