Born and raised in Halifax, I’ve always had great memories of bike rides at Point Pleasant Park, beach combing at McNabs Island, and acting out epic childhood adventures at York Redoubt. Being outdoors was a big part of my childhood and I hope to instil my lifelong appreciation for nature into the greater public and future generations alike.
Much of my life has been spent enjoying the great outdoors in Nova Scotia, Canada. My favourite jobs, sports and other recreational activities were always outdoors. As a kid, I was always playing in the yard, at the park or biking around the city. Through my university years at St. Francis Xavier and Saint Mary’s University, I planted trees in Spring and Summer for the forestry industry. The hard work involved in tree planting is notoriously difficult. It often involved 10 hour days hauling heavy loads of trees through kilometres of clearcut wastelands in scorching heat, driving rain, bitter winds and even snow. There was nowhere to take shelter so the only choice was to quit (as most people do in the first day or two) or keep powering on. I learned a lot of invaluable lessons about my physical and mental limits. I eventually thrived on the challenges and became one of the most productive planters in the entire operation.
Other than those valuable lessons, another thing that stuck with me was a feeling of disgust from seeing the abhorrent treatment of our environment. Spending each day in remote clear-cuts, hidden from most people’s view, felt like living in a dystopian future reality that I do not want to see come to fruition. Anytime thereafter that I went out into unspoiled nature, I was filled with a new-found appreciation for its beauty. These early days played a big part in why I created HalifaxTrails.ca and why I enjoy working on it to this day.
Why I Created HalifaxTrails.ca
I created HalifaxTrails.ca in 2009 as I started to explore new areas of our great outdoors. I relied mostly on word of mouth to find new places. Searching online for maps, photos and videos of local trails didn’t turn up many results, so I decided to create them myself. Through the years I’ve documented most of my trips in hopes of helping people explore the amazing natural resources which make Halifax and Nova Scotia so beautifully unique. It is my view that the more people we can get out enjoying nature, the more aware we become collectively of how fragile, threatened and under-funded our natural assets are. As these places become well known to the public, their preservation will hopefully become more important to those in a position to do something about it. (the collective saving of Blue Mountain Birch Cove Lakes wilderness area being a great example).
I have put a lot of time and effort into the site through the years, and have learned many valuable lessons and skills along the way. It has been a joy to share my work with the public and get feedback from people who feel as passionate as I do about the amazing places we have in our own backyard. I gladly respond to emails from tourists and locals alike and am proud to say I’ve helped many people discover our great outdoors. Through Halifax Trails, I’ve been able to help promote the work of local volunteer organizations, and environmental causes while staying independent and self-funded. I do every aspect of work on the site. Every photo, video, map, blog and social media post is created by myself alone.
Thank you, and happy trails!
A ridiculous amount of coffee is consumed while working on HalifaxTrails.ca. Add some fuel if you'd like to keep me going!