Ganatchio Extended

Riding my bike around town has been limited. Yes, I take the trip to work, but I take the same route every time, because I know it is the safest/shortest trip. In my end of town, I’m not really aware of anywhere else I can ride my bike if I’m not thundering toward work. Until…

My wife was psyched to go for a ride some time a week or so ago, and we hit the streets. We decided to head toward the Detroit River, north from our home, where there is a long-time favourite trail along the riverfront called the Ganatchio Trail. Everyone uses this thing. It isn’t however, located on the west end, but is situated toward the east end of town. It’s good for me, because I live out here now, but in the old days, I would not have even given it a second thought because it is an “east end” kind of ride.

On our trip, I was shown by my wife where the new St. Joseph’s high school was located (hidden) out near where the new (much debated) arena is located. It just so happens that they are located very close to the city limit, bordering a town called Tecumseh…a known spot for people with a little more money, and inhabitants who have often moved from Windsor, literally down the road, to a place where the taxes are less…and most importantly, is NOT near the dreaded West End or the “dangerous” downtown.

Are you sensing an opinion forming about elitist-driven projects, rooted in parts of town where people have money?

So as we are riding, Jhoan suggests we get onto this trail in the same area as the arena and new high school are…

Taking this mostly-unpublicized trail was a mind-altering event for me, because it was like riding through the closest thing we have to a nature preserve. Untouched trees, mingling alongside the Little River, with wet areas, and park areas, ponds, etc. I found myself shocked that this existed. It was a wonderful option for me to take when I am not working, but still want some aerobic exercise.

Since I went to this place, I started telling other bike riders, and other people who live in the west end, or downtown, but who love to trek wherever the bike is welcome. NONE of them knew what I was talking about.

“It’s an extension of the Ganatchio…it goes south, perpindicular to the existing trail. it’s incredible!”

“Never heard of it,” they replied.

So, I took some video while riding it for the first time, and I thought I’d share it with you.

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4 responses to “Ganatchio Extended

  1. I need to find this… but it’s sooo far east! 😦 Maybe I’ll stick to Malden Park (which I haven’t visited yet this year…hmm!)

    Have you seen (aka mapmyrun, mapmywalk)? It can save maps of good bikerides for remembering later. A quick search there, and someone seems to have sketched out the area you’re talking about:

  2. Isn’t it great! Our family has gone there for some serious fun! Everyone on the trails is so friendly, considerate and it was wonderful to be so close to nature right inside the city limits. Glad you found it, enjoy it more often now, it’s a bit out of the way for us and we need to get a bike trailer for our car to get there. Devonwood is also great for riding trails surounded by nature.

  3. Hey Pal,
    That is a great trail!, There is a place that I’ve been going biking for many years west of Windsor Salt mine, it will blow your mind! You definitely don’t feel like you are in Windsor, all dirt but fun single track to boot around on for hours. We should go sometime, you’d love it, completely covered in trees and deer everywhere.

  4. I have been birding and biking this place for years!

    What is most saddening is the bullshit bridge they put across the trail to go to the new arena disaster. Last time I was home in May, I almost cried when I saw it. I was so upset. I could go on about why they didn’t put the arena where the abandoned Walmart will forever stand, and why the hell they tucked it back in where it is now. It makes NO sense, and now they’ve permanently altered what little open space Windsor has left.

    Nevertheless, the funniest part about that part of the world, what we’ll call the East Riverside Planning Area (ERPA), is the lack of building that is going on.

    What they did was create artificial wetlands, snake hibernaculums, and planted a lot of trees. Then they put down they’re roads and their street lights and they just left it. Every time I was home for the last few years I saw no change. I laughed. The grasslands were there, the wetlands held birds, and it was great. But now the arena, the high school, and other bullshit.

    PROGRESS!! Well, for someone, right? As long as the developers make money…

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