Heber Downs Conservation Area

Further exploration of Parks and Trails in Ontario brought us to the Heber Downs Conservation Area located in Whitby, Ontario.  It offers a myriad of recreational activities such as camping and hiking.  Lynde Creek runs through the wetlands, and is a cold water stream which supports a variety of fish including brook trout, mottled sculpin and redside dace (which is currently at risk).

Good land and water practices will ensure the survival of this endangered species in Lynde creek.  Recently volunteered for community clean up and some planted trees in the area.  We were told that the cause of the risk is from pollution (siltation - sediments in the water), urbanization and the disappearance of vegetation.  Apparently we can all help in the effort by reducing storm water runoff by placing rain barrels under our downspouts and planting trees and shrubs that are native to the area.  

Other ways to help clean up the downstream water is to practice De-icing instead of salt.  Protection of the stream banks is important and of course we all know to avoid the use of pesticides.  

What is left to see can be enjoyed all year long, as they are apparently quite busy when the snow falls, for the cross country skiers as well.  Some pictures that were taken later in the day.   

A great place to take the kids, or to camp overnight, Heber Down is about 5 kms of flat and at times slight sloped hills that offer many scenic views of this natural valley.

Taylor Creek Park

Unmistakable beauty in the Spring time.  Especially after being cooped up over the winter, it's like everything is seen for the first time.  You oil your bike chain, tighten the bike bolts and pump the air in your bike tires and before long you're riding the familiar trails and it's as if winter never happened.  For those glorious daytime hours you feel like young and carefree.  Yes, nothing beats the first real taste of spring.

Progreston Falls in the Winter!

Progreston Falls is located in a small community in Flamborough, Hamilton.  It lies at the intersection of Carlisle Road and Centre Road, about 15 km north of Waterdown.

I've come down this way to take this shot here in the Summer, Fall and Winter.  It's a nice location though the waterfall isn't natural, it was artificially created as a dam but the water circles and flows so beautifully it's a photographers dream.  It's one of my faves in the Hamilton area.  

Carlisle is a quaint small town that almost seems like a ghost town to me, and the bleakness of the snow covered land doesn't help either!  Carlisle apparently once was home to an ostrich farm (very unusual), but the animals were deemed too dangerous.  Since they're native to Africa, I can't imagine an ostrich in this environment. More appropriately, Carlisle was home to the Bluegrass Festival, but apparently the owner of the trailer park here didn't pay his property taxes so the land was bought up by the Town of Flamborough, and hence no more bluegrass.  

If you think these pictures are bleak, and bland you're not alone, but my camera was sick today, and thus I decided to post the pictures despite it all.

If you're ever in the area here, take a trip down Carlisle Road, and check out these falls for yourself.

Websters Falls, Hamilton

Websters Falls is a very picturesque waterfall and one of many found on the Niagara Escarpment.  It's located in the Spencer Gorge Conservation area.  Webster's Falls is within the same Conservation area as Tews Falls.  Beamer and Balls Falls are located about 30 minutes to the east of Websters.

The height of the falls are 22 metres high and 24 metres across.  It is classified as a 'curtain' waterfall and is considered one of the most beautiful and reliable falls in the Escarpment.  This is because so many of them may be unpredictable during the drier seasons unless there is a heavy rain fall so it is definitely worth a stop over if you are on your way to Niagara Falls.  

Situated in the middle of a small park, the Bruce Trail can take you deep into the gorge by using the stairs that cascade downward making the base of the falls full accessible.  The surrounding park is big enough for outdoor sport games, or bird watching or if you want to have a picnic in the warmer months.