GREYSTONE TRAILS – Local full-time residents (since 2005), Tony and Sue Crutcher, would like to extend a personal invitation to all Members of the Island View Ratepayers Association to enjoy and explore our private 430+ acre managed forest/wildlife reserve (Lots 1, 2 and 3 Georgian Range Road) with your family and friends. Over 16km of trails now encompass almost the entire property providing hiking, bird watching, wildlife viewing opportunities and enjoyment for everyone who chooses to take the time to explore.
The trails, which are about 8 to 10 feet wide, are a perfect place to exercise your canine companion(s) as well. You will traverse through 3 distinct micro-environments when you explore the entire property (lake, forest and plateau) each with its own flora and fauna.
Six ponds (Beaver, Escarpment East & West, Long, Creek and Corral) and five rest areas (with privies) located along the Main Loop are wonderful places to stop, rest and enjoy the beauty that surrounds you. Depending on the time of day, you might spot the recently-returned beavers working on their dam at Beaver Pond, a couple of very large herons feeding on the many frogs, an eagle, bobolink, praying mantis, goldfinch, monarch butterflies, deer, rabbits, wild turkeys or other surprises.
You are welcome to post yours there as well – and, if you take a photo you’d like to share, please do! A dedicated website has been created so information is accessible to everyone www.GreystoneTrails.com.
One recent spring, we spotted over 50 different birds on Greystones properties. Three BPBO (Bruce Peninsula Bird Observatory) Annual General Meetings have been held at Greystone Retreat. These included hikes on our property where, in 1km and less than 1 hour, up to 36 species were spotted despite cold, wet weather in April. We are creating an ongoing list at www.GreystoneTrails.com — how many of them did you see?
Challenge yourself to see if you can locate the original homestead and bank barn foundation ruins near the “Homestead Rest Area” … they’re not far off the trail. HINT: the trail names will help a lot 🙂
TRAIL MAPS are available at the trailhead located at the PUBLIC PARKING AREA (across from 504785 Grey Rd 1) so you can help yourself to a map whenever you hike. There is a legend in the lower right corner of the map that gives the length of each trail and a reminder, that should you lose your way, to remember the boating rule “Red Right Returning”. We have placed yellow markers with red reflectors at each trail intersection and on the RIGHT SIDE of each trail to guide you back to our Conservatory. These markers may not be the shortest route, but they will be the simplest to return to the top of the hill so you can reorient yourself — as long as you keep them on your right-hand side as you walk.
Over the winter of 2015/16 we created signs for the trails, with several volunteers helping us paint them. Over 100 signs were installed the spring of 2016 to help direct hikers on the trails.
In the summer, all on-site trails are mowed on a weekly basis, weather permitting.
TRAIL CONDITIONS are posted on our facebook page (spring and fall can be very wet and some trails are closed — particularly Inner Loop East) or on our new website www.GreystoneTrails.com
Of course, you are always welcome to contact Tony or Sue via email at: GreystoneRetreat@bell.net or call: 519-378-1503 with any questions.
Please let us know if you spot anything on the trail that needs our attention (such as fallen trees or limbs, trail conditions not listed on facebook, outhouse/privy attention, etc.), if you have any suggestions or if you would like to volunteer to help with maintenance/upkeep occasionally.
Many upgrades are ‘in the works’ … the best place to learn more at this time is on our main website.
NEW TRAIL ENTRANCE IS OPEN
It is located across from 504785 Grey Rd 1, signed “Greystone Trails … Public Access” and has plenty of parking for 6-8 vehicles. There are maps at the Trailhead Entrance for your convenience.
An ALTERNATE ENTRANCE is located opposite 504747 Grey Rd 1. It is signed as “Greystone Trails” and has room for 1-2 cars.
NEW TRAIL EXTENSION
Scrub Trail is now complete — stones and stumps have been removed; it is now being mowed regularly. Scrub Trail connects Inner Loop West to Outer Loop North.
Oak North Trail was cut this summer (2015) — with many thanks to Gary and JoAnn for their hard work. It is a short (just under .5km) trail beginning approximately half-way along Oak Trail and connecting to Outer Loop East at the intersection of Inner Loop South.
TRAIL MAPS are available at both entrances to the trails. There will also be a printable PDF on our main website in the near future.
TRAIL ACCESS is free to our neighbours … it is our way of giving back to community. Please help us keep the trails in prime condition by reporting any issues and, as you walk, remove any small debris you come across. Remember to “poop and scoop” and to “take only memories; leave only footprints”.
We’re often hiking and maintaining the trails – so we’ll see you out there!
NO HUNTING | NO HORSES
** NO MOTORIZED VEHICLES **
Except snowmobiles connecting to OSFA trails
(when gates are open and conditions allow).
Snowmobiles are only allowed on Cattle Trail entrance to Inner Loop West (Trails #1, 12, #17) to get off-site.
— PROPERTY ACCESS AND USE OF TRAILS IS AT YOUR OWN RISK —