Trail Talk 216 April 27th 2022

The bench in last week’s trail talk was the bench by the Beech Tree in the Maitland Woods . The  plaque states, “Richard ‘Dick’ Lehnen 1944-2008 “In the woods, we return to reason” R.W.Emerson. “

Where is this bench and bridge?

His daughter contributed this tribute to her father.   “Richard “Dick” Lehnen was a community builder. Vibrant ecosystems of fish-filled waters, meadows alive with birdsong, and diverse forests were the foundation of his vision of community. As a boy, Richard played on the banks of the Thames and joined the boy scouts in Mitchell. As a young Bell Telephone linesman in northern Ontario, he became an avid birder. In the 1970s and 1980s, he established campgrounds so that others could find peace in the natural world. Later in life, he donated his time and energy to the Maitland Trail Association. Richard passed on his love of nature to his daughters and grandchildren. He taught the youngsters in his life how to handle a canoe, how to avoid catching fish while spending happy hours, rod in hand, in a homemade boat, and how to make the most of every season.  Perhaps the most important lesson he imparted to his family and friends was that life should be lived fully. Children should climb trees, range freely, and swim in rivers. Richard believed that in nature one could claim one’s freedom.”  Unfortunately I never met him.  This bench is my personal favourite as it was constructed of natural materials thanks to the craftsmanship of Heinz Hoernig,  with the help of Lloyd Aubin and others.  The dedication is very clear and has stood the test of time.

Michele Martin leading the Bayfield Woodlands Nature hike

On Saturday April 16th I joined 8 others on the Bayfield Woodland Trail on a nature walk lead by Michele Martin.  Many hepatica were out and a few bloodroot were starting to show.  The wood was full of wild leeks coming up. Wendy Hoernig talked about a boy who ate a lot of leeks on the way to school, his breath was so bad that he was sent home.  The next day he again ate lots of leeks, but this time the teacher put his desk into the broom closet  rather than letting go home early.

When clearing up some garbage at the Clinton conservation area I found half a $5 bill! HCU 26…66, If you have the other half please let me know as a half note is not worth anything, even if it is half of a $100 bill.

Bloodroot coming up on April 16th

The snow on the Maitland Trail at 30.5km has been interesting. There was a significant 2 ft deep drift on April 12th, no snow on the 17th and then a shorter drift up to 3ft deep on April 20th after the Tuesday’s snowfall.

Common Buckthorn is an invasive tree from Europe that crowds out native species.  The Maitland Trail removed some of the buckthorn from the Maitland Woods on Friday April 8th using a sharp spade which worked as well or better than an “Extractor” and cutting the top off and applying herbicide on the larger ones. This work is planned to continue on Saturday morning April 30th


Saturday April 30th 1.30 p.m. Wildflower Hike on the Lobb trail Level 2 leisurely pace.  Please preregister with Faye Ribey 519 524 2070 or email fribey

Sunday May 1st 8 a.m. Learn the basics of identifying trees and bird calls with Erinn Lawrie. Meet on North Harbour Road, at the
Big Rock. Preregister with Cristen Watt at 226-234-6231 or

Saturday May 7th 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. annual compost sale at the Columbus Hall parking lot. Proceeds to the John Hindmarsh Environmental Trust and the Maitland Trail Association. Plant donations can be dropped off between 9 a.m and 10 a.m. There will also be a guided hike in the Maitland Woods at 1 p.m.

Saturday May 7th 11a.m. to 1 p.m.  BRVTA  wildflower hike at Naftel’s Creek Conservation Area trails
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.

Tuesday Tromper’s  meet at 9 a.m on Tuesdays to hike for about an hour. If you wish to be on this email list, send an email to  All hikers must sign the waiver, preferably the Online waiver at www.maitland

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