A bagpiper led a parade of dignitaries to the newly upgraded access point to the Grand River at Wilsons Flats, near Elora. A pair of osprey presided over the proceedings from their nest at the top of a tall pole. Then the guests enjoyed chicken and ribs, from the Lancaster Smokehouse, sitting on the newly installed benches and picnic tables. The access point has improved parking, a port-a-potty, canoe rack and signage.
This is the first in a series of projects to upgrade all 33 access points along the length of the Grand River. The project was supported by Friends of the Grand River, Grand River Raceway, Pearle Hospitality, The Township of Centre Wellington, RTO4, Grand River Conservation Authority, Ministry of Natural Resources, Department of Fisheries and Oceans, and local contractors. The improved amenities will encourage local residents and tourists to enjoy the spectacular scenery from the river.
Cottontail Road Trail/Trans Canada Trail (14 km on road)
I took the opportunity to continue mapping the Trans Canada Trail, parking in Elora near where we finished our ride a few weeks ago. From Elora, the trail follows the Cottontail Road Trail, connecting the Elora Cataract Trailway to the Kissing Bridge Trailway, which is part of the Guelph to Goderich (G2G) Rail Trail. The trail starts on busy Highway 21, but quickly turns onto a gravel laneway. From there, it takes quiet country backroads through Wellington County farm country to the G2G.
I collected another quirky sign–“Free Range Chickens Ahead”!
The trail meets the G2G Rail Trail at a simple Mennonite Meeting House.
From there, I rode to the Grand Opening of Access Point #4 and then back to Elora. After that, I needed to cool off and could not resist an artisanal ice cream at Sweet Distractions on the main street in Elora. Try the lemon ginger sorbet or the dark chocolate gelato (or both!)