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Trail Talk 296 - January 24, 2024

What a difference a few days make, whether it is a change in temperature or the number of birds at the feeder.  I mention that on the Hullett hike on January 7th there were no sign of deer tracks, but on the following Tuesday there were deer tracks all over the place, both on and crossing the trails in many places.

The cold weather and snow on the January 13-14th weekend brought many birds to our feeders with typically about 20 goldfinches, 10 juncos as well as a downy woodpecker, 2 house finches, 8 mourning doves 2 chickadees, 1 cardinal and 1 blue jay.

            In the Maitland Woods there were a few more windfalls one of which damaged the handrail on the bridge near Huckins Street.

            Although Goderich did not have a lot of snow, further inland there was more snow and some significant drifts such as the one just east of the field at 47-48km.  Despite the cold weather and high winds some beech trees still held on to their leaves.

            The Alzeimer society reported that studies show that physical inactivity can increase your risk of dementia by 40 percent. Staying active plays a crucial role in keeping your mind sharp and reducing your risk of dementia later in life.  I have managed to still get out in the cold snap, my only problem being cold fingers which I need to warm with hand warmers. However, people with high blood pressure need to use caution when exercising out doors as blood pressure increases in cold weather.


            Reminder that the Lobb Trails are now closed to the public

            Saturday January 27th 1.30pm Hike or ski depending on conditions at the John Goldie Reserve Expect to take about 1 ½ hours at a moderate pace.  For more information and details about location and carpooling and pre-registration contact Con Melady at 519-524-8730.


            Sunday January 28th 1.30 pm Another chance to ski or hike the John Goldie Reserve with Con Melady see details above.

            Friday February 2nd 7.30-8.30pm The annual Candlelit walk in the Maitland Woods. Hike at your own pace, trail closes at 9pm. If you have any candle lanterns or wish to help put the candles out please contact Con Melady at 519-524-8730

            Sunday February 4th at 10 a.m.  Hike the Falls Reserve.  Contact sally.brodie@ This is a Level 2-3, moderate pace, 2 hours.

 All participants taking part in the Maitland Trail events should sign the waiver for 2024, preferably the online version.

            Tuesday Trompers meet at 9 a.m. on Tuesday to hike for about an hour. If you wish to be on this email list, send an email to


            Uneven Hikers hike for 1 ½ to 2 hours on Wednesdays or Thursdays, contact Patrick Capper.

Both groups meet at 9 a.m. and are open to non-members provided they sign the MTA On-line waiver.

If you have questions or something of interest for Trail Talk email me Patrick Capper at



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