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Date: 10/22/2019
Subject: October 2019 e-Newsletter
From: Lambton Outdoor Club

Lambton Outdoor Club
  October 2019 e-Newsletter

2019 Annual General Meeting


Neither thunder nor storm could keep forty-four members from the twenty eighth Annual General Meeting of the Lambton Outdoor Club at the generous meeting room at Tourism Sarnia-Lambton in the Ontario Travel Information Centre. Similar to last year, the club broke with tradition and offered coffee and cookies, and the meeting opened with a quiet minute as we remembered those who have taken their final hike on this earth. 

President Les McDermott delivered his annual summary, once again he reported on a busy activity schedule for the hiking, biking and paddling contingent, and only a lack of snow prevented the winter aficionados getting into local action.

Hiking chair Louise Gibson has recruited more weekend leaders, and Lester Earle and Tony Arnold were thanked for organizing midweek hikes.

The club’s back office continues to develop, the website and e-newsletter are evolving, the logo was professionally updated and eye catching “business cards” for members and “rack cards” for public display are available. Always conscious of the need for skills upgrading, we offered Wilderness Training, Cycle maintenance and event leader training, updated the liability waiver and refreshed the First Aid kits. Departing membership secretary Larry Suffield was thanked for his years of envelope licking, and Phil Valance welcomed as his replacement; the task having been vastly simplified by the mostly online membership submissions.  Nico Van Dyl was greeted as the new VP by Les, who was most gracious with his thanks. Joan Elliott was acknowledged for her diligence with minutes, archives and all other tasks as Secretary.


Treasurer Rod Richmond delivered his favourable report, budget $6,000, expenditure $5,946, result, satisfaction. The results were audited and approved by Mike Elliott. Over 80% of membership transactions are now electronic, results instantaneous. The few trickling in by mail take a little longer, up to a month to trek from Camlachie to the downtown PO Box. The executive was acclaimed, and each of the activity chairs, Louise, Cynthia, Judy and Brian reported healthy committees to support their programmes. The Social Committee has regrouped under Sharon’s able hand and is set for the Christmas dinner at Olive’s by popular choice. Chris introduced her media committee covering website, newsletter, publicity and social media, and introduced new member Brian St Pierre.


The new business involved discussion of a significant change to the membership and fee structure.  The present inequity was graphically presented by Phil, and the proposal to discontinue family memberships, being replaced by universal individual memberships for people over 18, was approved with only two dissenting. The new fee of $25 is hoped will be revenue neutral; guests may still be invited to attend social events, and the honorary category is unaffected. There was two questions from the floor, John Timar asked about club policy for supporting local “political” initiatives in support of outdoor facilities (eg bike lanes, waterfront trail), and John Lovegrove questioned the provision of liability Insurance for event leaders. both issues to be discussed by council. Door prizes winners Brenda Lorenz, Greg Hogan and Doug Clarke who will enjoy eating, drinking and enhanced wardrobe opportunities.


The business meeting was adjourned after an hour, and after a break we were transported to the Everest base camp with the locals who trekked there in March, including members Winston Ramharry, Dave and Sharon Crowe, Lori Clancy. The pair of ladies outlined this amazing trip with colourful anecdotes, breathtaking slides, and a liberal injection of humor. Our members go on amazing trips, do neat stuff, have fun and return with engaging stories.

Please note these are not minutes, just a personal reflection of an enjoyable evening (never thought I would write that about an AGM!)


Mike Tanner

Membership Chair Phil Vallance explains the new membership fee structure.

Event Leader Training Session
LOC recently held an Event Leader Training session at the Lochiel Kiwanis Centre in Sarnia with 25 club members in attendance. Peers with experience presented topics of interest to fairly new leaders/coordinators and those expressing an interest for the future. Topics included: the life cycle of an event, safety, first aid, insurance, and website How-Tos. For those unable to attend this time, we will probably offer this seminar again next year, likely in the Spring. Our thanks goes out to those who stepped up and presented this year at the session, and to all of our volunteer leaders who ensure well-executed, safe and fun events for all.
Chris Richmond

More Bike lanes


The recent rebuilding of Michigan Avenue between Colborne and Christina St was a summer long inconvenience for motorists but was worth the wait for the cycling community. The Lambton County funded project included bike lines on both sides of the street. As a bonus the lane markings were continued down to Front St. The addition ties into the embryonic network along Colborne Road to the popular multi use path to the river. Sarnia is late to the game, but it is good to see that cyclists recognized as bona fide users of the roads.


Mike Tanner

Great Lake-To-Lakes Trail Bike Tour

During The Michigander 5-day cycling event I participated in last July, the organizers promoted interest in taking part in the upcoming inaugural 6-day event connecting for the first time a series of bike paths from Lake Michigan across the state to Lake Huron. Although I had already taken part in three separate one-week cycling events this summer, I was compelled to add a fourth.


This event promised to be a little more expensive than normal primarily because of not only the registration fee to cover luggage handing, most meals, and a good variety of refreshments at the various rest stops, but we had to book our own hotels rather than camp along the way – not to mention all of this was in U.S. funds.


Because I couldn’t find any local area cyclists in Port Huron (where the ride was to end) registered for the event, my wife agreed to drive me and my bike to the starting point in South Haven, and then drive back the next day. After waiting out a torrential downpour on the first morning, we cyclists enjoyed a police escort to the official opening ceremonies where a large green buoy was unveiled marking the beginning of the inaugural ride of Route 1 across Michigan. We departed on the new Kal-Haven Trail to start the 70 km ride to our first overnight destination in Kalamazoo.


Day 2 found us on the Kalamazoo River Trail leading eventually along a wide shoulder on M-96 to the Battle Creek Linear Park pathway into Battle Creek, the cereal capital of the world, and a short rest stop with “Tony the Tiger”. We then entered the Calhoun County Trail where we concluded our 78 km ride to overnight in Marshall.


Day 3 started along some quiet roads leading to the Albion River Trail punctuated by a brief stop for free cider and a donut before connecting to the beautiful paved Falling Water Trail followed by the Inter-City Trail and Armory Arts Pathway as we finished our 70 km ride to Jackson. We travelled some quiet rural roads the next day before arriving at the newly constructed Mike Levine Lakelands Trail and followed it for about 50 km before completing what would have been the normal 80 km ride for the day to Brighton. However, many of us couldn’t resist taking a 10 km side trip to Hell, the small but very unique and touristy town, especially popular with bikers (i.e. the ones with motors).


Leaving Brighton the next morning, we took the Mall Pathway connecting to the Island Lake Pathway, the Huron Valley Trail, the Michigan Air Line Trail, West Bloomfield Trail and eventually the Clinton River Trail before arriving in Pontiac where we were treated to a tour of the downtown restoration project before arriving after 70 km to our destination in Auburn Hills.


The final Day 6 had us re-entering the Clinton River Trail on our way to the popular Macomb Orchard Trail (familiar to many of us in the Lambton Outdoor Club) on our way to Rochester before having to ride the final 50 km of our total 110 km route for the day on rural and municipal roads leading to our final destination in Port Huron. As was the case during our first day in South Haven, we were similarly escorted by police to the Fort Gratiot Lighthouse for closing ceremonies and the media presentation of the large red buoy matching the green one at the beginning of the Great Lake to Lakes Trail Tour.


All in all, it was a very interesting experience and made even more noteworthy by the concerted dedication and commitment by the Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance to “link people and communities” by building and connecting bike paths in Michigan. Ontario … take note!


Submitted by  Les McDermott


Your editor on assignment
You know it's been a tough day when...
It's good to see the finish line

LOC members are once again invited to shop the Columbia employee store in London for some great merchandise and some great deals. Oct. 25th - Nov 17th

Work in Progress

This new format e-newsletter is a work in progress, and although many members bemoan access to a hard copy, we have been working within the format available on the Club Express website. One innovation for this edition, is the inclusion of linkable sections. Many of the stories submitted reflect the excitement of the author about their experience and are consequently lengthy. For those wishing to read in full, we will include a link to the document on the website. For members wishing to print a hard copy, for future editions I will try to include a link to the newsletter to a Word or pdf format. As for content, this is a newsletter about your activities and interests, and although I can compile your adventures, you must take the initiative when on a trip to decide to share the experience. In this regard President Les is setting a fine example by journaling his summer of cycling. If you have any comments or copy, please send to

Stories of around 500 words are ideal, but longer will be accommodated plus a couple of pictures. 


Mike Tanner, editor

2019 AGM President's Report
President Les McDermott delivered his report this year at the Annual General Meeting on October 15th.


Our condolences to Jack Beaton and family on the passing of club member Sally Beaton
on Sept 26, 2019.