Trail Talk 142 October 26th 2020

Hullett Hike with Sheron and john Stadelmann, Rick Poisson and Susan Ethelston

Five of us enjoyed the hike at Hullett on Sunday October 18th, there was the occasional drizzle but not enough to get us more than a little damp. On my Monday hike at Lobb’s  I saw a raccoon which paused while climbing a tree to look at me before proceeding to the top of the tree. I had not seen a live raccoon for several months.

Racoon up a tree at Lobb’s

Sixteen Tuesday Trompers enjoyed the Fall colours at Point Farms. ( See featured photo). We hiked the Old Farms trails which were well maintained and only had a very occasional puddle. The South trail is often very wet at this time of year.

Six of us hiked the Exeter trails on Wednesday, and despite earlier forecasts we did not have any rain. We saw one of the famous Exeter white squirrels.

My experience with cycling on the G2G has been good with the new surface and on Saturday saw 27 other cyclists and 7 walkers.  In future I will print out a map of the detours as I found I sometimes got a bit lost trying to find where the G2G trail continued.  Of course , being a male, I didn’t stop to ask for help!

I see small flocks of geese on their training flights, -getting ready for migrating South.  I am still waiting for the opportunity to photograph a perfect V formation. The only time I have so far seen a well formed V,  it has been too late for a photograph.

Autumn leaves

I collected some autumn tree leaves and in doing so, noticed how rare it is to find a perfect leaf with no blemishes.  It is much harder to identify the tree species after all the leaves have fallen off, unless you are an expert at viewing twig buds and leaf scars.

Diana Beresford Kroeger’s  book , “To Speak for the Trees”, made me realize that a lot of medicines come from trees.  I had assumed that most herbal based medicines came from flowers and herbs, but many trees contain chemicals that are used in modern medicine. Diana has a background in Irish folk wisdom which coupled with her degree in botany and biochemistry could let her explain how many traditional medicines work.

One example is that Salicylic acid is made by crushing mature aspen leaves which is a good way to relieve bee stings.  Aspens are also a source of survival food, by eating the green cambial layer just under the bark.

Birches are well known for the use of their bark for canoes.  The tea made by adding their leaves to boiling water is a good treatment for urinary tract infections, as aspens are a source of xylitol, which also helps to prevent tooth decay. Xylitol is used in some chewing gums.

The Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority   “Get Outdoors Bingo” contest ends on October 29th. I have managed to complete five lines although only one is necessary to enter the draw for prizes.

Notes:  Hikers are expected to be socially distant from others.

Turkey Hunting season closes on October -31st  for bow hunting.

The Bayfield Woodland trail will be closed to Oct 31st and Nov 2nd-8th.

Deer gun hunting is from Monday November 2nd to Sunday November 8th when the Maitland Trail and Lobb trail among others will be closed. The GART, G2G, Maitland Woods, Millennium, and most of the other local trails will remain open.

Tuesday November 17th  2 p.m.  Join the Bayfield Trail Association for “Take a Hike Day” on the Taylor and Mavis Trails. Meet at the Stanley Complex near Varna.  Leaders: Gary Mayell 519-441-0141, Wayne Nielsen

Tuesday Trompers meet at 9 a.m. every week at different trails for a one hour hike.

Uneven day hikers meet at 8:30a.m. for 1 ½ to 2 hour hike on Wednesday or Thursday whichever has an odd date, e.g Thursday October 29th   Contact pcapper.

If you have questions or something of interest for Trail Talk email me Patrick Capper at pcapper99@gmail.com.