From prairie plains to rugged peaks to expansive ocean, Western Canada presents the most geographically diverse areas for exploration along The Great Trail. Our esteemed partners in the four western provinces continue to work diligently to connect sections of the Trail, while countless volunteers dedicate thousands of hours to the same goal. Here are a few highlights of what’s happening out west.
Manitoba: Creating Connections
Trails Manitoba, our valued partner, moved forward in leaps and bounds by making wonderful headway on Trail development. Family-friendly Crocus Trail, measuring 136 kilometres from Russell to the Saskatchewan border, now boasts a full connection. Meanwhile other Trail development projects continue to progress such as the Border to Beaches section. As its name suggests, this picturesque part of the Trail will connect the Ontario border to several of Manitoba’s beautiful beaches including those at Gull Lake and Otter Falls.
Saskatchewan: Collaboration Builds Bridges
Spanning nearly 1,700 kilometres, Saskatchewan’s stretch of The Great Trail now boasts province-wide connection! From prairie to pine and waterway to greenway, outdoor enthusiasts can anticipate ample environments to enjoy. This prairie province provides endless opportunities to walk, cycle, paddle and ski through a diverse range of settings: urban municipalities, provincial parks and, of course, stunning plains.
We’re proud of you, Saskatchewan, for becoming Canada’s fourth province or territory to achieve connection, after Newfoundland, P.E.I. and Yukon. Marking this milestone, a Moose Jaw-based ceremony included the historic unveiling of the Trans Canada Trail Pedestrian Bridge, a collaborative project with the Canadian Armed Forces. (We tip our hats to the reservists from 38 Combat Engineer Regiment, 38 Canadian Brigade Group.) TCT donations provided the construction supplies for the bridge, creating a perfect example of how Canadians continue to work together to build The Great Trail. Accolades are in order for the Saskatchewan Vision 2017 Trail Committee, dedicated volunteers and generous donors. We thank each and every one of you for your ongoing efforts!
Alberta: Spectacular Alpine Views
Our partnership with Alberta TrailNet gives us the power to move mountains in Alberta, where work is underway on the High Rockies Trail. This trail will connect the Banff Park boundary at Goat Creek to Elk Pass in the south. Once completed, this rugged pathway will serve as the westernmost section of The Great Trail in Alberta, offering hikers some of the most spectacular alpine views in Canada. In other parts of the province, such as Clear Hills County and Northern Sunrise County, new roadway sections take us one step closer to province-wide connection.
British Columbia: All Aboard? Yes, Canada’s Great Trail Includes Boats
Beautiful British Columbia is blowing it out of the water through a ground-breaking new partnership with BC Ferries. We are delighted to include three BC Ferries routes to connect Trail users to the extensive land-based paths of The Great Trail. Trail users can look forward to using these blueways to traverse the magnificent coastal waters between Vancouver Island and the mainland. British Columbia’s progress extends to other parts of the province where a number of greenway projects reached completion this year. These completed sections include a spectacular mountain bike trail called Morning Mountain in Central Kooteney and the must-see Kinsol Trestle View Platform on the Cowichan Trail on Vancouver Island.