Mountain Biking

Wheels in motion for mountain biking trail project near Clinton – Williams Lake Tribune

A 21-week trail project will provide immediate employment to four Indigenous people who will help develop a multi-use trail on Jesmond Mountain.

The B.C. government is providing more than $75,000 through WorkBC’s Community and Employer Partnerships program toward the project with Stswecem’c Xgat’tem Development Corporation.

“I’m really excited this is moving forward,” says managing consultant Thomas Schoen, who is the CEO of First Journey Trails.

“Because of COVID-19 we were delayed for a long time, but we still have enough time to construct one of the proposed trails.”

Read More: Trail construction put on hold in First Nations communities due to COVID-19

The job-creation partnership project will result in the four trainees being provided with the skills and experience they need from mid-August through Dec. 18 to become trail-crew professionals. Through in-class training they will also increase their opportunities for future employment, with transferable skills in forestry and fire suppression.

“It’s been a long time coming,” Schoen adds. “It’s been a seven- to eight-month lead-up in planning time to set up a job creation partnership program and work with Rec Sites and Trails to get the necessary permits.”

Once complete, the approximately six-kilometre, multi-use trail will provide users of the various rec sites within the area, as well as Big Bar Guest Ranch, with a single trek hiking trail to the Jesmond fire lookout tower.

Read More: Cattle lend Mt. Timothy helping hand as management work on upgrades for winter

Mountain bikers will also be able to use the trail as a downhill riding path from the Jesmond mountaintop.

“Being able to provide important and meaningful skill enhancement to people who need it, while also improving public spaces, is a win for everyone involved,” said Shane Simpson, Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction, in a news release. “I look forward to seeing the results of their work.”

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