Ponoka’s trails offer sights

In follow up to my letter two weeks ago about the trails, I’d like to give some more useful information about our trails

Dear Editor:

In follow up to my letter two weeks ago about the trails, I’d like to give some more useful information about our trails that many people may be unaware of.

We have three main trails in Ponoka. The north trail, the “ball diamond” trail, and the south trail. The south trail also has trail extensions that are a part of the Trans Canada Trail system, though they aren’t developed yet due to federal funding challenges. If you go on the south trail, (the trail to your left from the Scout Hall), there is a sharp left bend near the end of the trail. If you continue straight on the unpaved trail, the trail leads down to the railway overpass and underneath it, from there, the trail continues in a loop.

Taking the upper loop, which is the wider trail, this is a popular place to hand-feed chickadees during the winter. They will land on your fingers and eat sunflower and other bird seeds from your hand. Continuing almost to the end of this trail, there is a trail going downhill on the right. This trail leads back to the overpass and is a good place to find saskatoon berries in July and August. However, just starting down the hill on this trail, you will find the Trans Canada Trail continues on the left, and you can walk it to the Highway 2A overpass and continue on to Matejka Road.

Our trails are a great place to see nature at work. I am an amateur photographer and have taken pictures of blue herons, pelicans, osprey, swans, barn swallows, varieties of sparrows, bohemian waxwings, northern flickers, woodpeckers, American Goldfinches, ducks, Canada Geese, three types of dragonflies, (mosquito eaters), many species of butterflies, garter snakes, caterpillars, and many, many different wildflowers. And of course there are deer. We recently saw three newborn fawns and a doe on the north trail and two young fawns by the pedestrian bridge going to the IGA shopping area. People we know have also seen the odd deer and elk on the south trail area. And then let us forget the beavers and the muskrats that are frequently seen.

What you see and where you see it depends on the time of year and what part of the trail you are on but it is all there to be seen at different times of the year. All we have to do is take the time to look and to “enjoy our journey.”

We are very fortunate to have our trails plowed in the winter, which many larger communities don’t do. This makes our trails usable year-round, so we can all get out and enjoy these trails. Kudos to the Town of Ponoka for maintaining our trails.

Richard Welch