Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Hiking Trail - Emily Tract

Stopping in to try out this trail was a last minute decision while returning from Peterborough. To be honest, I wasn't expecting much. I knew the Emily Tract only had 2kms of trail and didn't think it would be anything more than a path winding through the woods, without much of interest.

I was pleasantly surprised. We only had time to do the first kilometer loop but there were a few times where we had "oh cool" moments. First of all, the trail is fairly easy, with no long or steep hills, though the second section is apparently a bit more challenging. There are signs along the way to point out things of interest (also to warn of poison ivy). Basically, the full trail is a rather distorted figure eight. About halfway through the first loop, you can cross a small bridge and do the second loop, then once you get back to the bridge, finish the first and get back to your car.

The coolest part for us was realizing we were walking along the top of an esker, which is basically a long pile of sand and gravel left by melting glaciers. The trail drops off on both sides, fairly steeply. It felt like walking along the crest of a sand dune in the dessert...except it was snowy...and there were cedar trees growing on the slope. Er...well you know what I mean.

This would be a great little day hike for people camping at Emily Provincial Park. To get to the parking area from Emily Park, turn left onto the highway, then take the first left (apparently called Arterial Rd 14?) It's not too far down, on the left. There is room for about 8 cars in the parking area.

Cost: none

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