Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Planting for Pollinators! Sat. July 22 Urquhart Butterfly Garden

Come learn about ways to plant with pollinators in mind at the beautiful Urquhart Butterfly Garden in Dundas Ontario. Free, and you can linger among the garden and explore the historic Desjardins Canal and the exciting developments underway.

Nice bike or walking route to the garden along the Spencer Creek Trail or the Cootes Drive Multi-Use path. HSR transit stop steps away! (hint: you can leave the car at home!)

Friday, July 14, 2017

Crack Willow

The lower Spencer Creek trail is slightly obstructed by a giant fallen branch at the trails Eastern junction with the Cootes drive path.
The branch is from a creekside Willow, which a long time ago someone referred to as "crack willows" due to their propensity to snap. I'd never set up a picnic lunch or a tent under one, having seen this scenario played out many times over the years.
You can still hike through, cyclists will need to dismount and carry through this blockage until it is removed.
Happy trails, and let's be careful out there!

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Season of Trail Closures (paying for climate change)

Heavy rain from storms, in combination with high water levels in Lake Ontario, have made visiting the trails a much-truncated pastime in the city.

Signs posted at entrance to Spring Creek Trail
In the Dundas Valley Conservation area, the Spring Creek Trail is still closed after getting washed out, including footbridges over the creek, in the spring. Other trails in low-lying parts of the valley adjacent to creeks have met similar fates (the new-to-me named Chickadee Way trail, for example, where the bridge over the creek is askew and the trail closed).

Elsewhere, the popular and multi-use paved waterfront trails along Cootes Paradise, Desjardin's Canal, and the Hamilton Bay are closed due to heavy erosion along the shoreline, a double whammy of high water levels on Lake Ontario and damaging storms disrupting the trail for the foreseeable future.

Access stairs to Waterfront Trail closed
Further along, the Wentworth Stairs, a popular fitness climb and pedestrian link between the lower city and "the mountain" is closed for repairs, and not due to open again until November 2017.  (CBC Hamilton article).

(UPDATE: construction schedule changes mean the stairs are open now, but there will be intermittent closures. The construction closure will now occur later in the summer)

There are still plenty of trails to enjoy, but note that if you are planning some hikes, you may be facing some detours along the way.

 If you know other trails in the vicinity that are closed, or if you have any updates, please share in the comments.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Trails washed out

Update after flood conditions due to Thursday's heavy rains, Spring Creek and other trail bridges out of commission.