Trail Talk 191 October 13th 2021

An American Toad

On Friday October 1st I joined lots of volunteers to help the Nature Conservancy plant about 300 trees on their Ashton Potter property at Maitland Line. The species included Swamp White Oak, Bur Oak, Silver Maple, Red Maple, Eastern Hemlock, Kentucky Coffee Tree and Honey Locust.  The Nature Conservancy has been tree planting there for several years, but I suspect it will be many years before there are any public trails on the property.  The Maitland Trail has been blessed by a great deal of support from the Nature Conservancy who have owned the Morris Tract and Kilgour Tract for a long time and more recently bought the old Goud property that is now the John and Marylo Graham Nature Reserve and the Riverbend property from the Walters family. Without the permission of the Nature Conservancy, the Maitland Valley Conservation Authority, the Huron County Forests and many private landowners, the Maitland trail would be mostly on roads.

The stump that fell over after over 15 years

On Saturday October 2nd a group of hikers came up from Toronto area to hike the Maitland Trail. I joined six of them that chose to hike the 27 km from Sharpes Creek Line to Goderich.  I noticed when hiking recently on the Bruce Peninsula how many hikers were not Caucasian, so I was curious of the ethic mix of the six Toronto Canadians. We were a wonderful mix of Chinese, Japanese, Pilipino, Polish, German-Scottish, and English-Northern Irish background.   We stopped at the Falls for lunch where there was a good flow of water over the falls, and above the falls there was a collection of over 500 gulls.

On the section of the Maitland Trail downstream of River Line I have watched an eight foot high stump for fifteen years wondering how long it would stay upright. Last year it was no longer vertical but sometime between Sept 24th and Oct 3rd it finally fell right over. On that section of trail I also saw six toads three very small ones and three of normal size. They often disappear into the undergrowth to quickly to take a photo of them.

A Maple tree

It does not appear likely that we will have great Fall tree colours this year, but there are still  some trees with nice yellow and orange leaves.


Duck hunting season started on September 25th

Deer Bow Hunting started on October 1st which means the section of the Maitland trail from 7.9 km to 10.5 km is closed until the end of the year.

Wild Turkey season Bow hunting October 1st-31st, Shot gun season October 12th -24th .

The Bayfield Woodlands Trail is closed to the end of October

Saturday October 23rd 9 a.m. Meet at 36833 Londesboro Road and hike through Morris Tract to River Bend and to 10.5 km point and loop back.  Expect to take about 2 ½ hours. Contact Patrick Capper

Sunday October 24th 1:30 p.m. the last of the four bicycle rides. 19.9 km starting at 911#81652 Lucknow Line, includes Little Lakes road. Preregister with Con Melady  519-524-8730.

The Maitland Trail is closed from November 1st to 7th due to gun deer hunting. This does not include the Falls Reserve, GART, Maitland Woods, Millennium or Sifto trails.

Tuesday Trompers hike for about an hour contact Al Sanders at

Uneven  Hikers  hike for 1 ½ to 2 hours on Wednesdays or Thursdays contact Patrick Capper. Both groups meet at 9 a.m.

The Woodlands Nature trail is still probably closed past the bridge due to uncleared storm damage.

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