Guest blog by Jenna Ujiye.
A couple of weeks ago I decided to explore the hiking trails in Huron County. There are 29 public trails, so I made a plan to hike sections of three of them. I started off at the Sifto monument at the top of the hill across from the Huron Historic Gaol. This lookout area has a really great view of the Menesetung bridge, the Sifto Salt mine, the Maitland River and Lake Huron.
So you may be wondering why I mentioned a Tiger in the title of this blog. Well, Tiger is actually a person! William “Tiger” Dunlop was a physician, author, woodsman, soldier, politician and raconteur and one of the founders of Goderich. I hadn’t hiked the Dunlop trail in years so my next stop was the Tiger Dunlop Trail. This trail is 3.2 kilometers and is great for biking, walking, running, and cross country skiing in the winter. It ends at the Tiger Dunlop Tomb, where there are plaques explaining the history of the man.
This trail meets up with the Goderich to Auburn Rail Trail and the Maitland Trail. Seeing as I wanted to finish the trails in a couple of days I decided to drive to a parking area along the 48 km Maitland Trail. I hiked about 6 kilometeres along the Maitland River and took in some great views. I even caught a beaver working on his dam, watched two eagles dancing and witnessed a blue heron! I will say I was surprised at the damage that still existed from the 2011 tornado in the area. I know that nature (and the amazing trail volunteers) will take over soon though!
My next stop was over to a loop of the main part of the Maitland Trail to check out the Balls Bridge. This bridge is really amazing and it’s story is even better. They say that it is the “bridge that love built,” the original builder built it so his wife didn’t have to get her feet wet walking through the river on her way to the market back in 1885. This bridge is also one of the older bridges in Ontario and the design is very rare with less than a dozen left in existence. To find out more about the Balls Bridge visit http://ballsbridgeontario.com The pictures tell it all!
I ended at the Goderich boardwalk. It’s a 1.5km trek along the three beaches in Goderich. My friend Cindy says it’s the best, because there are ice cream shops at both ends. While I was walking I probably passed 100 people enjoying the sun and getting a bit of exercise. I actually watched a couple of kids swimming at The Cove beach, but it was still pretty cold. I can’t wait for the water to be warm enough for me, this beach has the best waves and sand around!
To find out more about these wonderful trails visit www.hikehuron.com
Jenna lives for cooking, extreme fun, adventures and a good time. Travel is another great passion of Jenna’s, she uses her knowledge of the Huron County and local connections to find unique and fun things to do in the area! Jenna loves to find out new facts about the area and has always had a passion for local history, heritage, arts and culture.
Ujiye spends the rest of her spare time preforming with a band, acting at the community theatre, four wheeling and writing for the Ontario Travel Divas. She moved to Huron County from Kamloops British Columbia with her mom, dad and sister Erin when she was 5. Jenna has been writing for newspapers, journals and online for almost 8 years.