Trail Talk 274 August 23rd 2023

Now is the time of year when many people suffer with allergies to pollen. In my young days it was known as Hay fever.   Sometimes the golden rod is blamed for the condition but ragweed is far more likely to be the culprit.  There are at least six different varies of golden rod in our area, which include tall goldenrod, Canada goldenrod, early goldenrod, rough-stemmed goldenrod, gray goldenrod , and zigzag/broad-leaved goldenrod.

Common Ragweed
Early Goldenrod

These are often in bloom at the same time as common ragweed and great ragweed.  Great ragweed can grow to well over eight feet tall.

                Recent sights along the trail include my first sight of a giant puffball this year on August 16th.  These are one of the few mushrooms that are unmistakable and safe to eat. I suspect that many people who like them are really fonder of the butter and garlic they use when cooking them.   My previous study of puffballs indicates that they typically double in volume every day.

                Many blackberries are now ripe, though the ones I have found are on the small side. Black raspberries and blackberries look very similar but when you pick a raspberry, the receptacle gets left behind which causes the fruit to have a cup-shaped cavity in the center. However, when you pick a blackberry, the receptacle stays with the fruit leaving a spongy white center in the blackberry.

White Baneberry (Doll’s Eye)

                White baneberries are now easily recognized by their cluster of white berries with a thick red stalk and black eye (“doll’s eyes”). There is also a similar Red baneberry that has red berries on thinner stalks.


Saturday August 26th 10am to 12.30 pm cycle MacGregor Provincial Park with Don Andrew.

Please pre-register with Donald Andrew 519-530-9019 call or text. Ride Details: Meet at Park entrance gate. Ride is beginner level , mostly on off road bike trails.

Saturday August 26th 7-9.30 pm BRVTA Family hike on the Bayfield Woodland Trail. Meet at the David Street entrance.

Sunday August 27th 9am – 2pm Hike the Maitland trail from River Line to Cherrydale road. This hike is to help hikers get in shape for the Camino hikes.  Meet at Cherrydale  road to carpool to River Line. Be sure to bring a lunch. Contact Patrick Capper at to confirm your attendance

Thursday August 31st 1pm to 4 pm Turtle release by ABCA at Morrison dam

Saturday September 16th and Sunday September 17th Maitland Trail El Camino hikes Register through the Maitland Trail website You can sign up to hike the whole 50.3 km in two days or opt for shorter hikes.

                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