Giant’s Head plan unveiled

It’s expected construction will begin this fall on a $725,000 revitalization of the trail network on Giants Head Mountain in Summerland.

The final trail redevelopment plan is being presented to council next week, outlining multiple phases of work that will see just over six kilometres of trails improved, while a similar amount are decommissioned. Just over one kilometres of new trails will be installed.

“Since Giant’s Head Mountain Park was created in 1967, its original two apex trails have expanded into a 12 km network of dozens of trails,” the redevelopment plan states.

“The unplanned and unconstructed nature of these trails has given rise to a series of concerns over the accommodation of all user groups, the health and integrity of the sensitive ecosystems on the mountain, and ever-increasing usership.”

A study into the park found that many of the trails are redundant and have been created as shortcuts or bypasses around difficult or eroded areas. By closing those trails, the areas can be restored and resources can be focused on maintaining the key routes.

The first two phases of the plan — which are already funded — set to get underway this fall will also see improvements made to the parking situation at the main entrance on Milne Rd., new signage, guardrails and benches installed.

Phase one and two has been funded by grants from the provincial and federal governments, $100,000 from the Rotary Club raised through the Giants Head Grind. The remaining $190,000 will covered by the municipality.

According to a staff report accompanying the trail plan, the work could be sent out to tender as soon as the end of July. If all goes to plan, construction can start by September and complete by the end of the year, depending on weather. Phases three and four of the plan will be completed some time down the road.

The full trail plan can be found here.

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