Over the past number of months, when crossing the Red River Floodway, I had begun to notice a gravel path following the west side of the floodway.
At first, I thought it was a pathway for maintenance vehicles. There had been a lot of construction to expand the floodway, in addition to building new, higher bridges over it, and I figured it was there to facilitate the movement of machinery.
Then, this summer, I heard that Greg Selinger, First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Socialist People’s Republic of Manitoba, officially opened the floodway trail. Not only was this pathway that I had seen part of it, but it was also connected with the new foot bridge over PTH 59 into Birds Hill Park.
Today, I decided to check it out for the first time. I went through Transcona and crossed the Perimeter Highway at the new interchange at Dugald Road. I expected to find some signage and a path to access this trail.
Instead, I found a rough patch of dried mud and unmowed grass that workers had probably been using during the construction of the new bridge at this location.
It wasn’t exactly a welcome mat. A passing motorist would not have known that there was even a trail there.
After getting off my bike and walking down, I did find the trail and, from a first glance, it seemed decent enough.
I took the trail for about a mile north, but it was less than ideal on account of the loosely-packed gravel.
I had the trail to myself, but I was actually scared that a dirt bike was going to come barrelling around the corner at any minute. Given the poor quality of this trail, that’s about all it’s good for.
I promptly got off my bike and walked through more brush to get back up to Dugald Road.
The next time I’m out that way, I’ll take the paved shoulder on the Perimeter any day.
I applaud the initiative, but the implementation of this trail has left much to be desired. They can find other ways to honor the late Duff Roblin.