I've been living in Ontario for almost 21 years now and with the exception of the odd summer and about six months (where I worked elsewhere), I have been living in Toronto for 16 of those 21 years. (So I guess if you take all that time off, it's fair to say, I've been living in Toronto for 15 years.)
In that time, I've lived right downtown in the heart of the city, I've lived uptown in a sort-of trendy area and I've lived in the suburbs -- which is where I am now.
And in 15 years, I've gotten to know a lot of this city. Parts I know really well and can easily make my way around to the best restaurant, the best park, the best splash pad or the best bar (depending on what needs I need to fill at the time) and other parts I've been to, but don't know well. Hey, it's a pretty big city afterall.
So, imagine my surprise, when earlier this month, I discovered a part of the city I never knew existed.
Ever since Austin learned to ride his bike this spring, we've been going on family bike rides -- with Alex on the back of Ryan's bike of course. They started out as short rides, as I was constantly picking him up off the ground, but, as he improved, they gradually got longer. Until Canada Day weekend, when we decided to try out our new car bike rack.
We strapped our bikes to our car and drove to Wilket Creek Park. (For those not familiar with the area, it's near Eglinton and Leslie -- and for those not familiar with that, well, it's in Toronto). I've been there a few times over the years, walking along the path in the fall with the kids (it's really beautiful in the fall). But this time, instead of going the way I knew (north), we decided to check out where the southern path took us.
Turns out, Toronto has a whole system of bike trails (or walking/running/inline skating trails) that I never knew existed. There we were, down in the valley, far away from traffic and buildings -- biking along trails through open fields and through forests. Under bridges and over creeks. Who knew?
About 3 kilometres away from where we started, we reached a path that travelled parallel to the DVP. And although Ryan and I would've loved to keep going -- we figured 6 kilometres (we had to go back afterall!) was probably enough for Austin's little legs. So we turned around and headed back where we came from.
After that adventure, I'm already excited for our next non-busy weekend so that we discover other routes along that trail.