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Sunday, 24 September 2017

Our Day Hike at Luther Marsh

On August 6th, we decided to do a long day hike at another area that we are not yet familiar with. John looked on the map and zeroed in on Luther Marsh Wildlife Management Area. Now, there is hunting allowed there, at certain times, but not on Sundays, but it was still a tiny bit anxiety filling because, well, you know as well as I do that not Everybody follows rules lol!

Luther Marsh is about 20 mins west of Orangeville, and Grand Valley. As we got closer, it was very easy to forget we were only about 50 mins to an hour outside of Toronto. There are lots of cute little towns and hamlets on the way, as well as farms, and really beautiful, mainly flat, terrain. We were just about there, on a dirt road, when we saw a large creature at the side of the road. It is the first time I had seen a porcupine, and he was a big guy! I got out to try to see if I could get a better look at him, he had his back to me, quills up and ready in case I touched him, and he slowly walked further away from me. I did not get a great look at his face. We moved on after a couple minutes, and 2 photos, to let him be and continue on his way.

When we pulled up to the parking lot, a group of people we had seen coming down the road from the opposite way, were just getting into the parking lot after we were out and ready to hike on. It was the craziest and coolest thing I'd ever seen. Along with the couple of dogs they had with them, was a Canada Goose! It walked along side one of the women, and it got a bit noisy when it fell slightly behind, and scurried a bit more to catch up. It's wing feathers stuck out permanently, so we assumed it had been injured at some point, and was now in the care of one or 2 of the people in the group. We did indeed learn this, that it had followed one of them home a couple years back, when it was still young, from their walk, and has been with them ever since. Quite the site!

bald eagle flying in Luther MarshThe hike is basically around the shores of a really huge marsh body of water. There are forest and wetland areas all throughout the area. It's quite gorgeous. We did get to see a great bird sighting, one a bald eagle, though quite a distance away, flying over the marsh  a few times, probably hunting. We also saw that there had been probably Osprey nests in an open field, but no sign of the Osprey.

There were a lot of cattails in the marsh, tons of gorgeous wild flowers. One draw back to this hike was that the deer flies were the worst that I have ever experienced anyway. There were at least 30 around us at all times. After a while we kind of just got used to them, though they were horrendous. We did get a few reprieves, one luckily was during our stop to eat our lunch, near a lookout tower. This is where we spotted the bald eagle flying.

After our hike, we stopped in Orangeville at a pub in town, The Foal Village Pub and we were thrilled with our dinners! The food was awesome, the staff was friendly and great, and we really liked the whole town too. During our meal, a woman with a little teacup Chihuahua stopped by the window and she posed the dog for a shot :-) There's an awesome tattoo shop in town with the most amazing interior decor! It was closed so we could only look in the window. There were a lot of little shops on the main street, we stopped into a couple. We got a little decorative iron bird in one.

This place, Luther Marsh, is definitely a must see. During Spring migration it is probably chalk full of birds, as well as Fall migration time, and the raptor time. We will make sure to get back there at some point another year for sure.

monkey face tree at Luther MArsh

green leopard frog at Luther Marsh

cute teacup Chihuahua in Orangeville

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