Here is a copy of the letter sent to the VTA which they use for their (our) newsletter.
Coureurs de Bois
VTA fall newsletter submission August 22/21
With Covid retreating in our area, our hiking numbers have started to go up again.. 8-10 per usual with a high of 20 hikers.. we have had a few new members join and some prospects try out our trails
For the first time in a long time, the VTA trail in our area have all been cleared and signs refreshed.. we have had to close the existing stretch from Spanish to Kings lake road as not even atv or snowmobiles can pass through.. Our distance hiker, Steve, attempted it and had to admit defeat.. That being said, a group of 9 went from highway 108 and Kings Lake to the newly marked VTA to the golf course on Nordic Townsite road... first time n a long time..
The Red Briffet section was marked and cleared and the city of Elliot Lake provided a new picnic table for the lookout over Elliot and Quimby lakes.. Many thanks to Tom and Jim Belingham for carrying the table in and setting it all up.
There was a lot of damage from a strong thunderstorm this week, so there well may be a list of trails needing more attention..
We continue with the 4 hikes per week..
Monday is a leisure hike, botany and biology discussions often intersperse the walking. Fewer and less challenging hills are the norm with about 2 hour length..
Tuesday and Saturday are intermediate with hills, rougher terrain and 3 hour length.. proper footwear, water, snack and sturdy shoes are required...
Thursday are the more challenging trails. Up to 4 hours in length, rougher trails, steeper, longer hills, and maybe some bushwacking to skirt new beaver floods and/or downed trees... experienced hikers only..
When snow flies, we switch to snow shoes and continue as usual.. Chuck organizes ski outings on off days as well.
We have 2 sets of trailmasters who see to the maintainance of equipment, list of volunteers and their qualifications, trails that need attention and getting markers and signs ready.. and keep track of the hours spent on trail clearing..both the 200 kms of city trails as well as the VTA section.
We maintain a blog at Coureurs de Bois Voyageur Trail Outdoors Club.. with photos and brief descriptions of our hikes.. Bill Hazelton maintains it.
All of this would not be possible without the work and good will of our many members and volunteers.