Norfolk County has an abundance of beautiful natural, urban and rail trails. Most popular are the family of rail trails: Waterford Heritage, the Lynn Valley, the Delhi Rail and the Norfolk Sunrise. Every year we see the creation of more trails, many of which are available through the generosity of the following organizations: The Nature Conservancy of Ontario has been working to acquire new lands and create new trails. Many trails in the Southern Sand Plains area have been created and now have very clear signage and parking areas.
Turkey Point Mountain Bike Club has been building more single track trails around Turkey Point with the co-operation of the MNR, LPRCA and Norfolk County. All trails are clearly marked and available for hiking and biking.
Long Point Region Conservation Authority has many beautiful natural areas that offer an abundance of trails of varied terrain.
ALUS Norfolk is a community-developed, farmer-delivered program that provides support for farmers and ranchers to enhance and maintain nature’s benefits. Many farmers make their lands available for organized hikes.
ACORUS is a privately owned native plant nursery that boasts water gardens and trails. Some of these trails pass through restored wetlands, Carolinian woodland and tall grass prairie.
There are also trails available on private lands including the Long Point Eco-Adventures and Burning Kiln Winery.
Experience a bit of Norfolk County with the Discover Norfolk walks, Thursday evenings May to October. So many wonderful walking and riding opportunities are available to you in Norfolk County, any time of the year!
Submitted by: Ingrid Zyma-Irvin
Update on Trails Master Plan
Hello trail enthusiasts! I hope everyone is having a good winter.
Since the Trails Master Plan was adopted by Council in 2009, a lot of progress has been made with respect to the plan’s wish list. The link between the Lynn Valley Trail and the Waterford Heritage Trail was completed with the help of the Rotary Club of Norfolk Sunrise and funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation. The new section, called the Norfolk Sunrise Trail, passes through the urban section of Simcoe and is enjoyed by many trail users as they travel between Port Dover and Waterford.
In 2010, the RINC stimulus funding supported two major projects. The 10 km missing link between Waterford [which features the spectacular Black Bridge] and Brant County was constructed, now connecting Norfolk County to the Trans Canada Trail; and the 13 km Delhi Rail Trail to Delhi from Simcoe.
A possible future link with our neighbours to the west in Elgin County is also in the discussion stages which would then continue the connection to the Trans Canada Trail. Other trail user groups who wish to develop trail systems in Norfolk have come forward in recent months. We look forward to working with the Norfolk Equestrian Trail Riders Association (NETRA) and the Norfolk County ATV Club in developing trails for their particular uses.
I look forward to bringing you up to speed on other successful Trails Master Plan goals as time goes on. Happy trails!
Submitted by Mark Boerkamp, Trails Development/ Business Marketing Coordinator
P4P is on Facebook!
We now have a Facebook page and to date we have 108 “LIKES”. We are using this page to promote our own local trail events and this newsletter. We can keep you up to date on various county and provincial initiatives that support Active Transportation. And if you have photos of your favourite trails, we can share those too! So be sure to “LIKE” our page if you haven’t already and encourage your friends to do the same. Norfolk Pathways for People
Transportation Master Plan
In 2014, Norfolk County’s Public Works and Environmental Services Department will be developing a Transportation Master Plan for the entire County. The plan will set priorities for future road allowance infrastructure construction.
Part of the plan will also address Active Transportation [AT], looking at the safe integration of the infrastructure needs for all transportation modes, including walking and cycling. A number of County departments, including Community Services, Planning and Economic Development and the Health Unit will be collaborating on this initiative. We will be seeking input from stakeholders and the general public in this process. Stay tuned for updates and opportunities to have your say.
Submitted by Michele Crowley
Turkey Point Mountain Bike Club is Growing…and People Like Us!
Our Club is entering its 4th year of official operation and continues to grow with 130 members. Our trail network has grown too, through cooperation with landowners and different levels of Government.
General acceptance by the community at large has also improved. Initially, concerned citizens were worried that a cycling trail network on Crown lands would wreak havoc and environmental disaster in the forests. That simply has not happened and that perception is fast disappearing. We have had mostly positive feedback and praise for the trail network.
In the past year, three different trail groups from across Ontario have contacted TPMBC for information on our trails. They admire our network and want insight on how we have successfully worked with various landowners and Government agencies. Local hospitality businesses and tourist centres are requesting our new trail map brochures because their clients want them. Other landowners have contacted TPMBC expressing interest in obtaining agreements to create trails on their properties.
Our continued success can also be attributed to our practice of following the eight tenements of trail building and sustainability:
- Trail building philosophy – Building public support for outdoor recreation is vital to ensuring the future of open space. If people visit and enjoy the outdoors, they’ll support preservation of natural and undeveloped land. The challenge is to encourage more people to explore the outdoors without trampling it underfoot and spoiling its natural beauty!
- Work with land managers in good faith – clearly indicate your trail plans and secure agreements; work with land managers to find acceptable solutions and keep an open dialogue with landowners and managers.
- Trail projects should be managed, built and maintained by cycling volunteers. Trails should be monitored and maintained by users.
- Trails, where possible, should accommodate multi-purpose users that are low impact such as hikers, joggers, birders and naturalists. Some trails should be specific single track for mountain biking only. (low density keeps our trails two way)
- Trails are constructed using best environmental practices. Care must be taken to prevent erosion and keep human impact and footprint to a minimum. (We have an 18” tread and a 4’x 8’ corridor for safety reasons).
- Trail rating and accurate mapping and signage leads to a well used and successful trail system.&
- All cyclists must wear helmets and follow trail rules (such as stay off closed trails etc).
- All users follow the Golden Trail Rules – Respect the trail, wildlife and the environment. Stay on the trail – Leave no trace and take nothing but photos and memories!
What’s New in Waterford?!
Bears, squirrels and raccoons are lucky to be hibernating this winter but the Waterford Heritage Trail and the Rail Land Redevelopment groups work right through polar vortexes.
On a cold day you may find us warm and cozy at the St. James St. Eatery, where Kerry serves specialty teas, aromatic coffee and pastries. Kerry embraces the trail community and we promote her business in a community partnership.
Our winter meetings involve planning for the upcoming trail season. Currently, we are completing applications to the Ontario Trillium Foundation, CP, CN, US Steel, Esso and TD. As you can imagine, filling out these forms is not something volunteers line up to do. There have been cases of people feigning illness or hiding behind chairs to avoid the job. What keeps us on task, form after form, is the mental image of a second mini Black Bridge completing a trail loop to the Waterford Ponds.
Then there are the fishing piers we’ll construct for anglers big and small and the boat launches for a fleet of kayaks, canoes and fishing craft. We plan on paving our trails within Waterford and extending the trail west to Highway 24 and east to Thompson Road. And picture this – a covered bridge, hopefully red, in the shadow of the Old Hwy 24 bridge downtown, joining our proposed trail system with the play park, the deer park and a suggested dog park on the opposite bank.
Not to stop there, how about planting more native trees as well as introducing prairie grasses such that come autumn there will be a grand viewing from the deck of our Black Bridge – a fall fireworks of colour amidst the sea-like waves of grasses far below.
Are we dreaming? No, it is possible. Plan it and it will happen and that is why it is back to the forms, filing our forms, refining our presentations, building upon our accomplishments and encouraging more community partnerships like the one we have with the St. James Street Eatery.
It is cold outside, there are some snow tracks along the trail but we are not hibernating. It is time to get back to work. Pass the next form, please.
Submitted by Frank Woodcock
Tactile Walking Surface Indicators
Norfolk County has recently begun installing Tactile Walking Surface Indicators at curb cuts throughout the County. These indicators alert pedestrians with low vision to the presence of hazards in the line of travel. The tactile indicators on the ground surface enable a pedestrian to feel textural changes through their feet or with a cane. The colour contrast between the tactile indicators and the ground surface are used to detect the modules visually.
Tactile Walking Surface Indicators have been installed on:
- St. George Street – Port Dover
- St. James Street – Waterford
- Intersection at HWY 3 and HWY 24 – Simcoe
- More to come soon!
Tactile Walking Surface Indicators are mandated by the Province through the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation (Ont. Reg. 191/11).
For more information please contact Norfolk County’s AODA Compliance Supervisor at 519.426.5870 Ext 1268 or Shelby.Wilson@norfolkcounty.ca
Submitted by Shelby Wilson
Norfolk Pathways for People Members • www.norfolkpathways.ca
- Joyce Flexman, Chairperson
- Gord Mason, Trail Advisory Committee
- Al Ladd, Community member
- Anne Wynia, Community member
- Rob Luke, Turkey Point Mountain Bike Club
- Dave Challen, Lynn Valley Trail Association
- Ingrid Zyma-Irvin, Norfolk County Community Services Dept.
- Janice Robertson, Long Point Region Conservation Area
- Bruce Robinson, Community member
- Frank Woodcock, Waterford Heritage Trail
- Michele Crowley, Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit
- Dave Cameron, Community Member
- Steve and Carolle Irwin, Community members
- Bob Williams, Community member
Interested in becoming a member of Pathways for People? Contact Michele at 519-426-6170 Ext. 3239.
The Lynn Valley Trail Association: President’s Message
As spring approaches, the Lynn Valley Trail Executive and Directors are planning a variety of 2014 projects to improve the trail.
The Port Dover end of the trail from the fountain at Silver Lake to Prospect Street will be resurfaced with limestone screenings and widened in certain areas to improve traffic flow. Some additional plantings of shrubs and small bushes are expected to be completed as part of this project. The Port Dover Lions and the Lynn Valley Trail Association will work together to upgrade this portion of the trail.
The nine existing gates will be removed and replaced with standardized 14 foot tubular steel assemblies. The passage opening will be set at 39” to allow wheelchairs, scooters and bicycle child trailers to pass through easily. Several entrance points will be upgraded by widening and leveling the area with limestone screenings.
Sign upgrades are being reviewed with thoughts to providing some historical data on the railways that passed along this trail in the 1800’s and well into the 20th century. Other sign improvements will also be considered – kilometer markers, road intersection warnings and improved location identification at intersections.
We hope you will enjoy these trail improvements.
Submitted by Paul Beischlag, President
Lynnvalleytrail.ca … We are Getting a New Website!
Check us out – On Monday February 24, we’ll launch our new website, making it easier to find maps, events and to keep track of what’s happening on the trail. We plan to add a webpage to allow secure signups and payments for online memberships and donations.
Bike Safety Event – Protect Your Noggin – Saturday June 7 – Mark Your Calendar
Bachmann Personal Injury Law and the Lynn Valley Trail Association are figuring out the details – but – mark your calendar for a fun time as we encourage bikers of all ages to wear their helmets.
We need your email!
If you are receiving this through the mail – and you have computer access – we’d very much appreciate it if you could email Peter Munzar: email@example.com so we can add your email to the list. It saves paper, the environment and ensures that your membership fee and donations go directly to the trail.
Life Membership – Gord Pennington
2014 LVTA Board of Directors
- President, Paul Beischlag – 519-583-9386
- Treasurer, Peter Munzar – 519-583-1101
- Secretary, Mike Davis – 519-429-3323
- Corina Bachmann – 519-426-0160
- Barb Boyko – 519-583-3971
- Stacy Bradshaw – 289-242-9757
- Dave Challen – 519-583-1090
- Scott Fletcher – 519-426-6218
- Dan Robinson – 519-428-2487
- Diane Luke – 519-428-1385
- Kerstein Mallon – 519-909-8993
- Charlie Upshall – 519-583-9544
- Phil Ross – 519-583-9935