BARRIERE - New and old trails will be overhauled as plans for trail restoration in the Barriere area move forward this summer.
The majority of the trails already exist in the Fishtrap recreation area southwest of Barriere and heading towards Bonaparte Lake and just require some brushing out.
Lower North Thompson Community Forest Society Executive Director Mike Francis notes many are also historic or First Nations trails. The hope is to clear some 180-190 kilometres of trail this summer, along with establishing some new trails in the Fishtrap area.
“Some trails they go through pretty quick, others are a lot of work and it slows things down,” Francis says.
The crews will also be maintaining existing geocache sites in the area, many of which have been placed over the past two years, though Francis says there is a possibility for a few more to be placed.
“We placed a lot in 2012, and a few more last year,” he says. “The trails are historic, so some of it is based on that, others on the route Mantracker took a few years ago (while filming in the area).”
Four people will get experience in the forestry industry through a job creation partnership with the forest society and $143,000 in government funding.
“The participants are gaining valuable work experience in GPS and computer mapping, silviculture and trail restoration throughout the duration of the partnership,” Francis says.
The participants will get 39 weeks of job experience as they work to re-establish and create trails, overhaul a campsite, repair fencing and plant 2,000 tree seedlings, treat invasive weeds and maintain 120 geocache sites.
They will work with chainsaws, GPS and computer mapping as they earn industry and Work Safe B.C. certification.
“This program is giving me the experience and confidence with power saws I need. I feel a lot more comfortable applying for a saw operating job now,” participant John Narcisse says. “I can also do maintenance and minor repairs to the saws now.”
Another 100 projects or so have been funded through this type of partnership with more than 340 participants benefitting from the work experience gained.
Geocaching is a treasure hunt style game using global positioning system (GPS) device.
To contact a reporter for this story, email Jennifer Stahn at email@example.com or call 250-819-3723. To contact an editor, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-718-2724.