News Local

New trail opens in Northumberland County forest

By Valerie MacDonald, Northumberland Today

The second accessible trail in the Northumberland County Forest area, the Heritage Trail, is  officially open off Beagle Club Road north of Baltimore. The ribbon cutting took place on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017 before a huge crowd who watched (LtoR) County Warden Mark Walas, MPP Lou Rinaldi, accessibility chair Bob Roberston and county chief administrative officer Jennifer Moore do the honours.VALERIE MACDONALD/NORTHUMBERLAND TODAY/POSTMEDIA NETWORK

The second accessible trail in the Northumberland County Forest area, the Heritage Trail, is officially open off Beagle Club Road north of Baltimore. The ribbon cutting took place on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017 before a huge crowd who watched (LtoR) County Warden Mark Walas, MPP Lou Rinaldi, accessibility chair Bob Roberston and county chief administrative officer Jennifer Moore do the honours.VALERIE MACDONALD/NORTHUMBERLAND TODAY/POSTMEDIA NETWORK

NORTHUMBERLAND FOREST -- Northumberland County has officially opened a second accessible trail in the area of its county forest.

Heritage Trail is a wide gravel compressed pathway found off the Beagle Club Road parking lot north of Baltimore/County Road 45 meandering through mixed forest. It is about one kilometer in length and shorter than the first universal trail the county created and opened last year. That initial trail, Carstairs , is found further north on Beagle Club Road where it intersects with the Bowmanton Road area and has four loops that range in length from 0.8-kilometres to 2.2-kilometres..

"Sometimes we take our forests for granted," local riding MPP Lou Rinaldi said as he noted that $12,500 in Ontario 150 Community Capital Program funding help create this looped trail with interpretive signs detailing the history of the area.

The Northumberland Forest is a mature planted forest where logging has taken place for decades.

Accessibility committee chair Bob Roberston, who uses a walker, said the trail is good for those with both mobility and vision challenges.

People will be able to use and enjoy it without the impediment of "built obstacles" of the towns, he said.

County Warden Mark Walas welcomed everyone to the event, and both he and chief administrative officer Jennifer Moore thanked county staff, including forest, public works and administration employees, for their parts in completing this newest universal trail.

In a media release, the Warden notes that this "inclusive route is a fitting way to celebrate Canada 150 in Northumberland County. We thank the provincial government for the funding that has made this new resource possible."

A large crowd of forest users attended the official opening, including those in wheelchairs, on bikes, pushing strollers, plus others using canes and wheelchairs.

The universal trails are part of a growing trail system in the County Forest that is located in both Hamilton and Alnwick/Haldimand townships.

vmacdonald@postmedia.com