Last weekend, Ori and I and some friends decided we would walk the entire 25 kilometers of the Humber River Trail, from the shores of Lake Ontario to the northern border of the City of Toronto at Steeles Avenue. It’s springtime, which is our traditional time to go walking (e.g., Camino in April 2011, Bruce Trail in April 2013).

Before we started, I plotted out the route using GIS (start at the bottom):

humber_route
Unfortunately, there was a 10k run along Yonge Street, which brought all of the TTC’s surface routes to a grinding halt. We ended up walking four kilometers west along Queen Street, hoping to catch a streetcar that never came. We couldn’t even get a taxi, so we eventually took the bus and subway to Old Mill, where we began our walk. This meant that we skipped the first four kilometers of the Humber hike, but I guess we made up for it along Queen Street. Anyway, we’ll do that last segment (from the lake shore to Bloor Street) at some point later in the summer.

It was nevertheless satisfying to have walked all the way to the northern city limits. The walk was very pleasant; the trail is paved most of the way, and it was never rocky or muddy. You could easily bike the whole thing. It grew a bit monotonous after a while, and there were very few amenities (e.g., bathrooms, water fountains, or even decent restaurants near to the trail).

Below: Starting our hike at Old Mill subway station.

Below: The Humber River as seen from the Old Mill Bridge.

Below: Starting out at Old Mill. It was the most beautiful day, and the trees were just starting to get leaves on them.

Below: Anglers under Old Mill Bridge.

Below: One of the many weirs along the lower part of the River. Mike, a stormwater-engineer-turned-planner, was full of interesting trivia about the weirs.

Below: Passing under Dundas Street.

Below: One of many “forest friends” we saw along the way. We saw all kinds of birds, snakes, and rodents – quite the colourful menagerie compared to downtown’s mangy squirrels, raccoons, and pigeons.

Below: This was what the view from the trail looked like most of the time.

Below: Crossing the river.

Below: Mike and Kaylen with the remnants of damage caused by Hurricane Hazel in 1954.

Below: Crossing beneath Highway 401.

Below: Tim celebrates completing the trail.

Below: Sighted from our bus along Steeles Avenue as we took the TTC home. We walked out of Toronto!

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