29 November, 2016

On a quest for safer equestrian trails in Quebec

Volunteer and avid Trail user Nicole Gagné — whom you may recognize from a few of TCT’s videos — says she’s actually a bit shy about being in the spotlight. “I’m not someone who enjoys being in front of a camera, but I guess it’s good for anyone to get out of their comfort zone once in a while!”

Nicole is most comfortable tending to the horses on her ranch, with her husband Pierre Fiset. Nicole and Pierre spend a lot of time with other local volunteers involved with the Club des randonneurs équestre de Portneuf (C.R.E.P.) in St-Basile-de-Portneuf, planning Trail development, clearing paths and building new stretches of trails ideal for horseback riding.

“I look forward to the day when we equestrians can go anywhere and everywhere,” says Nicole. “There’s nothing like being out on the Trail on your horse. So that’s what we’re all working for.” The Cavalier Trail — which is a stone’s throw from Nicole’s home in St-Basile-de-Portneuf — is multi-use and is popular with horseback riders, snowmobilers and skiers, hikers and cyclists. “You have to share the space on our Trail section and be aware of your surroundings, and that’s what I like about it. There are regulations, making it safe for anyone to use.”

Nicole has been volunteering for Trans Canada Trail since 2011.