Discovering Ottawa: Jack Pine Trail

chickadeeWe didn’t bring the recommended seeds, and wished we had the moment we stepped onto the Jack Pine Trail.  In Nepean, Ontario, just outside Ottawa, this trail is a short but very worthwhile walk.   Dogs are not permitted, which I found odd at first, but soon realized is part of the magic.

Nuthatch 2-2Magical is the best way to describe this little oasis.   Chickadees, and nuthatches welcomed our approach, flitting about our heads, landing on the path before us, and one even settling on Ric’s offered hand.

Not even my walker threw them off.  One little nuthatch, in particular, kept close to me, as if he’d claimed me as his human.

Blue jay profileBlue jays watched from nearby trees, chattering merrily – none of the usual cries of warning.

Chipmunks and red squirrels also skipped about, and I suddenly felt like Snow White, cooing and coaxing my newfound companions.

See why we wished we’d brought the seed?  Our little friends were looking for a gift, but nevertheless, they accompanied us along, delighting me each step of the way.

red squirrel 2A friend had told us about this place, and recounted many encounters, not just with the birds but also with deer.   Chippy

“Sit for a while, and they will come,” she advised.

But the other thing I forgot was mosquito repellant, and the buzz around my ears warned me that I was providing a feast for the pests.  I kept moving.

As you can see from the photos, the foliage is thick, and the many trees meant several roots, along with rocks, marked the trail.  We opted for the short loop for this reason, but I would love to come back again, better prepared.

If you are in the area and can only do one thing, check out the Jack Pine Trail.

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Permission to write, paint, and imagine are the gifts I gave myself when chronic illness hit - a fair exchange: being for doing. Relevance is an attitude. Humour essential.

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