The KVR portion of The Trans Canada Trail is important to us here. Stewardship of the 113 kilometres section of which we are part, is entrusted to the Vermilion Trail Society.
The VTS News Letter has just come out and it is full of hope and enthusiasm. As many of you know, our own Bill Allinott is president of the Vermilion Trail Society. He explains how there is a renewed energy and interest in the trail and talks about what the trail could be. Much work has been done. In fact the communities have succeed in grading 48 kilometers of the trail themselves.
By bringing together Osprey Lake Rate Payers Association, Erris, Jura Station, Princeton, Coalmont Community Association, Tulameen Community Club along with the RDOS and VTS, a new excitement is developing over the very real possibility of achieving a world class trail.
Individual communities are taking pride in the trail and showing initiative and by cleaning up areas for recreational users. As an example, Coalmont Community Association removed truckloads of garbage from White Sands and built a new outhouse a couple of years ago. The site now draws many visitors and locals. Users appreciate this beautifully upgraded beach and are maintaining it that way.
With communities involved, the trails Society is clearly encouraged by the positive changes that have been taking place and especially pleased to see local towns like Coalmont taking pride in the trail. The six communities have appointed individuals to represent them as directors with the VTS so everyone is now involved in planning and developing the trail with the RDOS.
One of the new ideas to improve the trail which is being discussed is the replacement of the “tube” in the canyon between Princeton and Coalmont which does not allow emergency vehicles, fire crews or horseback riders through. This is a safety hazard. Another idea is to post kilometre signs so travelers can identify where they are and how much further they have to go. Again, this is not just a convenience but also a safety issue. Signs to encourage courtesy to other users and noting that pedestrians and horseback riders have the right away are also being talked about.
We are all users of the trail here, and especially pleased that Bill is both contributing a lot and representing us well.
As president of The Vermilion Trail Society, I am committed to maximizing community input, supporting each community the Rail Trail serves, and developing the mutual benefits of this wonderful resource. I look forward to working in partnership with the RDOS, their staff and engineers on how best to upgrade the trail for the benefit of all.
Note: The pictures are not from Coalmont but the gazebo is located on the trail between here and Princeton and the caboose is right at Princeton. Both are VTS projects.