Trail Canada Newsletter
Issue 8.0 - 4 August, 2007

Just because it's August doesn't mean summer is over! There are tonnes of things going on across the country right, many continue on until the end of the year.

Nature, adventure, exploring and the outdoors... That's our theme for this issue. So if you are an outdoor enthusiast, wildlife watcher, photographer, adventurer or whatever gets you outdoors doing something see if this interests you.

In this issue:

Beyond the Skyway: Hamilton's Great Outdoors

On Canada's wild side

Tread Lightly in British Columbia's Wilderness


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Beyond the Skyway: Hamilton's Great Outdoors

By John Kernaghan

Steeltown has segued from gritty to pretty. Just look beyond the heights of the Skyway Bridge for a wealth of eco-trails and conservation areas offering biking, birding, boating and more.

The view of Hamilton most widely thought to represent the city is the panorama from the Skyway Bridge as it passes over Burlington Bay. And the stark majesty of that industrial front yard, with its steel mills and attendant industry, scarcely suggests an outdoor mecca.

It is in fact a narrow look. Sometime over the past two decades, Hamilton went from gritty to pretty. You just can't see it as you hurtle across the heights of the bridge.

It's there, though, in a very high ratio of conservation areas and recreational lands that offer hiking, biking, in-line skating, swimming, boating, birding and fishing, as well as many winter sports opportunities. And Hamilton may just be Canada's capital of waterfalls, with 34 documented falls amongst the many streams that tumble down the Niagara Escarpment.

"There's no chart comparing percentages of recreational land for cities in Canada, but we believe we rank very high," says Garnet Cowsill of the Hamilton Conservation Authority (HCA). "We believe we compare very favourably with other cities in terms of open space." In and around Hamilton, some 6,353 hectares of publicly owned lands, or 14 per cent of a watershed area with a land component of 280 square kilometres, are devoted to an array of recreational activities.


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On Canada's wild side

It doesn't matter if you live in a big city or out on the Arctic tundra, wildlife is everywhere. We've created a special section dedicate to Canada's wildlife and nature.

From squirrels and ducks you find in parks across Canada, to bears and cougars in the remote regions.

Our guide includes:

- Photos of wildlife
- Canadian Animal Factfiles
- Wildlife watching tips
- Flora and Habitats

Check it out! You might be surprised what you can see in your local park or short drive out of the city.

Check out our Canadian Wildlife Special

Top Photo

Great Horned Owl

More photos like this...

Tread Lightly in British Columbia's Wilderness

by Jack Christie, Hello BC

Whether its ancient forests or spirit bears, wild rivers or alpine meadows, visitors journey to British Columbia for unique wilderness experiences that they just can ít find at home. What they discover is far more than simply the overwhelming beauty of the landscape. They also encounter individuals with a keen sense of place.

It takes a savvy traveller to research and, just as importantly, organize self-guided adventure trips. Instead, most of us place our trust in local wilderness tourism operators to show us hidden gems. What we gain in return are the tangible rewards of meeting individuals who have invested their lives in introducing others to the multitude of natural wonders, both on land and sea, found here in the Pacific Northwest.

Much like the priesthood, wilderness tourism is not just a career, itís a calling. Which is why the passion for environmental stewardship and wilderness preservation is viscerally contagious. Take a guided eco-adventure and youíll not only have the experience of a lifetime, youíll find that youíve made friends for life as well.

Therein lies the secret of success: once having established a bond with our hosts, we frequently return year after year to renew acquaintances. Beyond simply spreading word of mouth, we bring our family and friends along with us as well. After all, when weíve found a slice of heaven, most of us instinctively want to share it with those we hold most dear, which is exactly the impulse that drew wilderness tourism operators to set up shop in the first place.

The following is a sample of British Columbia wilderness tour operators not only recognized for their environmental stewardship work but just as importantly for their ability to share their vision with others.


That's all for now!

See you on the trail,

James Shearer
Trail Canada Editor

Canada's most popular independent travel guide

Part of the Trail Canada Travel Network

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