Simcoe County’s scenic skating trail officially opened Friday evening.
In its third year of operation, the 1.3-kilometre Simcoe County Museum Skating Trail winds around the grounds of the museum for skaters to take in the winter wonderland.
And even in blustery weather like today, most of the trail is protected from the harsh elements.
“The good thing though is we’ve altered the trail a bit from last season, so there are very few open spots," said maintenance supervisor Mike Burns. "It really winds through the trees, which is very scenic and will help if there is blowing snow.”
The skating trail is made from water drawn from a well and from two water tanks. Two Zambonis help keep the ice clear and smooth as well as a tractor with a full broom and two smaller units with brooms for the edges.
There is also plenty of space for a skater to get ready even in the outdoors.
“We clear the Sugar Shack building and move in the benches where there is a wood stove,” said Burns. “You walk the rubber mats from the shack to the ice and even that small walk is just a beautiful one with the museum buildings around.”
Burns said that despite the many people who regularly use the trail each year; there are still many more who are surprised it exists.
“So many folks come here because they heard from a friend the day before or they were just visiting the museum one day and heard,” said Burns. “We have 327 acres and it is really gorgeous back here. It is a County of Simcoe secret hidden gem.”
Skating trail hours, weather permitting, are Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 6-9 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m.
The cost varies and all information is available on the website.