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Posts Tagged ‘Area of Natural and Scientific Interest’

I briefly mentioned the Fleetwood Creek Natural Area last month as part of the overview on Kawartha Conservation but it deserves a more in-depth overview.

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Fleetwood Creek Natural Area is located within the Oak Ridges Moraine, an area characterized by steep valleys, sandy soil and many cold water streams. These streams form the headwaters of Fleetwood Creek, a major watercourse within the City of Kawartha Lakes and the Kawartha Region watershed.

The area is comprised of a 900-acre (380-hectare) tract of land managed by Kawartha Conservation for the Ontario Heritage Trust.

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You will find lowland forests, hardwood bush, meadows and steep valleys. There are over 250 kinds of plants and 44 types of birds. Wild turkeys were reintroduced into the region during the 1980s.

If you are a geological buff, this area has a variety of geological formations caused by the past glacial period including:

  • Kames – steep-sided mounds of sand and gravel deposited by a melting ice sheet.
  • Kettles – depressions in a glacial outwash drift made by the melting of a detached mass of glacial ice that became wholly or partly buried.
  • Eskers – a long ridge of gravel and other sediment, typically having a winding course, deposited by meltwater from a retreating glacier or ice sheet.
  • Ice-contact ridges – a ridge produced on floating ice by buckling or crushing under pressure of wind or ice.

A large part of the Fleetwood Creek property is designated as a Provincially Significant Earth and Life Science Area of Natural and Scientific Interest (ANSI). Such a long name for a significant piece of our environment! An ANSI is an official designation by the provincial Government of Ontario applied to neighbouring geographical regions within the province that have geological or ecological features which are significantly representative – and this is all within an easy drive if you live in Bethany.

As a result of the delicate nature of the area, visitors are asked to stay on the trails so that the most environmentally sensitive sections of the property are protected.

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Dogtooth  Violets

The Trails

 

  • The Valley Trail is a 2.2 km loop which includes an observation platform offering a spectacular view of the surrounding land, as well as the opportunity to travel down into the valley (if you are more adventuresome.)
  • The Forest Trail is divided into two branches.
  • The West branch, a 3 km loop, consists of a twisting path on a gradual slope leading through open meadows and forests of giant beech, maple, and hemlock trees.
  • The East trail, a 3 km loop, leads through a dense cedar forest, then climbs up the valley slope. The trail continues through an open meadow, then winds back through the forest to the parking area.

Address and Directions

902 Ballyduff Road, Kawartha Lakes, ON

From Highway 35, turn east onto Ballyduff Road for 2.9 km

Destination is on the right at 902 Ballyduff Road, Kawartha Lakes, ON

Fleetwood Creek Natural Area is open May to October from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

For more information visit the website at http://kawarthaconservation.com/conservation-areas/fleetwood-creek-natural-area

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