Maintaining trails has become a little bit easier for the Nakusp and Area Community Trails Society this season.
They society received a portion of the $5,060 in funding from the Nakusp and Area Community Forest (NACFOR) to help with things like maintenance. NACFOR gave the society $4,500 to begin with, which is about 90 per cent of the grant. Once the project is completed and a project completion report has been filed, the society will receive the rest of the funding.
Supporting the Trail Society is important for NACFOR.
“One of our goals for the community forest is to support recreation, and this is one of the ways we can help recreation in the area,” said Kathy Smith, president of NACFOR. “We’re quite happy to be able to help with that.
In order for funding to be approved, the board has to see if the application meets the criteria needed, such as what the funding would be for, like education or recreation for instance. They also decide if the application warrants full or partial support.
The society currently maintains 10 trails, which in itself is a big job. It’s made even bigger when maintenance is done on a volunteer basis.
While volunteers were plentiful in the beginning, they’ve dwindled a bit in the last few years.
“The volunteer basis was really good in the beginning,” said Bianca Neiderhardt, treasurer and a director for the society. “At some point six to eight people came out to help for a morning, or half a day, and it dwindled down over the years.”
Neiderhardt said the biggest chunk of work is happening right now, because the trails, along with the access roads that lead to them, are now snow free.
She pointed out the importance of maintaining clear trails for everyone in the community.
“If you go hiking and you’ve got a tree across, you can sometimes climb over, or climb under, but it’s not feasible for everybody. Not everyone has the same fitness level. They might be able to walk the distance, but they might not be able to climb up. It’s way more enjoyable to walk on a cleared trail.”