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Summer in Muskoka 2013
Magazines | Seasonal 2013-05-30 09:11:22
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    Summer in MUSKOKA www.muskokatrails.com 2013 MUSKOKA TRAIL MAPS WILDLIFE WATERFALLS EVENT LISTINGS ATTRACTIONS Your traditions and memories begin here

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    OPEN May 18 - Oct 12, 2013 Hot Seats Cool Events Year-Round Take a trip back in time! 88 Brunel Road - Huntsville 705.789.7576 muskokaheritageplace.org 2 Summer in Muskoka 2013 37 Main Street East - Huntsville Box Office 705.789.4975 algonquintheatre.ca huntsville.ca

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    CONTENTS 4 Sighting Muskoka's wildlife 7 Welcome to Bracebridge 8 Bracebridge Trails 11 Huntsville Trails 14 Gravenhurst Trails 16 Muskoka Trails Overview 18 Summer in Baysville Muskoka's trails network runs throughout the district's municipalities, and each municipality has its own unique trail systems. Individual trails committees also produce their own detailed trails maps, which can be found at municipal offices, chambers of commerce and tourism information centres. In this guide, descriptions are uniform throughout. Length: The total distance, return, is given. Trails that are not loops will also have the distance one way in parentheses. Uses: In most cases, all passive uses are allowed, including horseback riding and bicycle and mountain bikes. No motorized vehicles are permitted during the summer months. Snowmobiling is a permitted use on some trails in the winter. Degree of difficulty: Refers to the average difficulty of the entire trail. You may find some portions slightly more difficult. 20 Destination Dorset 21 Lake of Bays Trails 22 Discover Dwight 24 Visit Rosseau 26 Muskoka Lakes Trails 28 Georgian Bay Trails 29 Thundering glory - waterfalls A Key to the Muskoka Trails Summer in MUSKOKA is published by Cottage Country Communications, a division of: Problem areas: Trail descriptions may have cautions about where poor conditions exist. Please keep these cautions in mind. To join the trails effort, the donation of cash and time by dozens of volunteers keeps Muskoka's trails growing and improving. To find out how you can help, contact the municipal office nearest you. www.muskokatrailscouncil.com info@muskokatrailscouncil.com Tel: 705-641-0562 in co-operation with Muskoka's Municipal Recreational Trails Committees. Town of Gravenhurst: (705) 687-3412 Town of Bracebridge: (705) 645-5264 Town of Huntsville: (705) 789-1751 Township of Muskoka Lakes: (705) 765-3156 Township of Lake of Bays: (705) 635-2272 Spread the word: More copies of this guide, Summer in Muskoka, have been shipped to information centres across Muskoka and to advertisers. Some specific locations are below: Bracebridge Visitor Centre: Bird Mill Mews, 1-1 Manitoba St., Bracebridge (705) 645-8121 Huntsville-Lake of Bays Chamber of Commerce: 8-1 West St. N., Huntsville (705) 789-4771 Gravenhurst Chamber of Commerce: 685-2 Muskoka Rd. N., Gravenhurst (705) 687-4432 Muskoka Tourism: Highway 11 North, just south of Gravenhurst: 1-800-267-9700 West Muskoka Visitor Centre: Muskoka Rd. 169, Bala (705) 762-5663 Summer in Muskoka Mail: P.O. Box 180, Bracebridge ON P1L 1T6 Street Address: 12 - 440 Ecclestone Drive, Bracebridge Phone: (705) 646-1314 Fax: (705) 645-6424 E-mail: mm.info@sunmedia.ca Website: www.muskokatrails.com Copyright © 2013 Sun Media Corp. All rights reserved. Reproduction of any material published in Summer in Muskoka is strictly prohibited without the written permission of the publisher. Cover Photograph: Eleanor Kee Wellman Summer in Muskoka 2013 3

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    An adult loon will stay close to the chick. They live on lakes where there are plenty of fish. Sighting Muskoka's wildlife Red squirrels are small and feisty. 4 Summer in Muskoka 2013 Photographs by: Eleanor Kee Wellman By Doug Smith Hiking on Muskoka's trails is one of the best ways to see some of the region's more common wildlife inhabitants. The many trails take you through a variety of habitat, typical of the region, offering some excellent wildlife viewing opportunities. Take along your binoculars, be observant and quiet and you'll be well rewarded. Many of the trails skirt beaver ponds or small lakes, which are always a draw for wildlife. As you approach the body of water from the trail, stop to scan the shoreline. Look for painted turtles sunning themselves on the half-submerged logs in the shallows. Use your binoculars to get a look at their colourful 'painted' throat and undersides before they slip off of the log into the safety of the water. White-tailed deer often visit a pond or small lake for a drink in the early morning or later in the evening. A doe may appear at a secluded open spot, accompanied by one or two fawns, which may still be showing their faint spots. A lone buck, his newly forming antlers still in velvet, could also make an appearance. While they may not be a novelty, if you are used to seeing them in the city, raccoons are in their natural element here.

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    Look for them fishing for crayfish in the rocky shallows, or hunting for frogs amongst the cattails. Mom may have a family of kits trailing behind, each a miniature replica of their parent, with black mask and bushy, ringed tail. They have much to learn about making it on their own and preparing for their first hibernation by November. The familiar mallard duck, easily recognized by the male's green head, rusty chest and light brown body, is often seen in the shallows. The males form bachelor parties for the summer, having nothing to do with raising a family. Look for the more plainly coloured hen in another section of the pond, accompanied by a number of ducklings. Shyer than the ubiquitous mallard, wood ducks prefer swampier areas, nesting, as their name suggests, in the hollows of trees. Again, the female is less colourful than her showy mate, but still a uniquely coloured duck. You may hear her before seeing her, with her distinctive squeaky whistled call, as she calls to her brood to stay close. When on a trail that passes by a larger lake, you may see a large congregation, or crèche, of young common merganser ducklings out on the open water. They'll be accompanied by several females, easily identified by their grey body and tousled reddish head. Mergansers are fish ducks, inhabiting the larger lakes where they dive for small fish, the mainstay of their diet. Common loons are another inhabitant of the larger lakes, and for the same reason - to dive for fish. You may hear their mournful wails or short hoots as the adults communicate to A hermit thrush can add music to your hike. A quiet approach is needed to catch sight of a Midland painted turtle basking in the sun. Photographs by: Eleanor Kee Wellman Summer in Muskoka 2013 5

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    Look for racoons hunting for frogs amongst the cattails. This young racoon is ready to flee. each other across the lake. Look for the one or two chicks near one of the adults, or possibly hitching a free ride on their backs if they are still small enough. Muskoka's uplands trails host a different set of wildlife. Chipmunks are sure to cross your path at some point during your hike. These striped ground squirrels are abundant throughout cottage country. Charming and fun to watch, they are constantly on the move, and on the lookout for their many predators, ready to scramble to the safety of their underground homes. Red squirrels scold your presence from the safety of a red pine when you invade their space. Smaller, more northerly cousins of the black and gray squirrels, the reds prefer coniferous stands. They spend a great deal of time and energy gathering the seeds from the pine cones, as well as other seeds and nuts, amassing a store for winter that could rival that of Scrat, the character of the Ice Age movies notoriety. 6 Summer in Muskoka 2013 Wild turkeys have been re-introduced to Muskoka. Another upland inhabitant that has become increasingly common in recent years is the wild turkey. Re-introduced into the region in the 1980s, they have not only survived, but thrived. During the summer look for the hen with a brood of poults following her as they search for almost anything edible in the fields and along the edges of the woods. Other birds are more often heard than seen. Most songbirds are more vocal early in the morning and later in the evening. Once heard, try to follow the sound to its source and have your binoculars ready and a bird book handy to help with identification. The thrushes are especially musical later in the day, serenading you with flute-like notes, their ethereal quality lending a mellow air to the close of your day of hiking. Whether enjoying the upland trails or the shorelines of the region's numerous waterways, there are many wild inhabitants to discover when hiking Muskoka's trails. Photographs by: Eleanor Kee Wellman

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    Signature's Eatery Muskoka's Own Italian Eatery Think Signature's Eatery for Homemade Sandwiches, Soups & Desserts Catering Available for all occassions 16A Manitoba Street Bracebridge, ON (705) 645-1919 mez.daponte@sympatico.ca Welcome to Bracebridge 6 John St to Royal LePage 4 McMurray St 1 Manitoba St 2 Kimberley Ave Ontario St River Rd 42 Bracebridge 3 4 www.bracebridge.ca 5 1 2 Debbie Vernon Salesperson-SRES® 100 West Mall Road, Bracebridge, ON P1L 1Z1 705-645-5257 x248 www.DebbieVernon.com vernon@muskoka.com Visit my website for helpful information if you are a first-time buyer, needing a bigger home, planning to purchase a cottage, or needing to downsize. 16 3 For Him and Her & Li'l Tiggs too! ONE STOP SHOPPING FOR YOUR FASHION NEEDS 48 Manitoba Street, Bracebridge 645-4743 Worth Repeating HOME/COTTAGE FURNISHINGS & ANTIQUES, VINTAGE, RETRO, COLLECTABLES 31 Manitoba St. Bracebridge 705-646-1246 info@worthrepeating.ca www.worthrepeating.ca Large Outdoor Patio Casual Fine Dining 88 Manitoba St. TOP OF THE HILL, DOWNTOWN BRACEBRIDGE 705-645-9776 WWW.OLDSTATION.CA 6 Summer in Muskoka 2013 7 4 5

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    Bracebridge Bay Trail Length: 1.5 km loop Level of Difficulty: Easy Surface: Natural, paved and boardwalk Uses: Walking, hiking Signage: Yes Trail Highlights: This historic walk provides a scenic view of Bracebridge Bay and Kelvin Grove Park. A footbridge leads across the falls to the Kelvin Grove Park and continues along the Muskoka River to the Riverside Inn. Historic plaques. Location: In the heart of Bracebridge. At the south end of Manitoba Street at the Bird Mill Mews Visitor Centre. For map see www.bracebridge.ca Parking is available on the east side of Bird Mews Information Centre, below the Bracebridge Falls and Kelvin Grove Park. Bracebridge Resource Management Centre Length: Five trails 3 to 8 kms with a total of 12 kms. Level of Difficulty: Easy to moderate (a few steep hills) Surface: Natural surface Uses: Walking, hiking, mountain biking, snowshoeing, excellent groomed crosscountry ski trails Signage: Yes Trail Highlights: Five trails follow the main branch of the Muskoka River. Scenic view of Duck Chutes. The level sandy plains, shallow marshes and rugged terrain are typical of the Muskoka landscape. The managed forested areas obscure previous uses, including cattle grazing, gravel pits and logging roads. Location: Highway 11, north of Bracebridge. Entrance is on the east side of Highway 11, 2.4 kilometres north of High Falls Bridge. Parking is available. Covered Bridge Trail Length: 2 to 3 kms, depending on return or loop route. Level of Difficulty: Easy, one short hill Surface: Natural surface and paved Uses: Walking, hiking, mountain biking Parking: Bracebridge Shopping Centre or roadside in Covered Bridge. Trail description: The trail follows Beaver Creek along a high ridge, 8 Summer in Muskoka 2013 Bracebridge Trails behind residential properties crossing Beaver Creek into a beautiful quiet wooded area. The trail continues along the east shore and exits at Mooreland Court, in the Meadow Heights subdivision, or pick up the South Monck Trail on the Trans Canada Pipe Line. Follow the trail signs back to the Covered Bridge. Location: Ball's Drive. From Highway 11, take Highway118 West (Ecclestone Drive) to Ball's Drive, continue along Ball's Drive behind the shopping centre, cross over Beaver Creek on the Covered Bridge to the trail. Kerr Park Trail Length: 1 km loop Level of Difficulty: Easy Surface: Natural Uses: Walking, hiking, bird watching and mountain biking Signage: Yes. Trail Highlights: The trail starts in Kerr Park, follows the hill to a large bird watching observatory, which overlooks the lagoons. There is an abundance of birds. The trail continues south around the lagoons and back to the starting point. Location: Beaumont Drive. From Highway 11 exit onto Highway 118 West (Ecclestone Drive) to Beaumont Drive. Continue for 0.5 kilometres to Kerr Park. Parking available at Kerr Park chalet parking lot. South Monck Trail Length: 7.5 kms, loop. Level of Difficulty: Easy to moderate, a few steep hills Surface: Natural surface and some paved roads Uses: Walking, hiking, mountain biking Trail description: This trail will take you through mixed bush, evergreen groves and along country lanes. The trail turns west down an old colonization road, through beautiful stands of mature pines. Follow the trail and continue into open fields behind the Muskoka Highlands Golf Course back into the Covered Bridge subdivision to Ball's Drive. Location: Ball's Drive. From Highway 11 exit onto Highway118 West (Ecclestone Drive) west to Ball's Drive. The trail follows the road behind the shopping centre. The trail starts on the Trans Canada Pipeline. Strawberry Point Lookout Trail Length: 2.5 kms west to Lake Muskoka 2 kms east one way to Kerr Park. Up to 5 km depending on the access point. Level of Difficulty: Moderate, but a few short hills Surface: Natural surface, with one steep paved hill leading down to the water Uses: West Lookout Trail - Walking, hiking, mountain biking, snowshoeing and some cross-country skiing Trail Highlights: The highlight of the West Trail is the beautiful panoramic view of Lake Muskoka. In the fall the colours are magnificent. The trail ends at the water's edge. Swim or just sit on the rocks beside the water, but remember to save enough energy to climb back up the hill. The trail meanders through a vicinity of spruce, birch, young beech, maple and pine trees. You may catch sight of assorted wildlife, deer, rabbits, squirrels, foxes and chipmunks. There is an abundance of birds. You may even see a pair of broad-winged hawks who nest across the bay. The topography features a geologic dome. This ancient rock has been uplifted to the surface. Watch for rock debris left by glaciers passing over this area. Location: Beaumont Drive and Stephens Bay Road. From Highway 11 exit west onto Highway 118 (Ecclestone Drive) to Beaumont Road. Three access points: 1) Kerr Park. Exit off Beaumont Drive. 2) Henry Road exit from Beaumont Drive. 3) Strawberry Bay Road. Exit 3.5 kilometres on Beaumont Drive to Stephens Bay Road, drive one kilometre to Strawberry Bay Road. This trail is part of the Trans Canada Trail. Trans-Canada Trail The Bracebridge section of the Trans Canada Trail is 26 kilometres long and is described here in sections starting from the south end. Due to the nature of this trail distances shown are only for the length of that section. Please double the distance if you are doing a return trip walk. Parking is available on Stephens Bay Road at Strawberry Bay Road, at Kerr Park, in the town of Bracebridge, at Macaulay Public School and on both sides of High Falls. Parking along the

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    30th Annual 2013 118 Lake Muskoka Santa's Village Cycling Centre Santaís VillageRd. Bracebridge Trails THE AGRICULTURAL BUILDING Fri., August 23rd 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Sat., August 24th 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sun., August 25th 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ADMISSION: $5.00 Good for the weekend! SELECTED DEALERS: Canadiana * Furniture * Lamps * Jewellery * Coins Silver * China * Paper Items and Advertising * Dolls * Pressed Glass * Prints Books * Toys * Quilts * Linens * Hats * Musical Instruments * Persian Carpets FEATURING CANING DEMONSTRATION South Monck Trail Covered Bridge Trail Strawberry Bay Rd. Stephens Bay Rd. To Skeleton Lake Henry Rd. Strawberry Bay Point Trail 4 118 BallísDr. Wellington St. Kerr Park Trail River Rd. Manitoba St. Beaumont Dr. Ecclestone Dr. 11 Pine St. Cedar Lane 11 SantaísVillageRd. TaylorRd 4 11 Resource Management Centre Wilson's Falls Trail Bracebridge Bay Trail N 117 erlink Graphics Rob Donald (705) 765 3140 Summer in Muskoka 2013 9

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    sides of the road is possible at other entry and exit points. Section 1 Length: 6.67 km Level of Difficulty: Moderate with one big hill and some swampy areas Surface: Mostly natural with a bit of paved road Uses: Hiking, mountain biking Trail Highlights: Beginning on District Road 17 at the intersection with the Ennis Bay Road. It follows alongside the Old Stagecoach Road for 2.7 kilometres. The next 0.7 kilometres is on the Stephens Bay Road, which is hard surfaced. A turn to the right opposite the Strawberry Bay Parking area takes you through mixed woods for 2.27 kilometres to Kerr Park. There is a steep hill at the beginning of this path and sections by Henry Road can be wet at times. Washrooms are available at Kerr Park. Past Kerr Park, a 0.77-kilometre section travels through fields to Ecclestone Drive. Section 2 Length: 5.9 km Level of Difficulty: Easy Surface: Paved and gravel roads and walkways Uses: Hiking, walking, mountain biking Trail Highlights: The trail proceeds 2.92 kilometres, by way of roads and walkways, through the town to the bridge on Taylor Road. Travelling 2.2 kilometres on River Road and Wilson's Falls Road leads to a power plant on the river. The trail climbs above the dam to a bridge over the falls. Here it parts from the Wilson's Falls Hiking Trail and proceeds through forest and field 0.93 kilometres to Cedar Lane. There are some wet areas along the river and a modest climb up the riverbank to Cedar Lane. 10 Summer in Muskoka 2013 Bracebridge Trails Section 3 Length: 3.2 km Level of Difficulty: Easy Surface: Paved roads Uses: Hiking, walking, mountain biking, cycling Trail Highlights: 3.2 kilometres on hardsurfaced road takes you to High Falls. A walking bridge gives an excellent view over the falls and the countryside below them. There is a picnic area on the south side of the falls. Section 4 Length: 5.8 km Level of Difficulty: Moderate Surface: Natural surfaces Uses: Hiking, mountain biking Trail Highlights: 5.8 kilometres of trail takes you from High Falls through mixed bush to Lone Pine Drive. This section has a few wet spots and several steep hills - some of this section is still under construction. The next section is not formally open at this time. Section 5 Length: 5.8 km Level of Difficulty: Moderate Surface: Natural surfaces Uses: Hiking, mountain biking Trail Highlights: 1.1 kilometre of trail through mixed bush takes you across the train tracks, makes a sharp left turn beyond this and follows an old homesteading road to the Little Road. This seasonal road takes you in a northerly direction for 3.1 kilometres to connect with the Huntsville section of the Trans Canada Trail. Wilson's Falls Hiking Trail Length: 2.5 kms or 7.5 kms if starting at location 3. Level of Difficulty: Easy to moderate. Access point 4 rougher and more physical. Natural surface and some paved roads. Surface: Natural surface boardwalk and some stairways Uses: Walking, hiking, picnics Trail description: A very picturesque trail. The trail leads to a 12.6-metre drop of the main branch of the Muskoka River at Wilson's Falls. A walking bridge across the top of the falls gives a beautiful view of Wilson's Falls. The trail winds its way through hardwood forests and pine stands, where you may discover a wide variety of plant and animal wildlife. A section of the trail follows the Muskoka River. Spectacular in the spring when the water is high and the trilliums are in bloom. Location: Cedar Lane, Sander Drive, Rodgers Road and Wilson's Falls Road. From Highway 11 take Cedar Lane West exit. Four access points: 1) Access is one kilometre north of Taylor Road on Cedar Lane at Macaulay Public School. The trail starts at the back of the school. 2) Access is at Sander Drive. Take Cedar Lane West to Pine St past Taylor Road and left at Sander Drive 3) Access is at Rogers Road & Dawson Crescent intersection. Take Cedar Lane West to Pine Street (left) to end to Kaye Road to Dawson to Rogers Road. 4) Access is at Wilson's Falls Road. Take Cedar Lane West to Taylor Road (left) and follow towards downtown Bracebridge and then go right onto River Rd (just before railway tracks). River Road becomes Wilson's Falls Road; continue to falls. This road follows the Muskoka River to the power station and the access to the trail. A footbridge allows you to cross over the falls and continue on the trail on the east side of the river. This trail is part of the Trans Canada Trail. For map see www.bracebridge.ca Parking is available at Macaulay Public School on weekends and after 4 p.m. on weekdays. Roadside on Rogers Road and Dawson Crescent. Do you want to find a new favourite trail? Summer in MUSKOKA Available on-line at www.muskokatrails.com

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