Trail Talk 205 January 26th 2022

What is this a photo of ?

On January 14th I hiked on the Woodlands Nature trail and noticed a beech tree that was hollow at the bottom with an entry big enough for a raccoon to go inside.  I had passed the tree many times without noticing the entry, but on that day there were what looked like raccoon tracks leading to it. I include a photo taken a very short distance from one of the trails. I will give an explanation next week.

At Naftel’s creek in the afternoon there was a nice little waterfalls with some icicles. The trail was a bit slippery in the parking lot and on the first part of the trail, but generally was not too bad. It is getting to be the time when icers should be worn to prevent slipping, especially on well used trails where the traffic helps ice to form. On Tuesday Jan 18th the steps on the Scott Robson bridge on the Mavis trail were very icy.

We spotted a bald eagle at the top of a spruce tree across the road.  This was the first time we have seen a bald eagle near our property.  While hiking in the Morris Tract I had a good look at a Pileated Woodpecker.  This is the large woodpecker that makes very large rectangular holes looking for ants and beetles. On a Mavis Trail hike I heard and saw a murder of a least 35 crows.

Where is this bench ?
Anne Storey and Lise Ellacott on the Bayfield Woodland Trail Jan 19th

Have you noticed that there are many benches along our trails? Most of our trails have at least one bench – the main exceptions being the Forest Tracts, (though the Sheppardton Tract has one).  For the next Trail Talks, I plan on taking a photo of a bench and reveal its location in the following week’s Trail Talk. Usually I can photograph the view while including a picture of the bench, however I found out this is sometimes a problem for example when the bench is located at the bottom of a bank.  I estimate that there are over 85 benches along the Huron County trails, this excludes the ones on the Bayfield Heritage trail and I count one when there are numerous benches at a location such as at picnic shelters. There is a wonderful variety of designs, from a simple log on a support to a very sturdy elaborate structure. I suspect that some Bayfield area walkers enjoy sitting as much as hiking as there are eleven benches on the Sawmill trail and ten on the Woodland trail.

The photo of the Uneven hikers on the Bayfield Woodland trail is on the part courtesy of the Zavitz family.  Many of our trails would look a lot different without the much welcome support of many such local landowners, and organizations such as The Nature Conservancy, Town of Goderich, Hindmarsh Environmental Trust, Maitland Valley and Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authorities, Sifto Canada,  and Huron County granting permission for hikers to cross their properties.

Notes:

Hike on Saturdays at 11 a.m. on Jan 29th , Feb 5th an 12th  on the Taylor and  Mavis Trails with the BRVTA lead by Ralph Blasting 519-525-3205

Hike Saturday February 19th 9 a.m. on the Hullett Sugar Bush trails. Meet at 80602 Wildlife Line for a hike or Snow shoe depending on conditions. Expect to take between 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Leader Patrick Capper

The Hullett blue trail from the parking lot at 80602 will have some logging activity between January 11th and March 31st. If there is a red flag flying there is no access to the trails from the parking lot at 80602 Wildlife Line. For details phone 519-482-7011

The  Wawanosh Nature Centre trail may be closed due to  logging which started on Jan 4th  Also there is some I logging on the Maitland Trail between 32 and 32.8 km.

The Falls Reserve is closed until the end of May, except for the Maitland Trail’s main trail with white blazes and the blue blazed trail.  This is due to work on installing a new septic system.

While outdoor gathering are now limited to ten people (Until at least January 26th) the Tuesday Tromper’s hikes are on hold.

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

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