After three years of dedicated work by the members and volunteers of the Nakusp Trails Society, The Kuskanax Mountain Trail (also known as Mac’s Trail) celebrated its grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony on August 10.
Over 30 eager hikers, including Nakusp Trail Society board members, Nakusp Village Councilor Ulli Mueller and the honourable mayor Karen Hamling attended the opening then embarked en-masse to enjoy the hike itself.
Trail board member Barb Chwachka pre-empted the ribbon cutting by discussing the inception of the society and described the three-year process of actualizing the Kuskanax trail. Chwachka acknowledged that Bill Barrow was the headwaters of the society proposal and was instrumental in organizing the first planning session in 2011. The first session attracted local like-minded hikers, including Barry Rein, who brought the society invaluable information that was needed to begin work on the Kuskanax trail: GPS coordinates and a tentative trail route. The society was struck and assumed stewardship over the other Nakusp trails.
Over the course of three years the society received solid, ongoing support from the community through the community initiatives in affected areas sessions. “So all of the thanks need to go to the community because they made this trail a reality,” Chwachka shared.
The Kuskanax Mountain Road Trail is a challenging five to six hour return hike that climbs over 930 metres in elevation.
Head maintenance organizer Wulf Mense (who is the driving force of the maintenance crew) shared his own name for the trail during the opening: “I call it the Nakusp Grind. It is a very challenging trail. People have to be fit, but it is a challenge. And maybe in the future we can include this trail in the Sufferfest program.”