Sunday, June 02, 2013

Trans Canada Trail, Winnipeg: Part 2-Kilkenny Drive to Bishop Grandin and Pembina Hwy

Distance: 8.03km

It's now Sunday evening and we did Part 2 of the Trans Canada Trail today. Sharm picked me up at the Appleby's parking lot at Bishop Grandin and Pembina and we went to her home.

We started out at Sharm's home and continued to our finishing point last week on Rice Road and Kilkenny Drive. We continued along Kilkenny Drive past some huge homes. Apparently, the TCT Association wants to put in some sidewalks along Kilkenny as the trial is presently on the road.  The river lots along Kilkenny are prime real estate and although the residents think the trail is a good idea, they don't want sidewalks being installed in front of their homes (found this out yesterday when I was doing an 8kk walk in Fort Richmond to celebrate Trails Day in Canada. So it is the "not in my backyard [or in this case - front yard] mentality." 
Whether the trail becomes a reality will left to be seen but right now, most of Ft. Richmond is built with no sidewalks so on some streets, you are taking your life in your hands if you walk. Kilkenny is one of those streets. It's in the university district so there is a LOT of traffic most days including weekends.  
We walked to King's park (never walked this park before yesterday and now it is the second time in two days). Quite a bit of it is still under water or quite wet and soggy from the spring thaw which happened late this year. And of course it was convenient that I did the walk yesterday because I needed a bathroom break after what seemed like two long kilometres later. When you have to go, a kilometre can seem awfully short or very looonnng! The washrooms were nice and clean although there was no soap. Fortunately I walked with some sanitizing gel - just in case.
We continued our walk along King's drive but instead of turning left at University Crescent as the map shows, we turned right and walked along Freedman Crescent to Saunderson Street, then to Dysart Road. This area around the university is quite beautiful throughout the year but the best time to enjoy it is in the Fall when the Fall colours are glorious. Some of the fields are now being planted (for agricultural experiments) so they are still looking a bit bare. The river is still very high and flowing impossibly fast. It's hypnotizing if you stare at the water long enough.
We connected to a walking path that runs along what used to be the Southwood Golf Course (now some empty space that will be developed into housing). We emerged on Darcy Drive in University Heights and followed the road to the footpath that leads to Bishop Grandin Blvd West. Our walk ended at the Appleby's Restaurant parking lot and I drove Sharm back to her house.
This was the first time wearing my Keen's Targhee hiking boots and I thought my feet were going to feel tired at the end but so far, they are feeling great. These boots are made for walking!

It's now later in the evening and I did another 9km walk outside of the little town of Carman, Manitoba. The park is called the Birch Ski Area. Here I thought Manitoba was flat as a pancake but there were some serious hilly areas that we had to hike. After almost 18kms today in my new boots (probably not a good idea to wear brand new boots to walk that much for the first time), my feet still feel great. Considering that I am still troubled by plantar fasciitis from two years ago, I am counting myself lucky that I don't have achy feet (not much more than I ordinarily have to deal with). These boots are light weight, (14 oz. each) and the toe box is wide and high enough to accommodate any swelling feet or thick socks. I love them and I love the colour (above picture). I just have to learn to lace them up for the shape of my feet - wide toe area and skinny ankles.
I used my walking poles for the whole time too so was also a vigorous workout. I could feel the calorie burn when I felt a little lightheaded after the second walk. By the time I was done, I was slightly dehydrated and hungry. Good thing I had extra water and a snack. That's what the training is good for - helping me to listen to my body and read the cues.
General comment on the trail: This part of the trial is part of the South Winnipeg Parkway which starts at the south perimeter and runs mostly along neighbourhoods along the West side of the Red River. I am not sure who has stewardship for this trail but again, the trail is not well marked so don't rely on signage along the way. Some parts of the trail are on streets with no sidewalks so be careful to walk on the side of the road facing traffic. Some of the areas are very scenic and worth taking a camera to capture the moments.

Now for a good night's sleep.
Next week: Bishop Grandin to Fort Whyte Centre.