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Bleasdell Boulder

Updated on June 17, 2013

Canadian Glacial Erratic

The Bleasdell Boulder was one of the first natural places we visited when I moved to Eastern Ontario and it left a lasting impression on me. I have always wanted to go back and decided to make a point of visiting it over the next four seasons. Back then you had to go through someone's property to find it. It was a little gem in the middle of no where.

Today, thanks to the help of numerous volunteers the Bleasdell Rock has its own parking lot and trail which connects to the Lower Trent Trail (Lower Trent Conservation). The loop trail from the parking lot to the boulder and back again takes about 30 minutes at a casual clip with intermittent stopping to take photos.

The Bleasdell Boulder is located in Glen Miller, Ontario and is often referred as The Glen Miller Rock. It was named after Reverend William Bleasdell who studied the rock and wrote about it in some of his scientific journals.

The Bleasdell Boulder is not just a rock but a "glacial erratic" (see more on this below), one of the largest in North America spanning 44 feet long, 24 feet wide, and 22 feet high. It has been estimated to be 2.3 billion years old. There something incredibly awe-inspiring about that last figure.

The Bleasdell Boulder was privately owned until 2005 when the Lower Trent Conservation took over ownership of the boulder and surrounding area which is home to wildlife and diverse vegetation.

FYI: That image is not the Bleasdell Boulder.

Citation: all images copyright M. E. Wood unless otherwise stated.

Summer

Leading Up to The Boulder - Late Summer

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Just so you know you are in the right spot.This is not Bleasdell BoulderLots of parking available.Short walk to beginning of trail to boulder.Trail map and do's and don'ts while visiting.The trail is well surfaced.Well made bridge to cross stream.I couldn't believe how clean the water is.The area had a good growth season with lots of sun and enough rain to keep everything green...and flowering.
Just so you know you are in the right spot.
Just so you know you are in the right spot.
This is not Bleasdell Boulder
This is not Bleasdell Boulder
Lots of parking available.
Lots of parking available.
Short walk to beginning of trail to boulder.
Short walk to beginning of trail to boulder.
Trail map and do's and don'ts while visiting.
Trail map and do's and don'ts while visiting.
The trail is well surfaced.
The trail is well surfaced.
Well made bridge to cross stream.
Well made bridge to cross stream.
I couldn't believe how clean the water is.
I couldn't believe how clean the water is.
The area had a good growth season with lots of sun and enough rain to keep everything green...
The area had a good growth season with lots of sun and enough rain to keep everything green...
and flowering.
and flowering.

This Plant Seems Confused

This Plant Seems Confused
This Plant Seems Confused

A Visual Gallery of Glaciers

Ice: Portraits of Vanishing Glaciers
Ice: Portraits of Vanishing Glaciers

With a little science and history filled in for good measure.

 

Bleasdell Boulder - Late Summer

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Ta da! Here is the boulder. Kind of looks like the "brain bug" from Starship Troopers.Eek it's going to eat my dog! No, just to give you a size comparison of how big it is.Textures and growth on front face.Textures and growth going to leftRounding the left side of boulder.Textures and growth around back of boulder. Mosquitoes love it back here! And so do rock defacers.Plants seem to like to grow on boulder too. Especially on the back top.Back around to front again. Small crevice in boulder.Large mouth that was eating my dog earlier.Donated bench beside boulder inscribed with, "Make this world a little better and more beautiful because you live in it."
Ta da! Here is the boulder. Kind of looks like the "brain bug" from Starship Troopers.
Ta da! Here is the boulder. Kind of looks like the "brain bug" from Starship Troopers.
Eek it's going to eat my dog! No, just to give you a size comparison of how big it is.
Eek it's going to eat my dog! No, just to give you a size comparison of how big it is.
Textures and growth on front face.
Textures and growth on front face.
Textures and growth going to left
Textures and growth going to left
Rounding the left side of boulder.
Rounding the left side of boulder.
Textures and growth around back of boulder. Mosquitoes love it back here! And so do rock defacers.
Textures and growth around back of boulder. Mosquitoes love it back here! And so do rock defacers.
Plants seem to like to grow on boulder too. Especially on the back top.
Plants seem to like to grow on boulder too. Especially on the back top.
Back around to front again. Small crevice in boulder.
Back around to front again. Small crevice in boulder.
Large mouth that was eating my dog earlier.
Large mouth that was eating my dog earlier.
Donated bench beside boulder inscribed with, "Make this world a little better and more beautiful because you live in it."
Donated bench beside boulder inscribed with, "Make this world a little better and more beautiful because you live in it."

What Do You Think of Bleasdell Boulder?

See results

Mushrooms Love Bleasdell Trail - Fungus Among Us!

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If you know what any of these are please let me know.
If you know what any of these are please let me know.
If you know what any of these are please let me know.

Trail Back to Car -- Well Kept Path

Trail Back to Car -- Well Kept Path
Trail Back to Car -- Well Kept Path

Indepth Look at Boulder and Area

An excellent guide video by "aScotInCanada" of the Bleasdell Boulder including some natural history and facts.

Fall

Bleasdell Boulder - In the Fall

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It is mid-October, thanksgiving has past and the trees are looking gorgeous. It was a lovely drive to Glen Miller filled with reds, golds, and bright yellow.A red sumac keeping the welcome boulder company.A view of the first bridge.Looking out from the bridge.The Bleasdell Boulder surrounded by yellow.Walking around the left side of the boulder.Around the back of the boulder.And coming out the right side of boulder.View of upper right side of boulder.Coming out to the mini cave in front of the boulder.
It is mid-October, thanksgiving has past and the trees are looking gorgeous. It was a lovely drive to Glen Miller filled with reds, golds, and bright yellow.
It is mid-October, thanksgiving has past and the trees are looking gorgeous. It was a lovely drive to Glen Miller filled with reds, golds, and bright yellow.
A red sumac keeping the welcome boulder company.
A red sumac keeping the welcome boulder company.
A view of the first bridge.
A view of the first bridge.
Looking out from the bridge.
Looking out from the bridge.
The Bleasdell Boulder surrounded by yellow.
The Bleasdell Boulder surrounded by yellow.
Walking around the left side of the boulder.
Walking around the left side of the boulder.
Around the back of the boulder.
Around the back of the boulder.
And coming out the right side of boulder.
And coming out the right side of boulder.
View of upper right side of boulder.
View of upper right side of boulder.
Coming out to the mini cave in front of the boulder.
Coming out to the mini cave in front of the boulder.

View from Mini Bridge

View from Mini Bridge
View from Mini Bridge

Reverand William Bleasdell

Notes from Info Booth

  • 1817 to 1889
  • born in Preston, Lancashire, England
  • headmaster in England before studying theology
  • studied theology at Trinity College in Dublin
  • emigrated to Canada in 1848
  • rector of St. George's Anglican Church, Trenton
  • other interests: geology, entomology, and astrology
  • wrote articles for scientific journals
  • first known person to take measurements of boulder (along with Dr. George Lawson, Queen's College)

A Closer Look at Plants - In the Fall

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Oak leaves.They look like mini daisies but I'm not sure what they are. They are about the size of a quarter.Cedar trees with woodpecker holes.Moss and lichen.Sumac.Juniper berries.Sumac up close.
Oak leaves.
Oak leaves.
They look like mini daisies but I'm not sure what they are. They are about the size of a quarter.
They look like mini daisies but I'm not sure what they are. They are about the size of a quarter.
Cedar trees with woodpecker holes.
Cedar trees with woodpecker holes.
Moss and lichen.
Moss and lichen.
Sumac.
Sumac.
Juniper berries.
Juniper berries.
Sumac up close.
Sumac up close.

Where Did Boulder Come From?

Based on its composition it has been surmised that it came from the southern edge of the Precambrian (Canadian) Shield.

Fall Colored Trees from Parking Lot

Fall Colored Trees from Parking Lot
Fall Colored Trees from Parking Lot

Directions

Exit 525 at Hwy 33 (Trenton)and drive 2.5 km. north. Watch for sign.

Take Hwy 33 toward Glen Miller. Area is located just before Glen Miller bridge.

Winter

Bleasdell Boulder - In the Winter

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Winter came really late, we didn't see snow until mid-January but as you can see it was worth the wait.The Bleasdell sign in the parking lot.The path leading to the Bleasdel Boulder.It was partially packed down from earlier walkers and cross country skiers.The first bridge.The stream from the first bridge. The water seemed higher and to be moving pretty good. It was late afternoon and the sun was beginning to dip below the tree line.The view from the opposite side of the bridge.With the sun dipped behind the trees it made picture taking a bit dark but it was still bright enough for walking.Two legged and four legged love the trail.First glimpse of the boulder from the walking path.View opposite the boulder.
Winter came really late, we didn't see snow until mid-January but as you can see it was worth the wait.
Winter came really late, we didn't see snow until mid-January but as you can see it was worth the wait.
The Bleasdell sign in the parking lot.
The Bleasdell sign in the parking lot.
The path leading to the Bleasdel Boulder.It was partially packed down from earlier walkers and cross country skiers.
The path leading to the Bleasdel Boulder.It was partially packed down from earlier walkers and cross country skiers.
The first bridge.
The first bridge.
The stream from the first bridge. The water seemed higher and to be moving pretty good. It was late afternoon and the sun was beginning to dip below the tree line.
The stream from the first bridge. The water seemed higher and to be moving pretty good. It was late afternoon and the sun was beginning to dip below the tree line.
The view from the opposite side of the bridge.
The view from the opposite side of the bridge.
With the sun dipped behind the trees it made picture taking a bit dark but it was still bright enough for walking.
With the sun dipped behind the trees it made picture taking a bit dark but it was still bright enough for walking.
Two legged and four legged love the trail.
Two legged and four legged love the trail.
First glimpse of the boulder from the walking path.
First glimpse of the boulder from the walking path.
View opposite the boulder.
View opposite the boulder.

Glacial Erratic Covered in Snow

Glacial Erratic Covered in Snow
Glacial Erratic Covered in Snow

Around the Boulder - In the Winter

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Around the left side of boulder, someone else already broke snow -- four legs.Ice covering side of boulder.Moss growing from crevices.Back side of boulder.Coming around right side of boulder to view front again.Bent over tree from previous day of freezing rain.Tree bent over path from weight of freezing rain and snow.View of water from second bridge.Opposite view of water from second bridge.Back at vehicle. It was a cold day, -12C but only the dog ended up with an icicle beard.
Around the left side of boulder, someone else already broke snow -- four legs.
Around the left side of boulder, someone else already broke snow -- four legs.
Ice covering side of boulder.
Ice covering side of boulder.
Moss growing from crevices.
Moss growing from crevices.
Back side of boulder.
Back side of boulder.
Coming around right side of boulder to view front again.
Coming around right side of boulder to view front again.
Bent over tree from previous day of freezing rain.
Bent over tree from previous day of freezing rain.
Tree bent over path from weight of freezing rain and snow.
Tree bent over path from weight of freezing rain and snow.
View of water from second bridge.
View of water from second bridge.
Opposite view of water from second bridge.
Opposite view of water from second bridge.
Back at vehicle. It was a cold day, -12C but only the dog ended up with an icicle beard.
Back at vehicle. It was a cold day, -12C but only the dog ended up with an icicle beard.

Spring

The Trail to the Boulder - In the Spring

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We picked a really beautiful spring day to visit the Bleasdell boulder. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping, the squirrels were making whatever noise it is they make.The parking lot and Bleasdell sign.The start of the trail to the Bleasdell Boulder.The welcome rock. Not the Bleasdell Boulder.Beginning of circular trail to boulder.Crossing the first bridge over the very clear running creek.
We picked a really beautiful spring day to visit the Bleasdell boulder. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping, the squirrels were making whatever noise it is they make.
We picked a really beautiful spring day to visit the Bleasdell boulder. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping, the squirrels were making whatever noise it is they make.
The parking lot and Bleasdell sign.
The parking lot and Bleasdell sign.
The start of the trail to the Bleasdell Boulder.
The start of the trail to the Bleasdell Boulder.
The welcome rock. Not the Bleasdell Boulder.
The welcome rock. Not the Bleasdell Boulder.
Beginning of circular trail to boulder.
Beginning of circular trail to boulder.
Crossing the first bridge over the very clear running creek.
Crossing the first bridge over the very clear running creek.

Natural Reclaiming

Natural Reclaiming
Natural Reclaiming

Spring Flora

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Lots of new blossoms along the trail. Many I did not recognize.
Lots of new blossoms along the trail. Many I did not recognize.
Lots of new blossoms along the trail. Many I did not recognize.

The Boulder in Spring

The Boulder in Spring
The Boulder in Spring

A Walk Around the Boulder - In the Spring

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Taking a walk around the boulder beginning on the left.Going around left side of boulder.Around back of boulder.Interesting weathered marks in boulder.Coming around to right side of boulder.Coming out the left side of boulder.Moss on lower right side of boulder.Moss on upper right side of boulder.Coming out to front of boulder again.Mini cave visible from front of boulder.
Taking a walk around the boulder beginning on the left.
Taking a walk around the boulder beginning on the left.
Going around left side of boulder.
Going around left side of boulder.
Around back of boulder.
Around back of boulder.
Interesting weathered marks in boulder.
Interesting weathered marks in boulder.
Coming around to right side of boulder.
Coming around to right side of boulder.
Coming out the left side of boulder.
Coming out the left side of boulder.
Moss on lower right side of boulder.
Moss on lower right side of boulder.
Moss on upper right side of boulder.
Moss on upper right side of boulder.
Coming out to front of boulder again.
Coming out to front of boulder again.
Mini cave visible from front of boulder.
Mini cave visible from front of boulder.

View from Second Bridge

View from Second Bridge
View from Second Bridge

Trail Returning to Parking

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Lots of fallen trees and branches are being reclaimed by the earth.Sun through branches.Woodpeckers have been busy excavating some of the trees.A natural tree ladder.A surprise tree ornament. Soother.Crossing the second bridge. It looks like it is made with railway ties. Very sturdy.View from right side of bridge.View from left side of bridge.Trees from parking lot.Look back at fall to see what these trees looked like.
Lots of fallen trees and branches are being reclaimed by the earth.
Lots of fallen trees and branches are being reclaimed by the earth.
Sun through branches.
Sun through branches.
Woodpeckers have been busy excavating some of the trees.
Woodpeckers have been busy excavating some of the trees.
A natural tree ladder.
A natural tree ladder.
A surprise tree ornament. Soother.
A surprise tree ornament. Soother.
Crossing the second bridge. It looks like it is made with railway ties. Very sturdy.
Crossing the second bridge. It looks like it is made with railway ties. Very sturdy.
View from right side of bridge.
View from right side of bridge.
View from left side of bridge.
View from left side of bridge.
Trees from parking lot.
Trees from parking lot.
Look back at fall to see what these trees looked like.
Look back at fall to see what these trees looked like.

Kate Everson Reminisces at Boulder

Have you been to the boulder? Do you have a similar formation in your area?

Boulder Lens Guestbook - Have you been to the boulder?

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    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      My great grandfather, Paul Heissler, used to own the Bleasdell Boulder!

    • profile image

      JoshK47 5 years ago

      Wow - looks like a gorgeous place! Blessed by a SquidAngel!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Looks like a cool place for a mild hike. Love the icicle beard on the dog.

    • julescorriere profile image

      Jules Corriere 5 years ago from Jonesborough TN

      Happy New Year! Congratulations on your lens being chosen as a top 100 Community Favorite for 2011!

    • JoyfulReviewer profile image

      JoyfulReviewer 5 years ago

      Thanks for the wonderfully informative lens and gorgeous photos. Congratulations on being one of the final 100 favorite Squidoo lenses of 2011!

    • Auntiekatkat profile image

      Auntiekatkat 5 years ago

      Congrats on being nominated for Community Favorite Lenses of 2011. A wonderful lens. Fortunately we both share one thing it was easier to vote than for most as mine was my "why-I-am a- vegetarian was nominated as well. A proud moment for all of us. Good luck in the voting.

    • MCB2011 profile image

      MCB2011 5 years ago

      Wonderful Lens. Never heard of the Boulder. Thanks for the scoop! Congratulations!

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 5 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Your photos are great and I feel like I have actually seen the Bleasdell Boulder. Thanks and congrats on being in the Top 100 Community Favorites.

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 5 years ago

      No not yet, but maybe I will. I don't live in Canada but do visit. Nice job on this lens.

    • timelapselove profile image

      timelapselove 5 years ago

      Sweet lens. Beautiful photos!