Join us from August 21-23, 2020 and discover what makes this area a UNESCO biosphere! The festival will feature hiking throughout the biosphere, from Sydenham to Brockville.
Covid- 19 Precautions:
We encourage people to get outside and nurture their mental well being through events like the FAB Trails Festival. Here are precautions that we will be taking for our outdoor activities.
- Total of 10 people per trail, including leads.
- 2m social distancing.
- Stay home if sick, practice good hand hygiene, cover your cough or sneeze.
- Names and contact information will be collected which will act as a means of contact tracing in the event of a Covid-19 case in one of our groups.
Common symptoms of COVID-19 include
- Fever (temperature of 37.8°C or greater)
- New or worsening cough
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea)
- Sore throat
- Difficulty swallowing
- New olfactory or taste disorder(s)
- Nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain
- Runny nose, or nasal congestion – in absence of underlying reason for these symptoms such as seasonal allergies, post nasal drip, etc.
Dogs * In places were dogs are welcome, please keep your dog on a leash and remember, it's your Doo-ty to pick it up! Be prepared that there may not be garbage cans in some areas.
August 21st: Land Trust Day - Conservation of Biodiversity
Glen Elbe to Davis Lock Rd. = 35 minute drive
Davis Lock Rd to First Lake = 60 minute drive
9am - Thousand Islands Watershed Land Trust
Glen Elbe - 870 County Road 42
Take a Hike Through Time
This is an old farm property with an 1850s house and a trail going through the woods behind the house. The trail visits the old site of a hamlet, mostly lost to time. The key features along it are the ruins of an old grist and sawmill, the waterfall that once powered them, and the rail bed for the trains that serviced the area. Learn about natural succession, outlining the history of the property and highlighting the natural processes that have caused the hamlet to fall to ruin in a relatively short period of time.
11:30am - Rideau Waterway Land Trust
JH Fullard - 1408 Davis Lock Road
Hike on Sugarbush Island
Sugarbush Island is a 26 acre island near Chaffeys Lock in Lake Opinicon. It is an integral part of the 385 acre wetland complex known as the Murphy’s Bay Wetland Complex, a Provincially Significant Wetland (PSW) and Ministry of Natural Resources Fish Sanctuary. Sugarbush Island, widely regarded as one of the best natural areas in the Rideau Corridor and one of its top botanical sites, is a precious remnant of the region’s original natural landscapes. It is home to many animal species-at-risk including the Northern Map Turtle, Gray Ratsnake and Eastern Ribbon Snake. Its woodland areas provide rare habitat for many uncommon breeding birds, such as rare Common Nighthawk and the spectacular Red-Shouldered Hawk. The rich woodland nurtures the growth of many deciduous and coniferous trees. Large specimens of Butternut and Bitternut share the island with Sugar Maple and majestic White Pines. The understorey consists of Dogwood and other flowering shrubs, while the shoreline vegetation helps reduce erosion and filters out contaminants, protecting both the wetland and the shoreline habitat.
3pm - Land Conservancy for Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox & Addignton
Depot Creek - 6329 First Lake Road
Meadow, woodland, wetland. Life on the edge of the Shield
The Depot Creek Nature Reserve provides habitat to at least 691 species. Of these, 11 species are listed by the provincial government as species at risk, endangered, threatened, or of special concern. Anne Robertson will lead the group on the trails of this 71-acre property offering visitors a chance to explore a variety of habitats — wetlands, woodlands, and open spaces.
August 22nd: Amazing Places Day - How People Interact with the Natural Environment.
Gould Lake to Foley Mountain = 45 minute drive
Foley Mountain to Brockville Tunnel = 60 minute drive
9am - Mine Loop Trail at Gould Lake - Cataraqui Conservation Authority
Mine Lake Loop Trail at Gould Lake
Eastern Ontario was once one of the mica mining capitals of the world and, between 1870 and 1910. The area is now highlighted for it’s natural beauty and diversity. Between 1967 and 1972, the Cataraqui Region Conservation Authority bought 589 hectares from private owners and Loughborough Township and opened the area as the Gould Lake Conservation Area. Located along the southern fringe of the Canadian Shield, Gould Lake and the surrounding lands are not only important for water management reasons, they also provide excellent wildlife habitat and rich biodiversity, and offer many opportunities for nature appreciation and recreation in all seasons. Self-Directed.
11am - Spy Rock at Foley Mountain - Rideau Valley Conservation Authority
Foley Mountain is an 830 acre property with interpretive trails and a beautiful lookout atop Spy Rock, also nominated as an Amazing Place. The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority is committed to protecting shorelines and habitat. The Foley Mountain area is ecologically important and hosts many species at risk.
The lookout is 140m from the parking area and is accessible by wheelchair.
There are two trail options:
Beaver Pond Loop (1.3km) - The RVCA has created an interpretive online resource for users using the Google Earth app. When you register for this hike, you will be sent an instruction sheet.
Mobility Trail Loop (350m) - This is an accessible trail with a stone dust path and three interpretive signs.
7$ Fee with several options for payment. [pay machine on site that accepts coin and credit, on-line/app at https://www.rvca.ca/conservation-areas/purchase-a-pass]
Dogs: YES (no garbage disposal on site)
3pm - Brockville Tunnel and the Aquatarium
Take a hike in downtown Brockville! Start at Blockhouse Island and head to the Brockville Railway Tunnel. If the Tunnel is open continue the experience through the tunnel to the north side and back again. From the south Tunnel entrance, head west to the Aquatarium along concrete paths all along Brockville’s waterfront!
Canada’s first railway tunnel was undertaken and opened in 1860 to connect B&O railway to Brockville’s waterfront. Workers tunneled through 525 m of granite and soil under the central part of the city. The tunnel saw rail traffic well into the late 1900’s with the last engine passing through it in 1969. The tracks were removed in 1976 and in 1983 the tunnel and waterfront property was acquired from the Canadian Pacific Railway. Water working its way through the masonry left behind mineral deposits in the form of stalactites that glitter in the light. These formations took a scant 40 years to develop. This is compared to some of the world’s most famous caverns that grow at a rate of 1 cubic inch per 120 years! A visit to the tunnel will transport you back to a time when the Brockville waterfront fueled an industrial boom that put Brockville on the map and helped shape the regions economy. You will also glimpse how that same technology is no match for the power of nature and the results will amaze you.
The Aquatarium is a hands on learning complex featuring live animals and interactive activities for the whole family! If the science centre is open, head in for a one of a kind experience. See the website above or more information.
Parking: YES metered
Bathrooms: YES (BlockHouse Island)
Sunday August 23rd: Nature Experiences
7am - The Bay Trail/TBD
Join us for an early Sunday morning for a walk with the birds. This hike will be lead by two local bird enthusiasts, Bryan and Lana. Learn more about what birds that make this place home for the summer, how to listen for them and how to identify them.
10am - Landon Bay, Thousand Islands National Park
Landon Bay, 302 Thousand Islands Parkway
They live where?!?
Turtles, frogs, snakes, and skinks can be found in unexpected places. Why did the turtle cross the road? How did a reptile climb that tree? Is there anything pleasant about marshes? Join Thousand Islands National Park’s R.A.R.E. (Reptile and Amphibian Recovery and Education) program coordinator to learn more about these incredible creatures, and the habitats they call home.
Please provide attendance numbers for each hike/event.