Hiking to the Beaver Valley Ski Club

DSC_0003

Having had and continuing to experience a very busy fall, I decided last Friday to head back over to the west side of the Beaver Valley and hike a section of the Bruce Trail that we never completed back in June. Lynn didn’t make this time as her back was still bothering her a bit, so a solo trip for me.

Having kind of “fallen’ in love” with this area over the past year or so, Lynn and I have hiked a fair bit on both the west and east sides of the Beaver Valley. My adventure for today was going to take me north from the Bruce Trail parking lot on Concession Road 12A in Grey County and through to the top of the Beaver Valley Ski Club.

Back in June, Lynn and I had hiked portions of the trail south of the parking lot, as well as a significant portion to the north of the ski club.

Today felt like a good time to fill in this missing section.

DSC_0005
Looking east across the Beaver Valley from Concession Road 12A

Actually, my goal was to be at the Epping Lookout located on Grey County Rd. 7, located about 3 or 4 kilometres north of here to catch the sun rising up over the east side of the Beaver Valley. Unfortunately, rain and cloud cover sort of put a “damper” on that plan, but it did make for an earlier start to my day.

Sometimes, one just needs to get out whether it be on a hike or paddling a canoe. Being in nature, out in the bush or on some quiet lake or river someplace simply soothes my soul. It nurtures and heals my mental well-being.

DSC_0006

The start of the trail as it entered from the road. Wet and muddy!

DSC_0009

Given all the rain we’ve had, I was a bit surprised when I came upon a somewhat “dry” stream bed.

DSC_0012

This was an interesting information board that I found early along the trail. I would have assumed like in most areas of southern and central Ontario, that most of the forests we encounter would have been cut at some point in the past, either due to settlement or for logging operations.

Needless to say, I was kind of pleasantly shocked when I read this. Sort of made me feel good that for some reason there is at least one area in south-central Ontario that still retains some old growth forest.

 

DSC_0014

This is a picture of the dominant trees the information is describing. I should have taken my pack off and place it against the trunk to give some idea of the diameter of these mature specimens. Being in here was very impressive while humbling at the same time.

DSC_0015

And of course being the Beaver Valley and the Bruce Trail, there were a number of pretty little streams cascading down the escarpment slopes.

DSC_0017DSC_0018

Not only are there smaller streams flowing down the slopes of the Beaver Valley, on occasion you came across streams and rivers that are much larger. I find that if your quiet when hiking along, you can always hear the water rushing long before you see it.

I always anticipate a surprise………

This time I wasn’t disappointed.

DSC_0023
Zoomed in – a bit blurry!

DSC_0019DSC_0020DSC_0022

Although the pictures don’t capture the terrain very well, I was about 100 metres from the house in the first shot. The waterfall as it cascaded down through the vegetation and rock was actually quite steep.

This is one of the wonderful discoveries that happen every so often that get me excited and eager to get back out there. Lynn and I plan to head back there so she can take proper photos of the waterfall and area in general.

The watercourse actually continued to cascade down through the valley for a fair distance.

DSC_0024DSC_0026

The trail eventually cross the river bed and started to climb upwards to Grey County Road 30 and the trek up the slopes of the Beaver Valley Ski Club.

DSC_0029DSC_0030

After crossing Grey Road 30, the trail weaved its way through some fields and scrub brush to finally this ladder to cross into the Beaver Valley Ski Club grounds.

DSC_0038

The trail continued down one of the ski runs….

DSC_0031

This is looking back up the run……after remembering that if I hike down them….at some point in the near further(say within an hour or so) I would have to hike back up them.

DSC_0032

The trail passed under underneath a chair lift and then started the slow climb up one of the slopes to the top of the ski resort.

DSC_0033DSC_0034DSC_0035

A couple of shots from the top of the ski resort looking east across the Beaver Valley.

DSC_0036DSC_0037

After getting to the top and re-starting my heart(lol), I took a short Clif Bar break before I headed back the same way. As difficult as it is climbing hills, I find the real problem for me is downhills. Steep down hills tend to wreak havoc on my knees and ankles.

Approaching Grey County Road 30 on the return.

DSC_0041

A couple of final pictures of the stream seen before as it flows down through the valley bottom.

DSC_0043

DSC_0045

I covered a distance of between 8 to 9 kilometres in just under over 3.5 hours. The trail was very muddy and slick in most sections due to the early morning rain and fallen leaves. In addition, there were several steep long sections, not including the ski hills that where certainly taxing.

But, overall it was just the type of outing the “doctor” ordered.

Cool temperatures; excellent scenery and a perfect half day spent along the Bruce Trail. It’s always a great feeling to know you’ve been able to refuel your soul if even only for a little bit, with just a day outside soaking up what the outdoors has to offer.

If you’ve never been along the Bruce Trail or certainly hiking it over in the Beaver Valley, take some time in the next couple of weeks to get out there while the leaves are still on the trees. Even if the leaves have fallen by that point, still take a trip out there.

You won’t be disappointed.

Thanks for reading!

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s