September 29, 2013: Wildlife Safari at Mount Nemo

There’s nothing as energizing as a long hike on a clear fall day!  We set out from Signal Hill towards our goal of Mount Nemo.  All the ladies were feeling frisky and we even had two new hikers in our group.  We knew it was going to be an exceptional day!

This section of trail contains the highest concentration of stiles we have seen so far.  Somewhere there is a stile manufacturer who is driving a Lamborghini, thanks to all the stiles in this section .   The Limestone Ladies take their stiles very seriously and have developed some signature stile moves.

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Stylin’ on the stile!

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Blowing a kiss to her fans.

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Stile seductress!

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Even our new hiker caught on with some stile-y moves of her own!

But there is one in every crowd – the person who hears the different drum and chooses the untrodden path.  Or in this case, goes under the stile:

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Conscientious objector!

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Here are the lovely ladies looking up at… yet another stile!

We had been having a conversation about how much we love the Bruce Trail scenery, but how we would enjoy seeing a few animals along the way.  So far, any wildlife we’ve seen has been on a leash!  It was an innocent conversation.  We didn’t realize that a number of fierce wild animals had escaped from a nearby zoo…..

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The first unusual encounter was this sloth hanging from a trail-side branch. Definitely not a squirrel!

A series of loud squawks had us swiveling our heads to see where they came from.  We located this large, colourful bird on a branch overlooking the trail.

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A toucan on the Bruce Trail???

By now we knew that this was no ordinary Sunday afternoon hike.  Strange forces were at work in the forest.  We were surrounded by growling and prowling and snarling.  Were we to become prey for these fierce beasts?

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A pair of adult tigers, right in the middle of the trail!

We prepared to take on the two tigers.  Swiss army knives were drawn.   Then we realized that there was a herd of them!

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Marauding herd of wild beasts!

Fortunately we were able to scare them off and we continued our hike through the southern Ontario autumn countryside.

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A dramatic, dying oak.

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Fall sunflowers

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Fisher’s pond

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Nature’s palette of colours

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The sweet scent of fall in the air

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Wild apples! Tart and sweet at the same time.

We had allowed ourselves to be lulled into a false sense of security, believing the tigers to be behind us.  All of a sudden, there was fierce snarling and a big cat fight erupted right in front of us.  It was terrifying

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Lioness meets tigress.

We stopped for lunch and the beasts smelled our food and infiltrated the picnic.

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Making friends with the animals.

The trail had been following Walker’s Line for several kilometres but now it headed back into the bush and began to get rugged again.

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A staircase – how civilized!

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You become adept at scrambling over rocks after a few sections of the Trail!

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These mossy rocks looked like the unwashed feet of giants.

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Up another rocky scramble!

We reached the summit of Mount Nemo and were treated to some vistas of the Ontario countryside.

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Looking out towards Milton

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A giraffe enjoying the view from Mount Nemo. Great day for wildlife!

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A vista near the end of the hike.

As we neared the end of our beautiful day together, I noticed this cedar growing from the rock at the top of Mount Nemo.

I was struck by how many lessons we can learn from this tenacious tree:  Hold on tight to the things that are important to you.  Never give up, even against formidable odds.  Remember that small progress is still progress and you must be patient.  Keep reaching for the sun and shake off the snow.

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You really can squeeze life out of a stone.

May we all be like the hardy cedar and stay strong and true until our next hike.  See you in October!

About idreamoftobermory

Hiker, kayaker, canoeist, cross-country skier, cyclist, wanderer, adventurer.
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