This was the fourth and final day of the hike. We woke up with a mixed feeling of excitement and wariness.We had come a long way and we should be completing our first End to End hike of the Bruce Trail. At the same time, we did not want a repeat of yesterday’s soaking wet hike. To our relief, it was not raining when we drove to Mountain Brow Blvd. in Hamilton, near the arena to park our cars.
The bus took us to Grimsby to enter the starting point of Bruce Trail that was managed by the Iroquoia club. It was relatively dark still. We heard the leaves shuffling under our feet and the sound of the water rushing down Forty Mile Creek as we climbed up Grimsby Mountain. It was quite an incline, but once we were on top, and dawn had broken through, the hike became more relaxing. The first check point at Fifty Road emerged after an uneventful 9 Km hike.
We heard occasionally the sound of traffic and trains passing, which suggested that we were close to the rail track and the main road. The narrow trail surface was very muddy, and often slippery. It started to rain too, although not as relentlessly as the day before. It demanded full concentration on where we landed our feet with each step.
The check point at New Mountain Road was right beside the rail track. We quickly devoured our sandwiches with their water and hot cider. We only had one-third of the day’s journey to go–move on!
As if nature (or the hike planners) wanted to reward us for our effort, a waterfall came in sight. We did not have any sign to tell us what its name was.
When we went further downstream and captured a better view of the landscape, this was very well the Devil’s Punch Bowl, another punch bowl waterfall like the Borer’s Fall we saw on Day 3. I was hiking near here in the summer but it was dry then.
Since this section of the trail was very popular with visitors who would come only to look at the falls, the surface was paved, and there were railings keeping people away from the precipice. Felkers Falls came into view next.
We made another turn to go around the gorge.
This creek further down probably fed into the Red Hill Creek,
which we crossed over a big metal bridge. These were the views upstream and downstream. The water level was high with all the rain in the past week.
We turned into the Red Hill Creek Side Trail uphill (left side of photo above). We came down here on Day 3 and hiked towards Dundas in the opposite direction on the Main Trail. Now we were finally out of the woods on Mountain Brow Boulevard. We climbed over the guard rails to cross the road to report to the finish check- point. We forgot that we were soaked through and proudly received our hard-earned badge that was awarded for the completion of the Bruce Trail Iroquoia Club End to End—a four-day hike of almost 130 Km.
Reference: The Bruce Trail REference Maps and Trail Guide Edition 27 (2012). Maps 5, 6 and 7.