On a snowy February day in Toronto, I’m feeling inadequate standing at the podium in a high-school auditorium—not because of the 500 people in the audience, but for one larger than life man in the front row. Retired physicist George Luste founded theWilderness Canoe Symposium 30 years ago as a way for paddlers to share stories of their northern expeditions and to inspire new trips. The event has the feel of a latter-day Beaver Club—the exclusive gang of fur-traders who explored and mapped Canada in the 18th and 19th century and gathered to chat about it in wintery Montreal.
Following in the paddle strokes of explorers David Thompson, Alexander Mackenzie and Samuel Hearne, Luste spent 55 summers traveling Canada’s far north. He immigrated to Canada from Latvia in 1948 and made his first canoe trip in 1963, a solo journey on Ontario’s Abitibi River. He completed a Ph. D. at Johns Hopkins University before returning to Canada in 1971 for a professorship at the University of Toronto.
Canoeing was Luste’s passion. He paddled Canada’s iconic wilderness rivers—the Missinaibi, Rupert, Eastmain, Kazan, Nahanni, Coppermine, Stikine, and George—often in the company of his wife, Linda, and their children. What’s more, he was part of a group that made the first complete descent of the Dubawnt River in the Canadian barrenlands, pioneered many other multi-watershed routes, and was amongst the last to paddle Labrador’s Grand River before a massive hydroelectric project was completed at Churchill Falls.
Full Article – https://mail.google.com/mail/ca/u/0/#search/googlealerts-noreply%40google.com/14c829842c123947
Ontario Investing $25 Million in Cycling Infrastructure
Province Supports Safe, Active Transportation
As part of Ontario’s 20-year #CycleON strategy, the province is moving forward with a $25-million investment over three years to create a more cycling-friendly future for the province.
This includes $15 million for cycling routes that provide key connections and linkages on provincial highways, such as paved highway shoulders and barriers on bridges that separate cyclists from vehicles. Early proposals include:
- Highway 33 west of Kingston (part of the Waterfront Trail)
- Highway 137 structure over the 1000 Island Parkway (part of the Waterfront Trail)
- Highway 6 on Manitoulin Island and south of Highway 17 at Espanola (part of the Georgian Bay Cycling Route)
- Highway 17B and Highway 17 between Sault Ste. Marie and Espanola (part of the Lake Huron North Channel Cycling Route)
The province has also dedicated $10 million to the Ontario Municipal Cycling Infrastructure Program to help municipalities:
- Expand their local cycling routes
- Connect with provincial cycling routes
- Launch pilot projects to make cycling improvements
Consultations on the municipal program have concluded and the launch is on track for spring 2015. Work is also underway to identify a provincewide network of cycling routes in collaboration with a broad range of cycling stakeholders.
Investing in infrastructure is part of the government’s economic plan for Ontario. The four part plan is building Ontario up by investing in people’s talents and skills, building new public infrastructure like roads and transit, creating a dynamic, supportive environment where business thrives, and building a secure savings plan so everyone can afford to retire.
- According to the National Trauma Registry, Ontario has the second-lowest cycling injury rate of all Canadian provinces.
- Ontario has enhanced the Driver’s Handbook to include information about sharing the road safely with cyclists.
- Ontario’s public education efforts to promote cycling safety include Cycling Skills, Young Cyclist’s Guide, a partnership with TVOKids targeting children and parents and support for stakeholders to deliver public education resources at the community, regional and provincial level.
- According to the Canadian Medical Association, a 10 per cent increase in physical activity could reduce direct health-care expenditures by $150 million a year.
“We know that working with our partners is key to creating a more cycling-friendly Ontario. We’ll continue to engage municipalities, road users, businesses, advocacy groups and non-governmental organizations to make sure we get it right.”
“Cycling helps to build more healthy, active and prosperous communities as it generates a wide range of health, economic, environmental, social and other benefits.”
First Nations want management control of Ogoki Forest
Aroland Chief Sonny Gagnon, Chief Elizabeth Atlookan and Marten Falls Interim Chief Bruce Achneepineskum sign Ogoki Forest unity agreement.
The three First Nations say they will play “a leading role in forest governance” toward obtaining a long-term forest license for the Ogoki Forest Management Unit.
The communities want take control of forest management planning, harvesting, road construction, silviculture, environmental monitoring, reporting and also establish forest-based First Nations business ventures.
Located 250 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay, the Ogoki Forest is considered part of the traditional land of the communities in providing a place to hunt, fish, trap, and provide medicine.
Link to full article – http://www.northernontariobusiness.com/Industry-News/aboriginal-businesses/2015/03/First-Nations-want-management-control-of-Ogoki-Forest.aspx
The trapper feels he took ‘reasonable precautions’ to protect the public. Well, I strongly disagree.
Last December, a friend and I were walking along a public snowmobile trail on Crown Land just north of Peterborough, Ont., with my two yellow labs. My dog George was killed that day by a baited conibear trap set beside the trail.
Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF), through a local Conservation Officer, has investigated the death and informed us by telephone that the investigation is closed; the trapper broke no laws.
I have to ask: How can it be completely legal to put a lethal, baited trap right on a public trail? It was bad enough with my pet. What if I’d been walking with a child?
Link to full article – http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/valerie-strain/baited-trap-dog_b_6961554.html
MTO blinks first, provides funds for critical culvert fix
ESPANOLA—Great news arrived recently concerning funding for the 40-year-old Black Creek culvert on Highway 6 on the outskirts of the Town of Espanola. The culvert is on a section of the connecting link that is Manitoulin Island’s vital year-round link to Highway 17 and the world beyond.
According to a recent announcement from the Ontario Community Infrastructure Fund (OCIF) concerning the fund’s application-based component, the Town of Espanola will receive up to $1,316,931 toward the replacement of the Black Creek Culvert.
“We have budgeted 1,466,900 for this project with an additional $150,000 for the adjacent boardwalk known as the Al Secord Fitness Trail,” confirmed Espanola CAO Cynthia Townsend, who added that the town was hoping to finalize the tenders for the addition shortly.
Outdoor gala brings ‘fire and ice’ to Sudbury’s Ramsey Lake
‘This is something in the spirit of northern Ontario, the spirit of Sudbury’
CBC News Posted: Mar 05, 2015 8:05 AM ET Last Updated: Mar 05, 2015 8:05 AM ET
Sudbury’s Ramsey Lake will be transformed into a winter spectacle this weekend to raise funds for the YWCA Genevra House women’s shelter.
The inaugural Fire and Ice Outdoor Gala will take place near Science North and will feature figure skaters, musicians, horses, an ice bar, and a vintage snowmobile show.
If I wasn’t writing this, I’d be in the bush
Soon, a smallmouth bass inhaled the bait and bent the fishing rod. A moment later I was holding the fish up with a big smile on my face. I didn’t realize it then, but the real catch of that day was me.
I was instantly enthralled with fishing and it is also the exact moment my love for everything outdoors began.