Thursday 21 July 2016

Point Pelee National Park, Leamington, ON

I spent a couple hours this afternoon at Point Pelee National Park.

Point Pelee consists of a peninsula of land, mainly of marsh and woodland habitats, that tapers to a sharp point as it extends into Lake Erie.  It is about 7km long by 4.5km wide at its northern base. Point Pelee was established in 1918 and was the first national park in Canada to be established for conservation.

Because of its location at the crossroads of two major migration flyways, about 350 different species of migratory birds have been recorded in the park and more than 100 species stay there for breeding.  The park contains more than 750 native plant species.

There are lots of cycling and hiking trails (ranging from 0.5km and up), beaches, canoe rentals, etc.  There's lot of space for everyone and lots to do!

There is a visitor centre if you need information.

I started with the Shuster Trail (0.5km) each way.

The Shuster Trail is the straight one at the top right

It was a lovely walk through the woods.

There's the east beach at the end of the trail
It was hot and humid (29C but felt like 32C)
and I couldn't resist walking into the water to cool off
Then I headed back to the trail

I wanted to go to the tip (it's the most southern point of mainland Canada) but was too late to take the shuttle there and back (it's about 2.5km each way).  At 4pm, they open the gate and allow cars to drive there so that's what I did.

There's Pelee Island off in the distance
There was a nice breeze by the water
There's the tip!

I stopped in to check out the DeLaurier Homestead.

DeLaurier House is a two-storey, gable-roofed structure, which incorporates two attached log houses. The dwelling is clad in board and batten siding and the shingled roof exhibits two roof pitches with one brick chimney. Windows and doors are asymmetrically arranged on the walls of the house.

DeLaurier House is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental value. 

It is associated with the early settlement of the Point Pelee area. It illustrates the life and times of a small French-Canadian community outside Québec and the agricultural activity on Point Pelee between 1850 and 1966. The reclamation of marshland led to Point Pelee becoming one of Canada’s finest agricultural areas in the latter half of the 19th century. The house is also associated with its builder, Oliver DeLaurier, and with his descendants. The house was used as a neighbourhood tavern for local parties and for community dances. In addition, the house is the oldest remaining structure and illustrates the development of export-oriented farming at Point Pelee during the late 19th century. It is now the interpretive center for the Point Pelee National Park.

There were bunnies in the yard
This guy was so tiny!
The barn
The house

After that, I went to the Marsh Boardwalk.

The views from the top of the tower were so nice.

The hike is a 1km loop.

This guy kept swooping down at me

It's a fabulous park!  I wish I'd had more time to spend there.


Swordsman said...

Great pictures. Wish I had been there with you!

Teena in Toronto said...

Me too!

Teresa said...

What a beautiful place. Looks like you had it all to yourself.