There are several places dotted around the property, peaceful and unique spots for tranquil solitude or conscious gathering, and several others planned and on the way.
Fire Pit & Gathering Area
Located within the ruins of the original settler’s barn foundation, all that remains from well over a century ago are portions of the original stone walls. The gathering area is open to the sky and has a fire pit surrounded by a stone bench as well as moveable cedar benches and picnic tables. The private camping tenting sites are close by.
This grand old maple near the centre of the property, likely 150+ years old, has seen many generations of people and activity take place in its lifetime. Nearly 4 feet in diameter, it will take three or four people to join hands around it. But you can still give it a hug on your own while you listen with all your senses for the wisdom it may share with you. There is also a beautiful story, I will tell you if you ask, of how the Spirit Tree was an integral part of the series of events that brought me to sell my place in the suburbs and make the move to living sustainably in the country and be a guardian of these woodlands.
Not far from the main house is a naturalized dug pond. This is not a pond to swim or fish in, but actually an extension of the woodland habitat. In April & May, spring peepers create an amazing surround-sound at night. In summer, dragonflies can be seen doing acrobatics above the pond. And all through the warm months, turtles and frogs are to be seen basking. Sometimes a beaver visits in spring, Mink and muskrats are also to be seen by the keen observer.
Wetlands Observation Area
A short dead-end trail leaves the southwest orange trail loop to a peaceful area with two chairs and large candle lanterns. This is a nice spot to watch and listen to birds, especially those which tend to prefer wetlands rather than being forest-dwellers. During Aug-Oct and Feb-Apr, this is the best spot to get a clear view of the sky at sunset.
There are a few portions of trail which appear to be corridors through the trees. There is something special about walking (or snowshoeing or skiing) down a corridor through these tunnels. Presently, the longest tunnel is through white pines, south of the settler’s barn foundation ruins. There is also a nice one, meandering and mystical in nature, through dense cedars along the northwest orange trail loop.
Forest Labyrinth – completion sometime in 2016 – details to come!
Forest Soundscapes – ongoing development – details to come!