Wednesday, June 02, 2021

Goderich and Ontario's West Coast

I haven't spent a lot of time along the towns that follow the edge of Lake Huron but I have heard great things of Ontario's West Coast - sounds like California to me. There is a 127km long rail trail that runs between Guelph and Goderich (called G2G) which is a little to long for me, so we parked a little closer to Goderich and made the journey into the lakeside town.
Menesetung Bridge crossing the Maitland River
The view from the bridge looking towards the Sifto salt mine

The beautiful turquois waters of the Great Lake leads into the bays of Goderich, while the wide waters of the Maitland River spill into Huron just north of the massive Sifto salt mine owned by Compass Minerals' - the world's largest underground salt mine! It's funny because you think of mines as only being in northern Ontario or other places away from urban development. This mine sits right in the harbour, just across from the main beach, bringing up over 7 million tons of the white mineral every year with enough resources to last another 100 years. The mine is pictured at top.

In 1986 they erected a salt monument to commemorate 100 years of salt mining in the area

Reaching down almost 533 metres under the surface of the lake, the mine is spread out over 5 square miles where giant caverns are supported by pillars of salt. Most of the salt is used for roads in the winter to provide de-icing to keep us safe. They found the ancient Michigan Salt Basin while drilling for oil in 1866. Sifto started their mine in the harbour in 1959 and so far they haven't breached the water and emptied the lake.

Tiger Dunlops Tomb along the trail

The rail trail that leads into Goderich crosses the Maitland River on the Menesetung Bridge which provides a great view of the mine. Later as you drop down from the valley's edge you venture along the boardwalk in front of beaches that remain closed for now. The city is rebuilding the beach park and it will be nice when done.
The beach looks a little rocky

Goderich has a cool downtown with the main core laid out way before development occurred. Based on an octagon with the courthouse and park settings in the middle, or 'Square'. Wide streets feed into the even wider main octagon allowing for plenty of parking and easily walkable downtown collection of stores and restaurants.

Looking into the Square
There is even a small theatre in the octagon

Related Posts by Categories

Widget by Hoctro | Jack Book

No comments:

Doors Open

Scarborough Bluffs





Lake Ontario

Nathan Phillips Square