We looked forward to our first walk and picnic at Bonshaw this year. It is one of our favourite walking areas and we like to visit it at various times from spring through fall. We hadn’t been there since post tropical storm Fiona blew through late last September and we knew the area had been damaged, but we were not prepared for the devastation.
The playground area is deceptive. There is little visible damage around the open space and equipment in that area and one would think all is well at Bonshaw.
One has to look closely along the perimeter to notice tree stumps. Entry to the main trail breaks the illusion quickly however.
My husband and I were quiet for a long time as we walked the main trail, taking in the sight before us. An area which once had shade from the canopy even before the leaves come out, looked as it it had been clear cut. Words escaped us.
On both sides of the trail, it was the same, an occasional tree survived but most had not. Some trees now make lean-tos with the survivors, prevented from falling by the more stalwart individuals. Other trees took the root systems with them as they toppled, making pancakes of earth and roots which stand vertically now taller than we are.
People had worked hard to open these trails again, as trees across paths had been cut and left along the margins. It will be generations before this area returns to its former glory. Autumn certainly won’t be the same with the canopy destroyed as it is.
I am undergoing physiotherapy for my left arm and shoulder, injured when I fell off my bike. I am doing better this week but it is slow going. My husband suggested I have a new electric three wheeler however I am not ready to give up the two wheels yet. Now, I realize aging is a reverse of childhood when one is eager to go from three wheels to two. Reluctance is the dominant feeling these days though safety will win the day.
Finally this week, the leaves are almost out on the trees and blooms are out on the trails. Overhead, the blooms and blue sky remind us to enjoy what is!