Members of the Summerland Trans Canada Trail Society invited candidates for mayor and councillor roles to walk a portion of the trail on Thursday. The purpose of the hike was to explain the importance of the trail and the needs of the trail society.

Trail society seeks new council’s support

Members of the Trans Canada Trail Society want the next municipal council to understand the importance of the trail in the community.

Members of the Summerland Trans Canada Trail Society want the next municipal council to understand the importance of the trail in the community.

On Thursday, trail society members led 13 of the candidates for mayor and councillor positions on a hike along a portion of the trail in the Prairie Valley area.

“We have one of the nicest parts of the trail right in town,” said Henry Sielmann, president of the Summerland Trans Canada Trail Society.

Summerland’s portion of the trail extends from the Trout Creek trestle bridge to Osprey Lake, a distance of around 50 kilometres.

Much of this is along the railway bed.

Sielmann said the portion of the trail in Summerland is well used by individuals, running and hiking groups and others.

There are also economic benefits from tourism, Sielmann said, explaining that efforts are being made to promote cycle tourism in the South Okanagan.

He said there is a need to improve portions of the trail, especially near the Fenwick trailhead. Signs identifying the trail also need to be improved, he said.

In the future, the trail society would also like to see the trail extend to Penticton.

At present, there is a 14-kilometre gap between Summerland and Penticton which has not been resolved.