The Rails to Trails between Kimberley and Cranbrook is part of The Great Trail. Bulletin file.

The Rails to Trails between Kimberley and Cranbrook is part of The Great Trail. Bulletin file.

Teck donates $1 million for improvements to The Great Trail

Groups interested in making improvements to The Great Trail in the Kootenays are now welcome to apply for funding thanks to a major donation from Teck Resources Ltd.

The Great Trail is now the name of the Trans Canada Trail. The trail was rebranded in mid-2016, although the name of the non-profit which raises funds for maintenance and further development of the trail continues to be Trans Canada Trail.

The Teck donation of $1million will support front-line trail groups in the region as they make upgrades to their sections of The Great Trail.

From the eastern shore of Kootenay Lake, The Great Trail climbs over the Purcell Mountains into the Rocky Mountain Trench and up the Elk Valley for a distance of 400 km.

After climbing Grey Creek pass, Kimberley is the travelers first destination, then, via the NorthStar Rails to Trails, it is 25 km into Cranbrook, and then on towards Elko following a route comprised of rural and forestry roads with a few trails.

This latest donation from Teck follows a $1 million gift in 2012 to support the development of sections of The Great Trail linking together the communities of Trail, Cranbrook, Kimberley, Fernie, Sparwood and Elkford.

“The Great Trail connects communities across Canada, giving Canadians and visitors the opportunity to enjoy the natural beauty that makes our country so special,” said Don Lindsay, President and CEO, Teck.

“Teck and all of our employees are proud to support this new program to improve The Great Trail and ensure it will continue to be enjoyed for generations.”

READ: Teck donates $1 million to College of the Rockies

After 25 years of tireless efforts, The Great Trail was connected across Canada in 2017. In British Columbia, The Great Trail measures over 3,400 kilometres and showcases the dramatic landscapes that are unique to the province.

Trans Canada Trail (TCT) – the organization that oversees the development of The Great Trail – continues to fundraise for vital enhancement projects across the country. Converting existing roadways to greenways, making The Great Trail more accessible for people with disabilities and repairing damage caused by natural disasters are among the top priorities for improvement projects.

“Like all trails, The Great Trail needs care and maintenance in order to thrive,” said Trisha Kaplan, TCT’s Trail Development Manager, Western and Northern Canada.

“We are thrilled that Teck has chosen to support front-line Trail groups in the Kootenays with their generous gift, and we look forward to working with them to improve The Great Trail for all users.”

To be considered for funding, proposals must be for projects on sections of The Great Trail between Castlegar and Elkford, British Columbia.

Applications will be assessed on an ongoing basis until all funds have been distributed. To find out more about how to apply, contact Trisha Kaplan at tkaplan@tctrail.ca.



carolyn.grant@kimberleybulletin.com

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