Newsletter, September 2010

The hot humid days of summer seem to be finally yielding to the cooler and fresh days of fall. Not everyone likes to hike in the heat of the summer and several people commented that they weren’t active because of the heat. This seemed to be substantiated as last Sunday as soon as the weather moderated club attendance was up, or was it the attraction of the wine and cheese, no, that couldn’t be the case! What ever the reason we had a most enjoyable early fall walk around Pointe des Cascade and a superb picnic with a great variety of cheeses and wine. Thanks to Gaetan Allard for organising this event.

Two weeks earlier under threatening skies Martin Hofton lead a hike which covered many of the trails that exist in the Town of Hudson; he should package this and sell it to the Chamber of Commerce.

During the summer we also inaugurated our full day Saturday hike. On August 14th ten people convoyed via the Hudson-Oka ferry to Val David where others joined them and hiked along the trail of P’tit Train du Nord linear park to Mont Roland Station. This event was well received and it was felt that such an event every 2 months to start with would be welcome.

September and October are considered by many to be the best times of the year for hiking. Crisp cool mornings warm afternoons and of course the spectacular fall colours here in Canada, so it should not come as a surprise that we have a full schedule planned for  the next few weeks.

Our bi-weekly Sunday morning hikes will continue, with events planned for every second Sunday. The next one is Sunday September 19th when we will return to the regional park of Oka.

Our second Saturday full day event is scheduled for Saturday October 23rd with Mont St Hilaire being considered as a possible destination. Details are yet to be finalised for these outings but will be announced and distributed by email and as usual published on our website: www.lesrara.ca

The Quebec Federation de la Marche has selected Rigaud this year as the site for their Festival de la Marche which will take place on Saturday September 26th on the trails of L’Escapade. The Ramblers Association has been asked to provide leaders and guides for the day. Claude Fortier and Gaetan Allard are in charge of this project and if they have not already done so they will be contacting members to participate. This promises to be a great event with many hikers present and we have been allocated space for a Ramblers Association kiosk to publicize our activities. Your Board would like to do this and have approved the expenditure of the monies for an appropriate banner and literature but we will only go ahead if we have a sufficient number of volunteers to man the kiosk from 1:00pm – 5:00pm. If you are interested in helping in this capacity please contact me.

On the Saturday and Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend we will be holding the 3rd annual Long Trek or Fr. Demers hike. This takes place over 2 days starting in Hudson on the Saturday and winds through Vaudreuil – Dorion, St Lazare, St Marthe, Mont Rigaud and finishes in the centre of Rigaud on Sunday afternoon. Martin Hofton is the overall leader for this trek and this year with the help of Christine Moore and Claude Fortier he has been walking the trails to ensure that we either hike on public land or when we must pass on private land the permission of the owner is obtained before the event. We are hopeful that this protocol will go a long way to assuage the ill feeling about hikers that has been portrayed in the local press of late. Another first for this year, we will end the hike at La Vieille Tavern in Rigaud for a refreshing and celebratory pint of beer. It was felt that this event in previous years ended too abruptly without a chance for the participants to reminisce, exchange experiences and retell old war stories.

Again full details by email and on the internet but please register early as we may have to limit the number of participants for safety and security reasons.

Now for a couple of house keeping matters: everyone is reminded that their membership expires on the last day of September. To participate as a member  in our bi-weekly hikes starting  on Sunday October 3rd or the Father  Demers event on October 9th and 10th you must have paid your 2010-2011 annual fees and be wearing  current Ramblers Association identification. It is important too that members give the club an emergency telephone numbers that should show on their identification card. Please make it easier for the volunteers involved by promptly paying your fees for next year. The procedure to follow has been emailed to everyone and details are available on our website.

The financial year for the Ramblers Association ends on September 30 and an Annual General Meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday October 5th at 7:30 at the Escapade Chalet in Rigaud. At that time a report will be given of the activities of the past year and plans for the future. Members will also be presented with the financial statements of the Club for 2009-2010 and a projected budget for 2010-2011. The AGM is a time when the Board of Directors is elected by the membership and the nominating committee is preparing a slate of directors for presentation on that night. Several individuals who have served in the past will be stepping down and these people will have to be replaced. If you have an interest in becoming a Director of the Ramblers Association or are interested in helping in any way please let us know by contacting me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

It should be remembered that everything this association does in done by volunteers and it is only by attracting more people to plan and lead hike and help with the administration will we be able to maintain a club with such a variety of activities.

I would like to thank the current Board and the other volunteers for their hard work and dedication, the quality of our events manifest their competence and success but I must make a special mention of the contribution of Diane Boileau. After meeting with the St Lazare first-responders and asking their advice Diane designed and put together a first aid kit for the club to carry on hikes and using her own money she purchased the necessary supplies and donated to the club, thank you Diane.

Enjoy the balance of the summer and I look forward to meeting you on the trails

Terry Browitt