Hello members of Sarnia Photographic Club,
Saturday February 18, 2017 looks like a great day for an outing! My weather network app says sunny and 12 celcius.
I recently found out about an abandoned house which is very photo worthy on Talbot Trail, about an hour from Sarnia. It would be great if we could take photos there in the morning and then go to Rondeau Provincial Park as it is very close to it.
We will meet at 7:30am at Food Basics on Indian Road. If you need a ride let me know we will have room for 3 more people. And if you can give a ride, let me know also.
We will drive to the Abandoned house. We should get there by around 8:30 or a little after. We will take photos for as long as we like. It is all farmland there so we may venture to see if there are any other photo ops near there. At around 10:30am, we can drive towards Rondeau. We will be right by the water, just after Morpeth.
We can take some photos there and make our way to Rondeau Provincial Park. There is an eatery called Rondeau Joe's Pub just before the park entrance. We will have lunch there and then go into the park. Please register as soon as you can so I can have the numbers for lunch so that I can reserve a table for us. I am not sure if the free park pass includes Rondeau. I will check but if it doesn't here is a link to the fees for day use. If it does include Rondeau, then we can go in for free as we have a free pass in the car.
Rondeau is a premiere birding destination providing bird watchers with a world-class experience. 334 species of birds have been recorded in the park and 134 of these have been recorded breeding. Some, like the endangered Prothonotary Warbler, are found in only a few places in Canada.
The Rondeau peninsula is an important stopover for migrating passerines (known as perching or sometimes song birds) and waterfowl in the spring and fall. During these times the park is filled with numerous species of warblers, thrushes, flycatchers and other song birds. Rondeau Bay hosts thousands of ducks and Tundra Swans in the spring and fall.
Rarities including Townsend’s Solitaire, Yellow-throated Warbler, Blue Grosbeak and Painted Bunting often show up on the peninsula during migration.
We can see what birds and trees we can find in these trails below.
Spice Bush Trail - 1.5km loop, 1 hour, easy
The Spicebush Trail winds through a southern hardwood forest of old growth Tulip Tree, American Beech, and maple. In spring, the forest floor is carpeted in wildflowers making the trail a botanists delight. The trail explores the transition between Carolinian forest and marsh and is an excellent site for bird watching.
Black Oak Trail: 1.4 km loop, 1 hour, easy
The Black Oak Trail winds through a narrow strip of Pine-Oak Savanna. Several meadows along the trail bloom with brilliant Wood Lily, Wild Columbine, and Woodland Sunflower. This is an excellent trail for bird watching.
Tulip Tree Trail – 1.2 km loop, 1 hour, easy
This barrier-free trail travels through a mature Carolinian forest with the majority of the trail being boardwalk for handicap accessibility. Hikers will have an opportunity to see examples of Carolinian trees that are rare in Ontario such tulip trees, sassafras, and Shagbark Hickory. During May, this is also the best trail to see the endangered Prothonotary Warbler. (An all-terrain wheelchair is available for use from the Visitor Centre)
After the Rondeau Park, we can drive back to the abandoned house, and (depending on whether there is a sun out or not ) stop for some golden light photos of the house for another half hour. It always looks different depending on the light.
We will then drive back home and should be home by around 6pm latest.
Looking forward to seeing you!