|Majestic Jack Pines|
The Orchard Trail was carved out of remnants of an agricultural past and coins the phrase 'hope springs eternal' as you can see even in a short span of two years nature reclaiming the land.
I used to frequent the Tommy Thompson Park quite a bit and one of the things I thought was the most interesting was the way the geography was transformed by growing over piles of rubble. This had created hills and valleys and the excavation of the nearby soil would produce wetlands when it was removed to cover the rubble.
You can see this very phenomenon from the north trail head.
Another interesting bit of information was that I found out that back in the 50's there used to be a hotel on the South trail head (at Twyn Rivers Drive). You can still see pieces of the old concrete dam that was once used to back up the Rouge River for swimming for the guests at the hotel that once stood there. It was apparently a popular vacation spot in its time equipped with a ski hill as well. A search didn't produce any pictures of the hotel itself, though perhaps if I have a little more time I will have closer look.
One of the obvious features of the Orchard Trail
|The Rouge River|
|Site of the remains of the dam and Hotel|
Near the entrance of the Rouge Valley Conservation Centre, where you cross the front of the house to start the Orchard Trail you will see various sign postings that claim some safety tips in case you encounter a coyote, as well as the possibility of spotting white-tailed deer. I saw neither, although my camera was in position and would have loved that, other people on the trail were too noisy to ever make any animal feel like peeking out of its hole.
|Scrap metal from old car|