Bruce Trail Part 26 – 18th Sideroad to 9th Sideroad

After another long drive up to the Collingwood area again, we were well received by a very foggy and misty morning.  This wasn’t a bad start because I actually wasn’t looking forward to a hot and gnarly summer day.  Surprisingly, it was a decently cool morning — enough that we made use of our rain jackets as an outer shell and windbreaker.

It started with a foggy morning.

After another long drive up to the Collingwood area again [check out our previous hike a couple of weeks earlier], we were well received by a very foggy and misty morning.  This wasn’t a bad start because I actually wasn’t looking forward to a hot and gnarly summer day.  Surprisingly, it was a decently cool morning — enough that we made use of our rain jackets as an outer shell and windbreaker.

The fog got thicker as we hiked through the woods and into an open field.  Someone lost their boot.

With the fog getting thicker as we trekked along the Bruce Trail, there was a feel or atmosphere of mystery surrounding our day hike.  Some say mystical forest, others who saw the photo after the hike thought it reminded them of the forbidden forest in Harry Potter.

Either way, I just enjoyed the opportunity it provided for some really great photos.  Mother nature’s fog machine does it best!

Walking into a mystical forest.  Some suggest it is almost like a forest from Harry Potter.A really neat place to sit down right next to the stream.

The drawback to wading into the mist or fog is how damp everything gets.  Sure, it keeps you cool but once you begin walking into fields of tall grass — you realize you are getting wet from your boots all the way up.  The damp grass — sometimes with mildew — that brush up  against our knees as we hiked through the field would eventually soak our pants.  The gaiters didn’t help much because the grass were practically elbow high.  Why are fields of tall grass such a pain to hike through?

Finding ourselves back on the road in even thicker fog.This part of the trail has a lot of openings in the bush like these.

Fortunately, not all of the trail took us through fields.  We encountered really awesome crevices to peer down along the way and the odd house with “real looking” animal sculptures sitting on their lawn.

A pretty amazing crevice opening along the trail.What we thought were quite obese geese, were merely fakes.For the first time, we actually had to cross paths through a field of cows.  They were quite curious.

What really made my day was the fact we crossed paths with a field full of cows.  I’ve never encountered a part of the Bruce Trail that took us through a field with livestock actually present before but it was pretty entertaining looking at the cows and having them look at us while we took photographs of them and with them.

One friend noticed the bull walking over and we decided to get moving after that.  Alas, we had to wade through more fields of tall grass afterwards.  The most ironic aspect of this was that as soon as our pants would dry off, we would end up getting them wet again.

More tall and wet grass to wade through.

I am always impressed when the Bruce Trail takes us through what I feel is a “magical” or majestic-looking scene.  These are just areas where I would love to have a bench to sit on and appreciate the environment.

Speaking of benches, we encountered a bench in memory of someone who loved the Bruce Trail.  To think of how people have been transformed by the Bruce Trail and all the many tales that could be shared.  I think it’s a really great way to remember someone.

A memorial bench remembering a woman who loved the Bruce Trail. Very thoughtful.Friends enjoying this fascinating rocky part of the escarpment.

Eventually we found ourselves hiking down a part of the escarpment composed of a lot of rocky terrain.  The photograph doesn’t really do much justice to the surroundings but it is definitely a place to take a step back and admire.  A lot of people including myself often comment on how Ontario does not have any mountains to enjoy and from that aspect — and it is something I usually grumble about when I have the urge to hike above the alpine tree line — but getting to enjoy such a vast escarpment is a totally different experience.

Passing through (right next to) an extremely green crop field.I believe this was built by a combat engineer battalion -- one of the finest bridges I've had the opportunity to cross along this trail.

I love the bridges that I encounter along the trail and by far, the one I encountered this time around was just plain impressive.  I just wonder how many people and how long it took to build it.  It had some style to it as well and just looked elegant in the middle of the woods over a noisy river.

Similar to my encounters with abandoned cars or merchandise on the Bruce Trail, I found myself scratching my head when we spotted a mannequin pointing the way on the trail.  For humour sake?  Perhaps.

Just in case the trail markers weren't enough, a random mannequin jockey points the way. Spotted lawn chairs along the way that led us to a waterfall.

There are occasions when I wonder where do the long-distance trekkers camp along the Bruce Trail.  Then I receive an answer as I encounter a batch of lawn chairs next to a beautiful waterfall.  Camping in style and thank you to whomever decided to donate those red lawn chairs (not that we camped there)!

The waterfall near the campsite that the lawn chairs revealed.

At this point, the temperature was getting rather warm but it was feeling pretty damp.  Fortunately we were getting close to our destination point for the day — and just as I thought we had seen a lot — the trail led us through the Pinnacle Rock Farm. Definitely a beautiful part of the trail and from what I’ve read, was a donation by the Richardson Family and I appreciate them sharing it with us all!  Similar to the rocky escarpment we descended from earlier, this was a part of the trail where I could just sit there and contemplate life.

Passing through the Pinnacle Rock Farm. Passing through another tall field of grass and eventually entering the last bit of forest before completing this hike.

Of course these days it doesn’t seem like I can end the hike without wading through more fields of tall grass — and we do.  Thankfully, it is drier at this point in the day.  After we reach the car, we decide we needed some comfort food so we find ourselves enjoying some Swiss Chalet.  Another hiker’s staple?  Maybe!

Next hike is coming up, in the meanwhile check out the full gallery here.

Author: Ehren Cheung

An explorer of life and data. Reluctantly philosophical. A seeker of the ultimate cookie. Another tree-friendly soul with an affinity for hiking and sketching.

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