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Covid-19 update


This is to update the GHTA Inc. Covid-19 policy, in light of this afternoon’s announcement, for changes to go into effect 12:01 Saturday, April 17, 2021.
As outdoor gatherings are now prohibited except for between members of the same household +/- one member of another household who lives alone, all Ganaraska hikes are now suspended.  We are told that the current Stay at Home orders will extend to at least May 20, 2020.
We will update members as the situation changes.
We hope that you are still able to get out into the woods once in a while – the wildflowers are really springing to life right now with the warm spring and rains.  Stay safe.

Carol Strickland, for Frieda Baldwin, President, GHTA Inc.

Covid-19 Update April 9, 2021

GHTA Inc. Covid-19 Update – April 9, 2021

Since April 1, 2021, only a few days have passed, but a world of difference in protocol has happened.

As of April 8 (yesterday), the Provincial Stay-at-Home orders mandate that citizens may only leave their homes for certain essential purposes, which include exercise – but on certain government websites the wording is: “exercise with persons in your own household” (or if you live alone, with one other household).   We have been in touch with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit for clarification and they confirm that persons can still gather in groups of up to 5, maintaining social distance, wearing masks when that can’t happen.

Further, the Stay-at-Home orders restrict travel to “within your community”.  We asked for clarification of “community”, and the answer still did not give us a clear definition, but we understood that at a minimum, it means “within your local health unit region”.  To minimize the risk of transmitting Covid between actual communities, we therefore continue recommending  the limiting of travel time to a trailhead  within 15-30 minutes’ driving distance. 

So, the Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association Inc. is pleased to announce that its clubs can continue to offer hikes with up to 5 persons maximum including the leader and following all our previously described social distancing Covid protocols.  

Continue safe hiking – enjoy the spring!

Frieda Baldwin, President, 

Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association, Inc.

705 245 1005

Covid-19 Protocol Update

Please be advised that in accordance with the new provincial lock-down rules announced today, as of Saturday, April 3, outdoor gatherings are restricted to 5 persons, which means our hikes can only be with a maximum of 5 persons, including the leader.  At the moment it seems that this will apply for a month, but if there is a change, we will again update our protocol.  All other pieces of the protocol apply – including maintain 2 meters’ physical distance from each other and from oncoming other hikers or bikers, wear masks when gathering or can’t maintain physical distance, don’t come on hikes if you yourself have symptoms, or have had significant contact with someone being tested for suspected Covid-infection. 

Covid-19 Update

On March 8, 2021, the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit region through which much of the Ganaraska Hiking Trail runs, will return to colour code Red again. 

As earlier in February, with that change, outdoor gatherings will have the restrictions lessened, allowing up to 25 participants. However, your Executive recommends that hike groups be restricted to 10. This allows for better adherence to social

distancing. Pre-registration is still required, including name and contact information of participants. If practical, we are also suggesting that Emergency Contact information (name of person to be contacted in the event of an emergency and their telephone number) be collected at the time of registration.

Unfortunately members living or working in grey-lockdown zone are still not allowed to join us on any group hikes.

Covid protocols are still in place – stay at home if you are feeling unwell (don’t join a group hike), wear a mask when gathering at the trailhead, or when you can’t maintain social distance, keep a distance of at least 6 feet (2 m) between yourself and others, and get 6 feet off the trail when meeting oncoming or passing hikers/bikers.

We are counting on our members to be responsible, keep travel for hiking to a minimum and stay close to home during the provincial stay-at-home order. Also, travel between Covid 19 zones must be avoided, and carpooling is not allowed. 

Fingers crossed that restrictions will continue to ease in time.

In the meantime, stay safe, and enjoy the great outdoors.

Frieda Baldwin

President, Ganaraska Hiking Trail Associaton Inc. 

705-245-1005

Frieda Baldwin
705-245-1005

Covid-19 Update

As you know the Simcoe/Muskoka District Health Unit, in which most of our trail and our clubs are located, is going into GREY/LOCKDOWN as of Monday March 1, 2021, which means that

·        Outdoor gatherings are limited to 10 people with physical distancing in place

For the Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association, this means that the maximum number of hikers in a group must be limited to 10. For clarity, the maximum number of  participants congregating at the same time in the same place is 10, and if two groups wish to go on the same route, they must assemble at least 30 minutes apart from each other.

In addition, the following measure applies for Grey–Lockdown:

·        Trips outside of the home should only be for essential reasons (… or exercise and physical activity)

Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association’s executive therefore recommends that travel to hikes be limited to within your municipality/region.  We are counting on our members to be responsible, keep travel for hiking to a minimum and stay close to home during the provincial stay-at-home order.

Travel between Covid 19 zones must be avoided, and carpooling is not allowed. 

Thank you for your cooperation. Stay safe.
Frieda BaldwinPresident, Ganaraska Hiking Trail Associaton Inc. 
705-245-1005

Covid-19 Update

Covid Update Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association Inc. – Feb. 13, 2021

On Feb. 16, 2021, the health unit regions through which the Ganaraska Hiking Trail runs, and where their clubs are located, will return to colour code Orange (Haliburton, Kawartha Lakes and Pine Ridge), or Red (Simcoe-Muskoka District Health Unit). This allows a return to group hikes! (albeit still for members only).

With that change, outdoor gatherings will have the restrictions lessened, allowing up to 25 participants. However, your Executive discussed this at a recent meeting, and recommends that hike groups be restricted to 10. This allows for better adherence to social
distancing. Pre-registration is still required, including name and contact

information of participants. If practical, we are also suggesting that Emergency Contact information (name of person to be contacted in the event of an emergency and their telephone number) be collected at the time of registration.

Covid protocols are still in place – stay at home if you are feeling unwell (don’t join a group hike), wear a mask when gathering at the trailhead, or when you can’t maintain social distance, keep a distance of at least 6 feet (2 m) between yourself and others, and get 6 feet off the trail when meeting oncoming or passing hikers/bikers.

With regard to travel – stay within your health unit region, and try to limit your distance to within 20 – 30 minutes’ drive. Unfortunately members living or working in grey-lockdown zone are still not allowed to join us on any group hikes.

Fingers crossed that restrictions will ease in time, but that is for the future. In the meantime, stay safe, and enjoy the great outdoors.

Frieda Baldwin, President,
Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association, Inc. 705-245-1005

GHTA Wilderness Club – New Executives

Greetings, Wild Things – I bring you good tidings this morning.
After intense competition, fierce & fiery speeches and lively debate last night, three new members have emerged to take on their new roles within the Executive Committee of the Wilderness Club.
Please join me in welcoming Carolyn Humphreys as Vice President, Neil Runnalls as Trail Director, and Laura Dailly as Hike Coordinator. These talented, capable and enthusiastic individuals will give us much needed bench strength and inject new energy and ideas in the running of our club. We have a list of duties, issues and concerns to manage, and manage them we shall. Please give Carolyn, Neil and Laura your full support and let’s all pitch in as/when called upon (e.g. trail maintenance work parties, and the like).
Regards & Happy Trails,
Rob “El Pretzel” Halupka

New Covid Restrictions Update

With the new Covid 19 restrictions for Ontario, which include a max of 5 for outdoor gatherings, the Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association Inc. is herewith suspending all group hikes until further notice, effective Jan. 14, 2021.  The work involved in planning multiple hikes for small groups is just too complex to organize. A lot of work goes into planning a hike, sending the announcements, pre-registrations, documenting attendees for contact tracing, etc.  In addition, we are encouraged to STAY HOME, except for essential travel and exercise. We encourage you to still go out for exercise, locally, with your household members, or a small group of hiking friends, of course observing Covid protocols.  Over the years, we have shown you the great places to hike, ski or snowshoe, many of them close to your home.  So go and enjoy what winter has to offer, but do it on your own or in small groups.
Stay safe, and happy hiking.
Frieda Baldwin, President, Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association Inc. Ph 705-245-1005

Frieda on Parking

We would like our hikers to be aware that some municipalities have parking restrictions in winter, some even till noon, to allow snowplows to clear the roads.
This may affect morning hikers, such as when parking at the entrances to the Ganaraska Hiking Trail or a local forest.  Below is a summary of the parking restrictions in some of the Simcoe County municipalities:
Tay Twp: from Nov 15 – April 1 restricted parking  3:00 am to 12:00 noon
Midland from Nov 15 – April 1 restricted parking 12:00 midnight to 7:00 am
Penetanguishene from Nov 1 – April 1 restricted parking from 1:00 am to 7:00 am
Tiny & Oro Medonte Twps: from October 15 – April 30.  If there is a heavy snowfall in either of these townships the expectation is that the roads will be clear for snow removal.  If not, you could be subject to a fine.
We also learned that in some municipalities snowplow operators can actually ticket cars that are parked illegally.
Stay safe out there!

Frieda Baldwin Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association Inc.  705-245-1005