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Sicamous-to-Armstrong Rail-Trail

Enderby & Area
Distance: 50 kilometers
Difficulty: Easier
Duration: Various
Trail Access / Features
Walk / Hike Biking Mountain Biking Snow Shoeing Cross Country Ski

Trail Notes / Current Conditions:

Recreational use of the trail is currently closed until further notice as community planning, environmental, First Nations, agricultural, and technical planning is completed. But stay tuned - its happening!

Trail Description:

Planning & Development Underway. . .

The Sicamous-to-Armstrong Rail Trail is coming!
 
On December 15, 2017, ownership of the Canadian Pacific (CP) Railway Lands (corridor) which extend from Sicamous to Armstrong was transferred to the Columbia Shuswap Regional District (CSRD) and the Regional District of North Okanagan (RDNO), as joint owners, excluding sections owned by the Splatsin. The purchase of the corridor by the CSRD and the RDNO was a strategic land acquisition, made possible through the interjurisdictional collaboration of the Splatsin of the Secwepemc First Nation, Columbia Shuswap Regional District, Regional District of North Okanagan, and all the member municipalities, with support from the Province of BC, with the intention to develop a trail for public use and enjoyment. A memorandum of understanding was entered into between the CSRD, RDNO and the Splatsin First Nation to facilitate the establishment of a continuous, non-motorized active transportation route (rail trail) along the entire corridor, from Sicamous to Armstrong. It is also an opportunity to build relationships and write a new chapter in the story of our communities together.
 
At this time, the corridor is closed to the public. Development of the rail-trail for pedestrian and bicycle use is underway through a joint Goverance and Technical Operational Committee of the Splatsin, CSRD, and RDNO partners with assistance from the Shuswap Trail Alliance together with other community partners. Planning and development of the trail includes consultation with adjacent property owners and residents, environment, First Nations, agricultural, highways, municipalities, and technical planning.
 
Thanks to successful funding announced in the spring of 2019 through the Province of BC's Rural Dividend Program and leveraged support through the Columbia Shuswap Regional District Area E and District of Sicamous' Economic Opportunity Funds, planning is moving forward quickly through a jointly appointed Splatsin/RDNO/CSRD Technical Operational Committee under direction of the Inter-Jurisdictional Rail Trail Governance Advisory Committee. The Shuswap Trail Alliance has been engaged by the Sicamous-to-Armstrong Rail Corridor Governance Advisory to adminster the day-to-day operations of the project design and planning stages with the Technical Operational Committee.
 
Planning for the rail trail includes assessments for First Nations archeological and cultural heritage values, geotechnical, rock scaling, water drainage, erosion, and environmental management, as well as structural, safety, road crossings, and agricultural considerations. As well, the intergovernment partners are working on developing crossing and lease agreements for adjacent properties, businesses, and agricultural operators. Consultation with adjacent agricultural operators will be initiated through the Agricultural Land Commission upon formal submission of an application that should be ready in the early fall of 2019. And public information sessions will be scheduled in the fall of 2019 as well.

The greenway trail corridor travels through spectacular Mara Lake, the Shuswap River, and Fortune Creek passing through forests, lake vistas, farmland, and a series of rural communities. It is home of the Splatsin of the Secwepemc First Nation who are working with all the communities along the corridor to build relationships and unfold the true story of its place within Secwepemc First Nation Territory.

Consider making a tax-deductable donation to the Sicamous-to-Armstrong Rail Trail Reserve Fund through the Shuswap Trail Alliance by clicking the DONATION button above and clearly marking your donation RAIL-TRAIL, and watch for future links to the rail-trail greenway corridor between Vernon and Kelowna, and south to Osoyoos to come.

For updates check the recent media releases: July 29/2019, June 24/2019April 4/2019, Jan 9/2018

For an overview of the Rail-Trail vision and preliminary concept design including the link with the Central and South Okanagan Rail-Trail initiatives, check out the presentation brief here And for a more detailed glimpse of the Rail Trail project, check out the Preliminary Concept Design Report here. Be sure to let your local leadership know you support them in this important work of acquiring, building, and maintaining the corridor as an asset for future generations.

Also - be sure to visit the Okanagan Rail-Trail Initiative now open between Vernon and Kelowna for a taste of what's to come.  We're all working together to see these two new sections of Rail-Trail link up with similar trail efforts in the South Okanagan (Trails to the Okanagan and the KVR Rail Trail). Imagine: riding a bicycle from Sicamous to Osoyoos...not so crazy an idea anymore! 
 

 

Access:

The communities of Sicamous, Mara, Grindrod, Enderby, Splatsin, and Armstrong form anchor trailheads along the Rail-Trail greenway.

Warnings:

Recreational use of the trail is currently closed until further notice as community planning, environmental, First Nations, agricultural, and technical planning is completed. But stay tuned - its happening! Once open, trail users do so at their own risk, must obey all signage, and avoid closed sections.

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