Heber Down Conservation area is situated on 650 acres of valley lands, dry uplands, and wet woodlands. It helps to preserve a part of Central Lake Ontario Conservation’s watershed.
The Canadian Northern Railway established a new line to provide passenger service between Toronto and Trenton. The line passed over Heber Down Conservation Area and over Devil’s Den gully.
Construction of the cement abutment and piers, which were to be the foundation of the Devil’s Den bridge began in January of 1910 and the bridge was completed of March that same year. Some of the old piers can still be seen today. The bridge was named after the gully it passed through. Devil’s den received it’s name because it was believed to have been used as a layover by horse thieves in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s.
Locals superstitiously believed that the noise produced by the thieves and horses was actually the devil himself holding court.
I believe it has been a part of the conservation authority since 1958, and now has trails for both the casual walker, and those who prefer to hike. We didn’t choose the best time for a hike as the trails are still suffering from Winter damage, and were washed out in some places. There are lots of wild flowers, birds and animals to see, unfortunately my camera batteries ran out and I was unable to take as many photos as I would have liked. The mosquitoes were out in full force and rain was threatening, so we left the full trail for a better day. These are some of the photos I managed before the camera gave up.
A burgundy Trillium. They are usually white, but occasionally we will find one this colour or even pink. They are Ontario's provincial flower.One of many nurse logs. Home to insects and small animals, and the start of future trees. Can you see the self sown seedlings here?
A part of the wet woodland, we stood here for a while listening to the frogs and birds. If I were a frog this is where I would want to be. All photos should be clickable if you would like to see more detail.