28th December: Some weeks ago, work began on the repairs to the Glen Cedar footbridge. Here is the scaffolding at an early stage:
Here it is more recently, with the pedestrian tunnel completed (note red hat):
The scaffolding is reaching up to the underside of the bridge:
The group of people (including the red hat) has now passed through the tunnel:
The work will last until about next June. The top wooden surfaces of both the roadway and sidewalks of the bridge will be replaced. The sides will be heightened. The stairs down the side will also be replaced by new ones. Finally, apparently the whole bridge will be repainted.
Two portable cabins have appeared to act as offices for the workers, together with a washroom:
This is the other cabin:
There is also heavy equipment:
And this front-end loader:
Everything has now been surrounded by a wire fence. A portable washroom outside the fence might come in handy if you feel a call of nature during work hours. But I note it is locked during the holidays, and probably also after work.
Earlier, many trees were cut down under the bridge. All that was left was this pile of wood chips:
On top of the bridge, a fence closes off one side, ready for work. Apparently, the repairs will proceed one side at a time. There will only be a short period during which the whole bridge will be closed.
Let us hope the project proceeds smoothly, unlike the dog park shade structure, where construction seems to have stopped indefinitely, while the engineers try to figure out how to deal with the rubble and water down below.
Birding notes from Ken Morin
Sunday was the local club’s annual bird count. My colleague and I saw little of note, due we believe to the cold weather and overcast sky. Here is the tally for the Canada Bird Count :
1 Ring billed Gull
1 Downy Woodpecker
1 Blue Jay
4 Black capped Chickadees
3 American Robins
2 Song Sparrows
3 American Goldfinches
10 House Sparrows
2 Song Sparrows
All these birds I saw today (Tues) along with a White breasted Nuthatch and Northern Cardinals.
These are the main denizens of the ravine in the winter, hardy birds that manage through the cold. You may also see Kinglets and Hawks occasionally.
Yes, I’m crazy enough to walk the ravine in -12C : have to admit it wasn’t bad at all without a wind to rip your face off. Near the Glen Cedar Bridge there was a flurry of activity in the conifers and trees behind them. This small stand of evergreens seems to be a hive of activity, the seed eaters such as juncos and chickadees peck about and the nuthatches and woodpeckers hammer away looking for insects. Throw in the odd house sparrow, cardinals and robins checking out the scene and this is a spot worth a stop. The construction will likely drive everything away when it resumes.
Further along, at the “rocks” as I call the black collection housing a TTC door, I stopped when I observed movement in the bushes. Much to my delight the bird remained perched with only a little tail flick at the start. I knew it was something different than what I had previously seen. Stocky build, buffy clear breast and a pronounced white supercilium (eye line) – a Carolina Wren. This species is often heard but not easily seen. It was not calling or scolding or singing, which are the usual manner of identifying this bird. Another first for the Cedarvale Ravine List!
I wish everyone a Happy and Joyous New Year. All the best in 2018.
Jerry Austin reported that on 18th December he and his son sighted a fox casually crossing the road on the north side of the Glen Cedar footbridge, and going into the driveway of the large house on the west side. He said it looked healthy.