You sure can! Early snow in Ontario has all of us thinking about winter hiking. There are a few things to think about before you head outside. The better prepared you are the more you will enjoy it.
Layer up. Big thick winter coats are great for strolling around but if you are headed for the trail several thinner layers are better. You will need to bring a backpack to hold a layer or two once you get going. If you are a little cool in the parking lot before you set out, you should be fine.
Nutrition. You will still need water when hiking in colder conditions. You may not feel as thirsty as you did hiking in summer but you will be sweating and burning calories. Always take water or even a warm drink. If you are out for long, water and snacks can freeze. Water bladders will need tube covers or take a water bottle. Keep snacks and extra water wrapped in your backpack to limit freezing.
Winter Gear. Extra mitts and hats are great to pack. Hiking poles are helpful on any surface. Gaiters are pieces of waterproof material that wrap around your calves. They keep snow from getting into your boots as well as provide an extra layer of warmth. Icers that can be stretched over your boots for icy sections and then removed for deeper snow provide added safety.
You may take a little longer to hike the same distance you did in warmer weather so plan extra time. With leaves off the trees you will be able to see different sights, as you are surrounded by a blanket of peace and sparkling snow in the woods. With a bit of planning you may find winter hiking to be your favourite.