Quarry capacity quandary

Don’t litter

Some people are going to have their bathing suits in a twist this summer when they show up to the Elora Quarry Conservation Area only to be turned away.

It may ruin their day, but the fact is there are just too many people visiting the quarry. This puts a strain on the environment and available resources.

There are good reasons the Elora Quarry is a popular place: it’s easily accessible, it’s close to home, it’s close to the Guelph and Kitchener areas, and it’s close to downtown Elora.

The quarry, in all its glory, was also featured on some pretty big travel sites in May, garnering thousands of reactions, comments and shares. But if you read some of the comments, many people are angry at how busy it has gotten over the years.

Popularity sometimes comes at a price.

That price is an impact on the local environment around the park, which the Grand River Conservation Area (GRCA) has said is affecting the park and visitor experience.

The GRCA has decided enough is enough and has set a capacity of 1,300 people. It will use a wristband system that will also help curb trespassing that commonly occurs at the park.

My day is more likely to be ruined by people littering and destroying natural features, than if I was told the park is too full.

Hopefully, the people turned away this summer, remember that.

– Olivia


Keep the beach rituals

Just as the first heat wave of the season hit its peak, the Grand River Conservation Authority (GRCA)announced it is limiting the number of visitors allowed each day in the Elora Quarry park. 

Now 1,300 doesn’t seem like that many, especially when hot days saw upwards of 2,000 people flock to the quarry.  

The park is a go-to freshwater swimming hole featuring a beach and beautiful landscape.

One of the major arguments for limiting visitors touted by the GRCA is that the influx of people has a negative impact on the natural environment at the GRCA park.

But wait, the Elora Quarry is a rehabilitated man-made crater in the Earth from long-forgotten rock blasting.

Sure, it looks beautiful now, and yes it is important to preserve the natural environment, but let’s call a spade a spade.

It was a mine and now we’re trying to preserve it because of its natural features  …

Isn’t the hope of every quarry operator that just this situation will happen? That people will forget a site’s origins and consider it natural?

While the GRCA says the limitations will enhance the visitor experience, it will also take away from the classic beach mentality.

Any true beachgoer knows they have to get there early, stake out the terrain, claim their spot and enjoy the day.

Why take all the fun out of classic beach rituals?

– Jaime

Olivia Rutt and Jaime Myslik