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thorold-north-canals-trail-guide

A lock on the old Welland Canal

 



TRAIL GUIDE

001 - 002 | 1.25 kmFrom the Decew House parking lot go left on the road across the bridge and you will see the trail on the left side of the road heading into the woods beside Lake Moodie. The trail  passes through thorny shrubs and crosses a few wooden bridges over wet areas. Past the bridge there is an obscured white Bruce Trail marker on a tree ahead indicating the trail goes off to the right through the brush. The trail comes out to St. Davids Road overlooking the parking lot at Brock University (002). Here the trail goes to the left along the road.

002 - 003 | 2.3 kmSt Davids Road curves right to become Power House Dam Road 3. At the soccer fields on the right the trail goes back into the woods on the left of the road. The trail curves right into a wire fence topped with barbed wire (003).

003 - 004 | 3.3 kmThe path comes out to an open area with the Ontario Power Generation Plant off to one side with a Porta-John and the trail swings right crossing a gravel road (Power House Dam 3). A sign indicates this is the property of Brock University and the trail moves ahead back into a brush strewn area and enters an area with larger trees. The Bruce Trail now heads downhill and part way down there is an intersection (004) with the main trail going off to the right and the blue marker for a side trail goes off to the left.

004 - 005 | 6.0 kmFollow the blue side trail left as it continues down the hill. You can see a road straight ahead. The bush consist of large sugar maples and crosses a wooden bridge over a semi-dry creek and begins to climb again between two roads. The blue trail descends and passes a large black walnut tree before crossing wooden planks over a small creek and then climbs up again to arrive at the road where the trail goes downhill to the right along the gravel road (Power House Dam Road 2). Near the bottom of the gravel road just before the gate the trail goes left back into the woods before emerging at a paved road (Power House Dam Road 1).
Turn left and walk along the road to the Ontario Power Generation Niagara Plant Group Asset Management area. Walk across the lawn past the yellow power generation building where you will see a blue marker on a tree ahead and you will see the “Twelve Trail” path through the weeds as it heads downhill towards the creek. The trail follows Twelve Mile Creek before arriving at an open area where there is a metal sided pedestrian bridge over the creek as well as a large overhead bridge carrying Glendale Avenue across Twelve Mile Creek. The trail enters the parking lot by way of a gravel road to the right where you continue following the blue markers (005).

005 - 006 | 8.9 kmThis Twelve Trail continues straight ahead along the banks of the creek (which deep ruts which can make for a muddy path in wet weather) before passing under a rail overpass. Near Hwy 406 ahead the trail leaves the creek banks and heads right and uphill into the woods. The trail comes out to a gravel path following the fence under Westchester Crescent and up the incline near Hwy 406. Walk along the fence and you will see the yellow blaze marker marking the beginning of the Merritt Trail (006).

006 - 007 | 11.6 kmThe gravel trail parallels Hwy 406 along a grassy field. Coming up the hill you make a u-turn at the stop lights and head across the bridge on Geneva St. Cross the street at the corner of Race St & Geneva St and continue straight ahead along Geneva until you come to Gale Crescent. Turn right here following the yellow markers. Up ahead is a Variety store where you can stop for an ice cream bar. Turn right on Riordon and you will see a sign for the Merritt Trail just before descending the steps and the slope down. Follow the Merritt Trail which does a U-turn at the bottom of the slope and follows along the banks of the First Welland Canal. Soon you can view what is left of nearby Lock 6 of the old canal. Coming up a hill and arriving at a road, turn left on Collier Street and walk down and cross busy Westchester Crescent ahead. Turn left on Westchester Crescent and walk slightly downhill. Watch for the yellow blaze indicating to go to your right back into the woods (007).

007 - 008 | 13.1 kmThe trail crosses over a wooden plank bridge with rusty iron railings and swings slightly to the right. To the left you can see the stone wall blocks of the Second Welland Canal. Following along the Merritt Trail you will pass a number of locks of the old Second Welland Canal which now resemble a series of waterfalls as the lock gates have been removed. A series of walkways crossing over the canals gives you a good view of the old locks -or at least what is left of them. The trail comes up to a Moffatt St passing a wooden post that signifies the “Captain Scott Misener” section of the trail (008).

008 - 009 | 15.4 kmCross Disher St before heading back downhill along the old canal. Soon after crossing the railway tracks (caution), the trail arrives at busy Glendale Ave. Turn right along Glendale, cross Glendale at the traffic lights and walk along Glendale under Hwy 406 to Tremont Ave (009) at the Esso Station and nearby Tim Horton’s.

009 - 010 | 16.3 kmTurn left on Tremont and follow it to the end of the Tremont cul-de-sac where you will see a red Brock University land reserve sign (010).

010 - 011 | 18.0 kmEnter the woods and follow to the edge of the ravine. Instead of following the white Bruce Trail markers downhill past the bicycle jump ramps, stay along the top edge of the ravine. At the Y-intersection stay right along the ravine edge. This path soon joins the main Bruce Trail saving you some energy. The trail comes out to a gravel road opening and turns left along the gravel road for a bit before making a U-turn back into the woods along the Main Bruce Trail passing a sign indicating “Meadow” and “Bruce Trail”. The trail descends a slope, crosses Glenridge Ave and heads uphill along this road. Across from the Nursing Building near the top of the hill, the route leaves Glenridge Ave and heads to the right back into the woods (011).

011 - 004 | 19.4 kmThe trail leaves the woods and climbs a hill to enter the Brock University grounds passing a number of buildings. Passing Brock University, the path heads to the right back into the woods and descends to lower trails near the ravine edge. Carefully watch for the point where the main trail meets the blue side trail that you passed earlier in the hike (004).

004 - 003 | 20.3 kmFollow the main Bruce Trail uphill and arrive back at the end of the wire fence (003).

003 - 002 | 21.4 kmContinue along the trail watching for the point where you leave St Davids Road and head to the right back into the woods (002).

002 - 001 | 22.6 kmSoon you will arrive back at Decew Road. Cross the bridge to the parking lot where the hike began (001).
Enjoy the hike and the day!

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