One of the perks of living in Toronto’s Riverdale neighbourhood is the easy access to the Don River Trail. It runs from Pottery Road almost all the way down to Lake Ontario. It is the Pottery Road-Riverdale Footbridge section that was for a decade the almost daily” big walk of the day” for our Icelandic Sheepdog Viggo.
While he is no longer with us, the lower Don still is and now memories of Viggo add to the experience of walking the age-old river path I re-established and maintained so that we could avoid the bike traffic on the sometimes very-busy paved main trail. It can have the vibe of a stage in the Tour de France as cyclists come zipping by!
I went down a couple of days ago – it was -10ºC and some 15 cm. of snow overnight had blanketed the neighbourhood. The 5-km. walk starts with a descent to the trail on those steps you see above. Then it is north along the path and over a small footbridge.
I approached the flimsy shelter on the banks of the river hoping that there would not be anyone inside. It would be easy enough to fall asleep in the below 0º temp and not wake up. Whew – no one there!
And no one on the main trail either as I walked north!
There is a side trail on the left side of the above photo that takes you down to the river on what I like to think of as a portage trail. Brief moments out of time – I forget that I am in the middle of an urban collection of 5 million people!
The ducks are floating placidly at Viggo’s beach – certainly more at ease than if he was here with me at this moment.
To the north of the Viaduct, a collection of late 1800s architectural pieces used to dress up Victorian-era buildings –
On my return, back on top of the Riverdale footbridge crossing the Don, I stop to check the scene on the Cabbagetown side. It has a great sliding hill and there are some people taking advantage of the snow-covered slope.
The tobogganing hill on the Cabbagetown side of the Don River valley is a great one but an even better one is on the east side just off the side of Broadview Avenue. Here is a view of the main sliding area from the bottom –
A bit to the south is another open area with a more gradual slope. That’s it in the image below! It is more of a “family with young children” spot to hang out! Parents line the top as they watch their 5-year-olds slide down the hill, no doubt worrying a little about what can happen.
See the post below for some pix and action taken – not from the bottom of the Broadview hill – but from the top.
Related Post:-10ºC and Snow in Toronto – Great For Toboganning!
Today – two days later – on my way back home from a slushy walk down in the valley, I walked up that same beginners’ slope. Thanks to the +6ºC temperature for the past day, the hill was looking very different! Patches of exposed grass and slush instead of snow.
We’ll just have to wait for the next snowfall!
Related Post: Dashing through The Snow – Viggo Has A Winter’s Blast!