August 20, 2014 – Sign Work Done!
“Looking back at what I have put up in this last round… it’s a major accomplishment… and surely the best signed 190 kms of trail in Manitoba… and probably Canada… if I do say so myself!” A quote from our Trail Boss who worked at making the trail more visible for safety and awareness. The new Trans Canada Trail signs are really colorful and will surely catch your eye! Go for a walk or bike the trail, near or far, there’s lots to see!
August 6, 2014 – Emerson Signs
Trail Boss focused on adding more signs in Emerson today. The trail here meanders quite a bit from the Manitoba Travel Tourist Information Centre on Hwy 75 to Lake Louise (yes, we have one too!), Fort Dufferin, the Forgotten Forest Trail, the Red River Bridge, the Suspension Bridge…. He also added this special post to feature the Canada – U. S. Border…. Look for it if you on the Crow Wing Trail in Emerson!
July 25, 2014 – Maintenance Day 3
Pictures left to right: South of St. Malo, wet access to interpretive signs; wildlfowers around interpretive signs; mowing St. Adolphe trail south of Red River bridge.
Only section of trail needing maintenance in RM of Franklin north of Senkiw Bridge is a mile of forest trail linking to RM of De Salaberry. There is no access for us to mow this section as the entrance is chained. RM of Franklin has agreement with private landowner to maintain trail. So we drove to south of St. Malo to the new trail re-route. It is replacing the section on Moose Creek Rd which needed to be abandoned due to impassible conditions with ruts and rocks. The new route is better but still a challenge and on the list of projects to repair as soon as we can access funding. As we cannot mow this section from the south (section with no access), we get to mow this section twice… there and back. The result is a double wide swath where rocks don’t impede. I walked in front lopping and more to be a second set of eyes for the tractor as this was new and unfamiliar territory. There are so many rocks the operator can easily miss seeing one and damage the mower. There is also new growth of volunteer willows and nuisance poplars quickly growing on this section, so keeping them back is necessary. I counted 43 potholes/wet spots on this mile stretch. Some are very deep and from what I am seeing this year overall, there are a variety of vehicles using these public road allowances. At the end end of this trail, at the intermunicipal boundary between the RM of Franklin and the RM of De Salaberry, we mowed a large round area. It looks good. Read more on Maintenance Day 3 …
July 24, 2014 – Maintenance Day 2
Pictures left to right: Mowing north – south trail around Kirkpatrick Swamp and cutting trees south of north gate to Senkiw Bridge.
Travelling on the 49th Parallel – 6 miles of “no road” – is a great adventure, in more ways than one! Surface is rough with natural speed bumps i.e. years of pocket gophers making mounds and badgers digging their holes. Mowing is very slow. We were mowing in 42” high very thick broom grass. This long stretch of virtually nothing creates an awe of the vastness of the Canadian Prairies… No farm yards, no granaries, almost nothing but endless fields of grain. Barley, wheat, canola and soybeans on the Canadian side, contrasted on the American side with wheat, soybeans and sugar beets (seeded so precisely). As we mow eastward, in the horizon we see the rise of the aspen wooded escarpment. The six miles seem endless as we inch along over the bumps, but there is no shortage of things of interest to view. Amongst the tall grass much is at bloom in every color… from the purple thistles which are attracting yellow canaries feeding on the nigger seed to tall yellow wild sunflowers. Then we pass a huge Trans Canada Pipeline station, across from an American gas station, and then a large hog barn (no smell)… READ MORE ON MAINTENANCE DAY 2 …
July 23, 2014 – Maintenance Day 1
After a month of weather delaying our mowing, we finally started. Thank you to JKW Construction –new campground operator in Emerson – for renting us his tractor. Started with Emerson lower river bottom forest section, which we opened in June and then it flooded. Heavy rains have really soaked everything. Most of trail is dry enough, but drains, ditches, and standing water puddles are causing us problems. We almost got stuck twice today!
Wet conditions and heat have sent growth cycle for grass into high gear. Cutting broom and quack grass as high as back tires. Found burdock thistles 10’ high (brought a tape measure) with 3” base stems that make them look like Christmas trees!
As we were cutting towards Emerson Swinging Bridge, two vehicles drive up with ten ladies. Three were from Australia and others from Altona. One was the Emerald Sunflower Queen for the Sunflower Festival this weekend. All were enthused to see us mowing and glad to have their picture taken on the bridge. None were happy about relentless mosquitoes, but no wood ticks! Update tomorrow as we head on into Franklin! Trail Boss Wayne
July 17, 2014
Most of the trail from St-Pierre-Jolys north is in good condition. Between St-Pierre-Jolys and St. Malo, conditions are good except for the section in repair (see below). South of St. Malo, grass covered sections will be harder to bike as mowing has not started yet this year for reasons noted below.
July 12, 2014
Our sympathies to our Trail Boss on the passing of his father this week. Delays are not always weather-related….
June 26, 2014
Rain, rain, go away! At least for trail maintenance purposes. Farmers don’t mind it… Trail maintenance has not started for 2014 yet. Our Trail Boss reports that dirt roads might be very sticky in some areas as rains have not been consistent. Grassy sections south of St. Malo are too wet and sticky for mowing. Grrrr.. fustrating! Gravel roads are fine! Remember to check areas to be aware of below.
June 13, 2014
Trail maintenance has started along the Red River at Emerson.
June 7, 2014
Conditions are good as even the dirt roads are dry for cycling. Watch out for farm equipment as we approach the season for tackling weeds.
The maintenance program has not started yet so be aware that there might be some signs down, some taller grass and fallen trees and branches especially south of St. Malo. Also, the trail along the Red River in Emerson needs some work.