If you go to the City of Waterloo home page and navigate to the link describing Bechtel Park, you will see an cheerful, summery image of a soccer field and Gator (see the link here). However, hidden behind the fields and the Manulife Financial Soccer and Sports Complex is a gem of a hiking spot. Trails in the woodlot of Bechtel Park are about 3.2 kilometers in distance and offer peaceful walking, hiking, and cross-country skiing opportunities in one of the busier corners of Waterloo, Ontario (read about the trails, and access interactive maps, here).
Although cycling is not permitted in the woodlot, it is a popular spot for dog walkers (Ontario Trail Council, 2014). The area is full of lovely vistas that belie the urban sound of traffic in the distance. Trees species include red oak, bur oak, black cherry, and hemlock groves. Hemlock trees provide the space with a reflective, Japanese-garden appearance even in the depths of winter. Alternate leaf dog wood and yellow birch adorn the understory and reflect the health of this relatively old, urban woodlot.
This is a great spot to visit at any time of year for a relaxed hike with family and friends.
Address: 185 Bridge St W, Waterloo, ON N2K 1K9