The dream of a cross-Canada recreational trail is one step closer to being realized, following the opening of the Sea to Sky Marine Trail, Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations announced today.
The 40-kilometre marine trail spans Howe Sound -- from Horseshoe Bay to Squamish to Gibsons -- and includes campsites in Porteau Cove, Halkett Bay and Plumper Cove provincial parks along with six new provincial marine recreation sites.
The marine trail connects to the 180-kilometre Sea to Sky Trail, which will eventually run from Squamish to D’Arcy, and connect Howe Sound to the Lower Mainland.
The marine trail - which also links to the Trans Canada Trail -- was the result of a partnership among the Province, Squamish Nation, the Squamish-Lillooet and Sunshine Coast regional districts, Town of Gibsons, the Bowen Island Municipality, the Districts of Squamish and West Vancouver and the BC Marine Trail Networks Association.
The Trans Canada Trail is one of the world's longest networks of multi-use recreational trails. Made up of nearly 500 individual trails, it will eventually include more than 3,000 kilometres of trails throughout B.C. cover nearly 24,000 kilometres from the Atlantic to the Pacific to the Arctic oceans.
Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations ─
“B.C. is a haven for outdoor recreational activity and a world-class tourism destination. The Province is proud to have provided staff, resources and funding to the project, and to have taken the lead in co-ordinating this critical leg of the trail. It’s a great way to get people out there, experiencing the natural wonders that define this province.”
Jordan Sturdy, MLA, West Vancouver-Sea to Sky ─
“This is a great moment for the Sea to Sky corridor, connecting our backcountry and marine trails to the nation-wide Trans-Canada Trail network. It's a chance for locals to get out and explore the Sea to Sky and encourage adventurers from across B.C. and Canada - and from around the world - to visit the region and see what we have to offer.”
Mayor Patricia Heintzman, District of Squamish ─
“The opening the Sea to Sky Marine Trail reinforces Squamish's reputation as a strong and health-conscious community, and the Outdoor Recreation Capital of Canada. The Province has done a great job leading this project and, thanks to the work of all of the partners we have expanded the range of activity options made possible by the natural physical attributes of our geography.”
Deborah Apps, president and CEO, Trans Canada Trails ─
“The Trans Canada Trail is delighted to welcome the Sea to Sky Marine Trail into our national network, and we thank everyone involved including Squamish Nation, the Province of B.C., and TCT donor, the RBC Foundation, for their generous investment.”
Ian Campbell, Chief, Squamish Nation ─
“Squamish Nation played an active role in the creation of the Sea to Sky Marine Trail, much of which runs through our traditional territory. It is a sacred trust for us to protect sensitive land and marine habitats here in Howe Sound. At the same time, we want to share them with the people of B.C. — and with visitors from around the world.”
- The Province manages more than 1,000 recreation trails on Crown land, encompassing more than 20,000 kilometres, providing outdoor recreational access throughout British Columbia.
- The Province has worked with trail organizations and communities around B.C. to add thousands of kilometres of trails over the past decade.
- In 2012, the Province announced a comprehensive trail strategy, a collaborative approach for management and development of a world-renowned network of recreation trails.
B.C. recreation sites and trails: http://www.sitesandtrailsbc.ca
Trails Strategy for British Columbia: http://www.sitesandtrailsbc.ca/documents/Trail-Strategy-for-BC_V6_Nov2012.pdf
Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations