It sounds like something out of a fairytale. In The Talking Forest in Lindsay and Omemee Ont., you hear stories from the trees themselves — you just need an app.
“It is an interactive trail app that allows users to explore the trails here at Ken Reid Conservation Area in Lindsay and Windy Ridge Conservation Area in Omemee,” said conservation areas technician Melissa Creasy-Alexander.
“As you walk the trail you’ll come in contact with geolocations in the park which will trigger your phone and a voice will start to talk to you automatically and you’ll get a story from a tree,” she said.
There are 15 talking trees along the 2.2-km trail at Ken Reid Conservation Area, each spouting facts about themselves and the forest.
A hemlock tree chats about the benefits of spending time in nature. Birch trees talk about different types of birch species and how birch syrup is popular in Europe and Russia.
At Windy Ridge Conservation Area there are 11 stops.
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And while it might seem a bit odd to offer a high-tech nature walk, Creasy-Alexander said this pandemic project is a perfect fit.
“We just thought how can we create tours and educational programs in the park that we didn’t have to be a part of,” she said.
“With COVID we have all been really forced to dive into that technology aspect, so this (is) a way to couple those things together and look at technology in a different way.”
She said you might even recognize some of the characters. In fact, Global Peterborough’s own Teresa Kaszuba has lent her voice to the Eastern White Cedar at Windy Ridge.
She said it is also a great way to get kids interested in the forest and to bring people to different parts of the park that they may not normally visit.
And like the trees, this project is growing, with plans to expand to other trails and areas.
For more information, visit the Kawartha Conservation website.