Sunday, 6 November 2011

Hike #17, November 6, 2011

Hike # 17
Date – November 6, 2011
Location – Map 8, Dundas
Distance – 13.1 km
Total Trail Distance – 163.9 (730.1 to go)
Hikers – Simon, Dean, Marlene, Benjamin, Madeleine, Harold and Janette
Start – 40.4 Iroquoia Club - Scenic Drive
End – 53.5 Davidson Boulevard
Direction – North
Weather – Warm and sunny.
Details – We are back in Southern Ontario, picking up on the next hike in our sequence. We are once again amazed that the trail can pass through such a densely populated area (Hamilton) and yet we spend most of the hike blissfully unaware of the population close by. It is a beautiful refuge only minutes away from thousands of people.

It is also a beautiful, sunny and warm late fall day – perfect hiking weather. In the course of the hike we pass by a couple of attractive waterfalls -- Tiffany Falls and Sherman Falls. Sherman Falls is very near a Bruce Trail parking area, so we find the trail leading up to the falls, and the area around the falls to be very crowded with tourists – a reminder that we are in the heart of an urban area.

Hiking through the Dundas Valley Conservation Area we realize that we recognize the trails. These are the very trails that all of our kids ran their cross-country races on during elementary school days. This is a fun connection that brings back some good (and maybe not so good) memories for us, as coaches, and them, as runners.

Within the Conservation Area we come across the ruins of an old stone mansion, called the Hermitage. This building was constructed in the mid 1800s, and burned down in the early 1900s. It is an impressive building, and together with the location would have made a stunning residence.

As they so often do on our hikes, Ben and Simon take off in the lead. This time the strategy to finish first backfires, as they miss the short side trail turnoff at our parking spot and continue for a few kilometres more along the trail. Neither of them has a cell phone with them, so when we come to the end and don’t find them, we are worried. Since we began our hike fairly late, it’s also starting to get dark. While we stand around deciding on our course of action, they show up. They are smart boys, and realized that they had gone farther than expected, so they just turned around and went back!

After the hike we drive Madeleine to Milton, so she can pick up the GO bus back to Waterloo. We are glad she was able to join us!

Having started on the other side of the 403, and ended in Dundas Valley, the logistics for this hike are more challenging than usual. Travel time through the winding, and very attractive, Dundas roads is long, so by the time we are heading home it is late and dark and we are very tired. We are happy as well, having experienced the joy of a fall hiking on the Bruce Trail.

Guest post by Dean.

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