Road to the top of Jesmond Mountain where the new trail will start and end at the Jesmond fire lookout tower. At an elevation of about 1,980 metres, the tower is located on a very exposed ridge where winds in excess of 120 km/h have been recorded. (Thomas Schoen photo)

Wheels in motion for mountain biking trail project near Clinton

Project to provide immediate employment while resulting in new trail on Jesmond Mountain

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

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 Limited (SXDC).

“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.”

SXDC general manager Clayton Harry said SXDC is excited about the project which they believe will support the Big Bar Guest Ranch they had purchased one and a half years ago.

“This is the first of this type of project for us, but we view it as a start,” Harry said.

“We have done work in the area on the snowmobile trails and hiking trails in the Big Bar area.”

Besides being involved with the tourism industry through Big Bar Guest Ranch, which has provided accommodations and meals to crews working at the site of the Big Bar landslide, SXDC is also very active in the forest industry.

“We look to play a role in the local economy any way we can,” Harry said.

“You can expect to see a lot more from us in the future.”

Do you have a comment about this story? email:

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

EmploymentFirst NationsTrails

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Citing stability, B.C. Premier calls snap election for Oct. 24

John Horgan meets with Lieutenant Governor to request vote

Williams Lake First Nation inks historic cannabis deal with B.C. government

The agreement paves the way for WLFN to sell cannabis to the government, and open stores across B.C.

Cariboo Regional District hopes to build low mobility trail at Esler Sports Complex

The regional district is applying for federal funding for trail construction and site upgrades

Low-mobility access at Mountain Spruce Community Park

Thanks to a grant from the Cariboo Regional District, the pathways around… Continue reading

COVID-19: 4 more deaths, 366 new cases in B.C. since Friday

A total of 8,208 people in B.C. have tested positive for COVID-19 since January

First full day of B.C.’s election campaign begins amid COVID-19 pandemic

B.C. Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson and the Green party’s Sonia Furstenau criticized John Horgan’s decision

RCMP issue two $2,300 COVID fines at same Metro Vancouver vacation rental within 24 hours

Cpl. Mike Kalanj said it was ‘quite frankly appalling’ to see parties breaking COVID-19 rules

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Here’s how voting amid a pandemic will happen in B.C.

Elections BC has worked with the provincial health office to determine safety protocols for voting

B.C. privacy commissioner will hear First Nations complaints about COVID

The hearing will rely on written submissions from the Indigenous governments as well as the Ministry of Health

Majority of Canadians support wearing masks during COVID-19, oppose protests: poll

Nearly 90 per cent felt wearing a mask was a civic duty because it protects others from COVID-19

Most Read