As promised, here is a picture of Dean and Barb:
I’m sure the superlatives I have used in describing the people I’m meeting are wearing thin from overuse. But I continue to be amazed at the good these people are doing in the world. One thing that Dean and Barb have been involved with extensively in recent years is a small group that finds foster care for children, working in conjunction with the government. This involves a great deal of ongoing interaction with the children and the foster parents. It takes much love to do work like this.
Today I had another traveling companion. Here is the hand-off picture in Dean and Barb’s driveway:
From the right: Dean, Barb, Wilma and Ed. Wilma and Ed are Dutch; the connection to me is that their daughter Kim roomed with Starr, the wife of my son Matthew, to whose house I’m heading. Wilma dropped off Ed and took my bin and stroller in her car, leaving me with just my backpack and a few small items for the day. Sometime ago Ed had suggested walking with me for a day, so we made good on this plan today. We had a good time getting to know each other throughout the day.
One of the several careers that Ed has had, his latest, is his heavy involvement in the Ontario Christian Gleaners, a non-profit company that collects vegetables that are about to be discarded by farms or large grocery chains, but which are still perfectly edible. They then chop them up, dehydrate them, and package them for organizations that give out food to the needy. This is a free service and the operation is supported entirely by donations.
Ed was a fine companion as he is very fit, having hiked the entire Bruce Traile, cycled across the entire USA, and cycled a large part of Japan. He is soon leaving for another major cycling trip in Argentina and Chile.
We got going today by making our way out to Highway 81 (or 8 as it used to be called) and heading west, parallel to the lake edge but still some distance from it. Always on our left were views of the Niagara Escarpment:
and on our right was the lake, with the QEW between us and the lake.
I continue to be surprised how much color there still is in this region:
Here’s a view along the sidewalk we were traversing:
Eventually we turned north to cross to cross the QEW:
You can make out a little piece of the QEW in the center of the picture and a little view of the lake to the right. Here’s the QEW as we passed overhead; I’ve driven this road many, many times:
The strip between the QEW and the lake is fairly narrow, but wide enough to support housing and at one point, this cluster of eight significant antennas:
The housing is mostly town houses; here are some finished ones and some under construction:
At one point we passed actual construction of concrete foundations, using a conveyor belt system that I hadn’t seen before, being fed by two trucks simultaneously:
What we were looking for was the Waterfront Trail, so we were encouraged to see:
Unfortunately, there were times that the QEW came so close to the lake that the only walking option was a road that parallels the QEW for much of its length, the North Service Road. This was very noisy, though this section was a little better:
but not this section:
Occasionally we got tantalizing peeks of the lake to our right:
Ed was a great guide as he knew this area pretty well. This little section used to be wetlands; the developers managed to get permission to build here by letting the lake in a bit and making a place where homeowners could dock; this made the houses considerably more expensive!
Here’s my doughty, Dutch crony, right at the edge of the lake:
Looking to the left, we would like to have walked along the lake here but it was deemed private property by these residences and gated off:
so it was out to the North Service Road again:
Eventually, however, we managed to find the entrance to Confederation Park:
This stretch along the lake apparently used to be in a terrible, run-down state. It turns out that Ed, in an earlier career was part of the crew that was responsible for restoring the park to its current beautiful state:
There were places to walk right to the shore of the lake:
and opportunities to sit and contemplate:
Here is a tantalizing documentary picture showing a good part of tomorrow’s walk. You can see the Burlington Skyway near the center of the picture and the lift bridge to its right that I will be navigating:
Who knew the place was so dangerous?
Here is a lovely gaggle of willows (anyone know the correct collective?):
Just prior to stopping for the day I had a little staring contest with some gulls:
And to the left in this last picture is the little restaurant where we rested for a few minutes until Wilma arrived with the car, in which we scooted back to Ed and Wilma’s large, hospitable home and enjoyed some sweet fellowship.
It is so cool that you are making new friends and enjoying the trip.. Good to see no bad weather… I suspect either tomorrow or Thursday is going to be a take it easy day.. Just enough to take the edge off the last two days…. Incredible… Press on tomorrow. Enjoy your walk. Am looking forward with much anticipation to the photos of crossing the long bridgeway.. JIM
Yes, that it the Burlington Skyway. I can’t actually walk on that, but there is a lift bridge to the side of it that I can use. I’m looking forward to it too!
Thank you for the shipwreck photo – Dan will no doubt blow that up tomorrow and study it and look everyone of them up – I’m so glad you had company today and Sunday! What a blessing to have the end part of your journey bring such joy to your life, filled with pleasant views and happy memories! Now that’s what the journey was all about – oh yes, and the Grans at the end of the line!
That shipwreck display took me by surprise; I thought Lake Ontario was a safe lake!
Not sure if there exist official collective nouns for trees, but according to , the collective noun for snipes is a whisp or wisp. A wisp of willows sounds nice to me, and the snipes probably won’t mind. 🙂
Bravo — well done! A wisp of willows it is.
Works for any kind of tree, though.
I think the term is copse of trees.
Copse is good, but English has so many collectives; surely there is one specifically for willow trees!
Copse I have heard it. used in Orienteering
Allan… I’ve so enjoyed reading your blog and looking at the awesome pictures you’ve posted. A few more days, stay strong!
Still feeling strong, though there is heavy rain tonight so I’m mentally a bit shaky about tomorrow.
You know Allan, you will have walked more than the distance as the Camino Francès which is the Spanish part 750 km.
Not quite! As of the end of today I have walked 740 km.
how was it walking without your cart??
I actually prefer the cart, Rae. For one, I’m not used to carrying the backpack and it made my shoulders sore after a while. Second, it actually helps take some of the weight off my feet. So today with the cart was better.
i thought the collective for willows was more along the lines of “Bad-News-For-Plumbing” or something like that ;D Beautiful, definitely, but don’t plant them near your house, or the water main, or the sewer line…
Ah so! I guess they aggressively seek water; hence their proclivity for streams and rivers.
Nice day for you! A great walking partner in Ed as well as freedom again from your Cart. Phil and Marilyn seem to be eager to host you very soon.
Enjoying time with them this evening!
Can I ask a question on this thing? Why did you go from there to here? And why you walk?
Deep questions, Caleb. I went because I love my grandchildren. I walked because, well, … Maybe ask me again when I see you in a few days.
I can’t wait for PURPLE!
Me too, Camille. Everything is green and brown and red and yellow and blue. Not much purple yet.
The anticipation is building as you’re getting closer to your destination!
It certainly is with me. I’m trying hard to concentrate on each day, rather than thinking about the end. There is just so much good stuff to see and enjoy.
Slow Down! You are going to beat Fiona to Toronto. Have you been surprised at the pace you have been able to keep?
I initially planned to average about 15 miles per day. The one thing that surprised me is that the almost crippling stiffness I had at the end of each day stopped abruptly about a week ago. I feel just fine when I stop now.
I think the Purple that Camille was thirsty for actually has more to do with the markers on your progress map than your actual surroundings 🙂
Yes, I figured that out after I sent her that response, when I was looking at the data myself. Purple, here I come!