5.03.2007

our first spring hike

Yesterday we followed up on my resolve to go hiking more often. I have a tendency to get focused on my to-do list, and not give myself enough down-time. The list is always there; what's the difference if something gets done this week or next week? If we're not working, and it's not raining or too hot, and I don't have a writing deadline, I have to remember: go. Just go. So that's what we did.

We went to Hockley Valley, and had a great hike through woods - still bare - and meadows. Following up on what you guys told us, I see on my map of Ontario that there are dozens of provincial parks and conservation areas straight up Highway 10. I guess saw I this last year, too, but I was more focused on getting to know our own area, exploring the nearby section of the Waterfront Trail, Mississauga, and Toronto. As I mentioned in that earlier post, it's a huge difference in my life to have nature - for lack of a better word - so nearby and accessible.

The dogs had a great day. We were very pleased to see Cody still going strong, walking easily without strain, enjoying the long walk. She has to be almost 10 now, and we watch her carefully for signs of aging, having lost all our dogs before they reached 12. But she's doing great.

Tala was insane the whole way up in the car, the whole hike, and the whole way back. Young dogs are amazing. How can a dog bark at every car on the road for 2 hours, then walk 5 kilometres, then bark at every car on the way back, and then come home and chase birds off the lawn?! She clearly missed the memo directing dogs, on the way back from a hike, to be sacked out, sleeping, all the way home. This must be the famed Husky stamina. Meanwhile, we've added barking-at-cars-on-the-highway to our list of behaviours to work on with her.

As for me, I'm in heaven. Here's my idea of a perfect day. Spend a gorgeous spring afternoon walking in the woods with my sweetie and our pups, come home and grill dinner, hang out sipping wine enjoying the peaceful green of our backyard while the dogs lounge in the grass, then watch a ball game at night, and the Red Sox win.

15 comments:

Scott M. said...

Sounds like a great day. I want to go hiking! This has been a lousy week for Dawn and I with absolutely *no* exercise happening. :(

Where did you park and which loop did you do?

Any pictures?

L-girl said...

We parked in a small lot where we saw a sign for the conservation area, then noticed another sign "follow road to trail". A short walk down the road (Dufferin County Route 7, maybe?), there was a sign for trail access and railroad-tie steps leading up to the trail.

We did a loop that joined East Tom Side Trail with the Bruce Trail. The sign said it was 4.5 kms, and we got a little mixed up once and probably added .5 kms to that.

Next time we're going to try Mono Cliffs Park.

No pictures, because I prefer to not have to deal with a camera when I'm in the woods. I really just like to be in the moment.

Where did you go last weekend?

Scott M. said...

Nowhere last weekend... that's when the exercise drought started.

The weekend before we did the Tom East side trail and continued north to the Glenn Cross side trail, making for a total of just over 11 kms. There is a third loop north of Glenn Cross side trail called the Snell Loop which we would have gone on had we arrived earlier.

The Bruce Trail now has a PDF copy of their 40 great hikes brochure which will be sure to give Dawn and myself a few good ideas for upcoming hikes.

James said...

If you liked that hike, you're in for a treat as you try other paths up and down the Bruce Trail. There are lots of fantastic walks to be had.

Some time when you have a long stretch of free time, you might want to consider renting a cabin up on the Bruce Peninsula and hiking bits of the Bruce up there -- there are some amazing paths. We've got some photos from our trip up on Flickr.

L-girl said...

Some time when you have a long stretch of free time, you might want to consider renting a cabin up on the Bruce Peninsula and hiking bits of the Bruce up there -- there are some amazing paths.

Yes! In fact, I meant to put that in my post. On the way up, I mentioned that I'd like to drive Highway 10 all the way up to Georgian Bay. Allan suggested we do an overnight with the dogs, rent a cabin somewhere. We'll definitely do that for 1 or 2 nights.

L-girl said...

The Bruce Trail now has a PDF copy of their 40 great hikes brochure which will be sure to give Dawn and myself a few good ideas for upcoming hikes.

Thanks for that tip, Scott. I noticed that book is out of print, so a pdf print-out might be the way to go. Or I might pick up this book on trails in the Ontario provincial parks.

Scott M. said...

I know we mentioned it before, but the Bruce Trail Reference Guide is, for certain, the pinnacle of references (and most certainly is in print). It's available at Chapters as well.

Though if I was buying it on-line, I'd personally rather buy it from the Bruce Trail folks themselves so they get more of the profit.

I'll be bring an older version for Redsock and yourself to the game on Wednesday.

L-girl said...

I know we mentioned it before, but the Bruce Trail Reference Guide is, for certain, the pinnacle of references (and most certainly is in print). It's available at Chapters as well.

That's what I was referring to. Chapters says it's out of print, but they can order it from the Bruce Trail people. If I were going to do that, I'd certainly order it directly from the group as well.

I'll be bring an older version for Redsock and yourself to the game on Wednesday.

Thank you very much, but no need. I'll be focused on baseball. :)

L-girl said...

I'll be bring an older version for Redsock and yourself to the game on Wednesday.

Thank you very much, but no need. I'll be focused on baseball. :)


Oh wait a second, maybe "for" us means you are giving us your old copy? That is very kind of you!

I thought you meant to look through at the game. Now I realize that's probably not what you meant. So thank you very much!

Scott M. said...

No prob. See you then!

impudent strumpet said...

She barks at every car? For two hours (that's 14 dog hours)? And doesn't get bored of it??

L-girl said...

She barked at every single car that passed our car. Every. Single. Car. Usually three barks per car. She was also twirling and jumping around in the hatchback. It wasn't good.

We're going to have to work on it. That will almost certainly entail one of us sitting in the back seat with Cody and giving Tala treats through the dog barrier, rewarding her for calm and quiet. We have a session with a trainer later this month (for this and other behaviour issues), we'll see what she comes up with.

For two hours (that's 14 dog hours)?

:-D

dogsled_stacie said...

That IS the perfect day (except for me, substitute hockey with baseball...)! :)

Oh boy, husky energy eh? Just when I'm convinced I've worn my guys out with hours of biking, running, whatever - they often go and prove me wrong an hour later by bouncing off the fences.... *sigh*...

Scott M. said...

Dawn and I did a jaunt on Saturday up near Devil's Glen and the Nottawasaga Bluffs.

The hike around the Bluffs was rather timid (I like big hills with lots of leg work), but visually appealing. We tood a longer path than the 40 great hikes metions, instead heading from the parking lot down the Betty Carter Side trail, across to the main trail then clockwise to freedom rock and the best caves, along the Lookout Side Trail taking the little connector (first right) back to the main trail then North on the Main trail back onto Keyhole Side Trail, continuing West to the grey part of the main trail and heading back to the parking lot that way. That route is a little boring to start but really enjoyable after you get off Betty Carter (that sounds dirty!). If you don't want one as long, go with their trail BACKWARDS so you can save the best for last.

We then went up a bit more to Devil's Glen Provincial Park so I could get some ups and downs in. It has quite the drop, then you go across the river and go back up a ski hill. Here's a description of the area by another traveller. Good times had by all.

L-girl said...

Nice, Scott! Thanks for sharing.

I can see we won't be doing any hikes together... :)