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The Hollows Trail Review
UPDATE October 19 2019 – The trails are all clear again, and easy walking
UPDATE May 8, 2018 – Just returned from this loop after picking fiddleheads at the Northern end of Rangers Hollow. There are alot of blowdowns on both hollows trails. Nothing that can’t be walked around or crawled under though.
I’ve been looking forward to writing this review for some time now. My problem has been how to approach it. There are actually two trails that, with a bit of gravel road walking, provide a loop. Loop walks are always preferred even with a bit of roadway. Of course, you could treat either as a separate return trail if you wish.
I like these two because neither is listed on any published trail guide. No club, nor authority claims are on them. The entrances are both fairly well hidden so I’ll have to give you very precise location directions. Once found, they’re both very clear and easy to follow. Il’l admit there’s not much to interest a forager, a botanist, an entomologist, nor even a mycologist. They’re just a calming, relaxing walk through a wooded and meadowed trail between County Rds. An added bonus is the silence. You’re below road level, so noise goes over your head. There’s not much anyway as the two roads on each end of the trails are not heavily used.
This gets a bit confusing now. Take County Rd 10 (running north out of Port Hope) to 10th Line (running East from County Rd 10). You see what I mean ? I recommend you park around the “No Exit” sign at Lunny Lane. Just slightly past Lunny Lane on the North side of the 10th Line you’ll see an opening in the trees. There’s a bit of a downhill grade which levels out at Ranger’s Hollow. This link will open Google Maps at the location : https://goo.gl/maps/isfk28N8CpFvMjrw6
Continuing North on the trail will bring you out on 1st Line Eagleson Rd. Turn Left as you emerge from Ranger’s Hollow trail and walk up Eagleson. You’ll walk past a rough looking trail with no signs on it. Then you’ll see a 2 wheeled road/trail going back South (left). UPDATE August 24, 2020
with a “No Littering No Dumping etc etc “ sign amongst the trees left of the trail entrance. That will take you back down to 10th Line across from Gilmour. Turn left as you emerge onto the 10th Line and you’ll have another pleasant gravel road walk back to Lunny Lane and your car.
For almost the entirety of both trails two people can walk side by side, which always makes for a more pleasant walk. There are a few hills on both trails, but nothing insurmountable. You’ll notice the occasional coincidentally placed tree stump or glacial boulder for a rest during or after, a hill.
Why “The Hollows”? Well, the one North of Lunny Lane is called Ranger’s Hollow because years ago Ranger led a group hike through it. They stopped in the hollow for lunch, and the group was quite smitten with the landscape. So, I named it Ranger’s Hollow because … I bloody-well felt like it. I don’t need a reason for everything ya know. UPDATE – April 7, 2018 – for Ranger’s 70th birthday last year, I had a professionally made sign declaring this trail “Ranger’s Hollow” and posted it on a big fallen tree on the East side of the trail, at the Lunny Lane access.
The trail North from Gilmour Rd is called (by us anyway) Gooseberry Hollow because the hill it runs down is lousy with gooseberry bushes. Mind you, the only reason I noticed the bushes, much less the trail was because the wife spotted a huge patch of Spring flowering Bloodroot on the same hill.
The Final Take :
The Hollows are a pair of 1.0 km long parallel trails, with loop potential by taking another pair of parallel 0.8 km gravel road walks connecting them. They’re quiet, relatively easy, and wide enough for two or more walkers side by side. They lead through deep shadowed forest, to open sunny patches at their North ends. Through the seasons, you’ll scare up a few grouse, see a whole lot of Bloodroot and other Spring ephemerals, gooseberries, giant puffball mushrooms, and delicious wild apples. Should you wish to loop them, the views of farm and forest from the gravel road sections are typical of Southern Ontario. The difference in view is a nice change between the trails. As stated, you can always treat both trails as return walks to avoid any roads, &/or just make a shorter walk if you wish.