Newsletter October 2014

Trail Talk

Norfolk County has an abundance of walking trailsand hiking areas available for public use.

Don’t let the changing seasons and winter stop youfrom getting out and enjoying a walk.

Many of the trails in the County are “seasonal”,which means that they are not maintained during the winter months. These trails include the Waterford Heritage, Delhi Rail and Lynn Valley trails. These trails are still accessible for cross country skiing and snowshoeing. Many other trails will be accessible until there is heavy snow.

Winter is a perfect time to enjoy an urban walk oreven an indoor walk. What a great way to explore your neighborhood or visit a small community and enjoy the quiet streets.

Many indoor walks are available throughout NorfolkCounty. These walks are available at the Port Dover Community Centre Mondays and Wednesdays and the “AUD” in Simcoe, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Indoor walks are also scheduled at the Simcoe Town Centre, Monday to Friday and Waterford District High School Monday to Friday.

Pathways for people and Norfolk CountyCommunity Services provide trail information on all trails through their website and trail maps. For more information on indoor walking, please contact NorfolkCounty Community Services at 519-426-8866 ext.2233.

Submitted by Ingrid Zyma-Irvin

Two Wheeled Tourists

P4P is partnering with Norfolk and Haldimand Counties’ Tourism Departments, the Health Unit, the Long Point World Biosphere, the Long Point Region Conservation Authority and the South West Ontario Tourism Corporation to host a workshop – Two Wheeled Tourists: Cycling and motorcycling as business opportunities.

The workshop is geared to businesses looking to benefit from the ever- growing cycling and motorcycling markets in Haldimand and Norfolk Counties and is planned for November 4, 2014 at the cycling-friendly Waterford Heritage and Agricultural Museum. We are excited to announce that our keynote speakers are Laura Crawford and Russ Roca, The Path Less Pedaled, from Portland, Oregon!

Economic Value of Active Transportation

More and more research is showing the economic spin-off of investments that support Active Transportation. Things like providing connected sidewalks, trails, bike racks and paved shoulders make it easier for people to walk and cycle to the places they want to go. As Norfolk County becomes more and more bicycle and pedestrian friendly, we hope business owners find new ways to tap into this evergrowing market of walking and cycling customers. 

Questions to Municipal Candidates

Norfolk’s Pathways for People committee of volunteers saw an opportunity in the upcoming municipal elections to highlight the importance of active transportation and the County’s active lifestyle resources. This includes the well-developed system of interconnected trails and cycling routes on roadways as outlined in the Norfolk County map. A committee of volunteers was formed to develop a strategy.

It was decided to develop two questions to be posed to candidates for both the position of Mayor and Councillor positions in each ward. The two questions focusing on issues in the County related to Active Transportation are:

  1. How will you support and promote Active Transportation and active lifestyle opportunities in Norfolk County to attract new residents, businesses and industries?
  2. What job opportunities do you see in Norfolk County specific to Active Transportation, Active lifestyles and Eco-tourism?

Questions are being presented in full or in part at All Candidates meetings across the County. To date meetings have been held in Ward 1 – on Sept. 18th hosted by the Long Point Country Chamber of Commerce at the St. Williams community Center. An All Candidates meeting for Ward 6 was also held in Port Dover at the Lighthouse Festival Theatre and hosted by the Port Dover Board of Trade on Sept. 25. This gathering of about 300 heard various candidates speak in support of connected pathways, trails, sidewalks and roadways to promote healthy lifestyles, recreation and active transportation in the County.

A future All Candidates meeting is to be held for Simcoe Candidates in Ward 5 at the Greens at Renton hosted by the Simcoe Chamber of Commerce on Oct. 17th. Remember that October 27th is municipal elections day in Ontario. Advanced polls are also available for voters to exercise their voting rights.

Submitted by Dave Cameron

Norfolk’s Amazing Places!

The Long Point World Biosphere Reserve recently asked Norfolk County residents to vote for their favourite Amazing Place. Criteria for nominees included:

  • Be publicly accessible by hiking, cycling paddling or any other vehicle, in or adjacent to the Long Point Biosphere Reserve – or anywhere in Norfolk County.
  • Tell an Amazing story through its physical, biological or historical features.
  • Be located somewhere that can receive increased visitation without negatively impacting or compromising what makes this place so Amazing!

And the winners are…

  • Whistling Gardens
  • Deer Creek Conservation Area
  • Long Point Eco-Adventures
  • Bonnieheath Estate Lavender and Winery
  • Sand Hill Park
  • Backus Heritage Conservation Area
  • Black Bridge – Waterford Heritage Trail
  • Long Point Bird Observatory
  • Long Point Provincial Park Beach
  • Lynn Valley Trail

Waterford Heritage Trail Association

Being quite familiar with the Waterford Heritage Trail and the Shadow Lake Trail, there are many sections I enjoy but am partial to the views from the Black Bridge. From up there one can see from sunrise to sunset. Another favourite is the Shadow Lake Trail into Waterford. Here seven caretakers have taken over custodial duties along the shore of Shadow Lake complete with shoreline accesses offer differing new vistas. Two newly installed docks also offer fresh views. Recently I was invited by a friend for an evening kayak on the Waterford Ponds and I have to tell you the perspective from the water was something I hadn’t anticipated. We put in at the causeway and had Shadow Lake to ourselves. Knowing full well there was a paved trail on shore, it was hidden from sight and it was as though we were on a new trail, a water trail and our perspective was of an entirely new territory. The water was calm, quiet except for our paddling, the evening balmy. Seeing the Lake from this vantage point was revealing. Two women were seated on a memorial bench enjoying the evening while fishermen patiently waited for a bite. Two kayakers paddled in the distance – although not wanting to eavesdrop the air was so still we could hear their conversation. Some geese flew over and reeds moved from something travelling underneath.

As we returned, emerging from under the mini Black Bridge we approached two ladies on stand up paddleboards and beyond them three balanced teenagers. An older couple cautiously kneeled on their paddleboard, attempting the act for the first time. As we approached the gentleman rose up and stood smiling. Everyone was in a good mood and quips were passed amongst us. Back on Shadow Lake we passed nearly fifty people, some even attempting to practice yoga while on their boards while others gently glided through the lake in their kayaks.

Where did all these people come from? Thursday evenings during the summer Jonah Logan offered paddle nights for the community and the people came. Word spread and soon he was so busy he started booking boards for the following Thursday.

What a perfect fit, beautiful evening, lake, paddleboards and an interested and active community.

If you have a canoe or kayak or even a paddleboard, come and enjoy what Shadow Lake has to offer – over and above the paved trail. If it is too late in the season for you, wait till next spring but be sure to book ahead – the news is spreading.

Submitted by Frank Woodcock

Norfolk Pathways for People Members

  • 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

The Lynn Valley Trail Association

Nature’s abundant beauty is ever present on the Lynn Valley Trail

In May of this year, many trail enthusiasts showed their devotion to the historic rail trail by placing their votes on the Top Ten Amazing places in Norfolk County website. The outcome was wonderful.

The Amazing Places initiative is a mapping project that was launched by the Fundy Biosphere Reserve in 2010. There are now 50 Amazing Places mapped for their natural or cultural significance, and each location is profiled on Google maps, with a page of interpretive information. Achieving this status was a boost of confidence to the folks who have been diligently mapping out the future of the Lynn Valley Trail.

As the fall season creeps in, all the plans that were made for the trail upgrades have been completed, including installation of new gates and beautifully designed, informative signs, placed at the entry points. There is armour stone in place at Ireland Rd and Lynn Valley Rd to prevent motorized vehicle distributions. As well, stop signs have been installed at Blueline Road and St. John’s Road to ensure the safety of all trail users. Safety fencing has been erected on both sides of the trail near the Rotary Bridge due to the steep edges. The addition of gates, benches, picnic tables, a portable washroom, fencing and signage have made the trail a comfortable and safe area for walking, hiking, cycling or nature study.

The Lynn Valley Trail plays a significant role in our community as place of distinction. In addition to the trail’s impressive rail history, hockey fans might be interested to know that Canadian hockey legend Red Kelly, most likely learned how to skate on the ponds that connect to the Lynn River along the trail. It is on these open-air ponds near the tracks that he began to develop his superb stick-handling skills. Just one more reason this magnificent place deserves its place on the map.

The Lynn Valley Trail Association is hosting its Annual General Meeting on November 20th at 7pm at the Simcoe Library. This year’s guest speaker, Andrea Killian, will discuss the focus of Norfolk County’s Top Ten Places and describe her work as the sustainable tourism manager for the Long Point Biosphere. Light refreshments will be served and everyone is welcome to attend.

Submitted by Kerstein Mallon

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

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