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Posted: July 29, 2021

Racehorse Pass removed from decommissioning list

Recreation groups, public and government work together to keep iconic trail open

Following a stakeholder consultation process, the Racehorse Pass Trail between B.C. and Alberta has been removed from the government’s list of candidate roads to be decommissioned under the Cumulative Effects Management Framework project this summer.

It’s a great win for recreation groups in both the Elk Valley and Crowsnest Pass area.

“This is a good news success story of the government, public, and trail groups from two provinces working cooperatively together to identify and preserve high-value recreation opportunities,” said Donegal Wilson, Executive Director for the British Columbia Snowmobile Federation.

Justin Boehm, President of the Fernie Snowmobile Association (FSA) added, “This is the result of the diligent work of the Elkford ATV Club, the Elkford Snowmobile Association, the Fernie Snowmobile Association, and many other clubs and individuals who took the time to follow due process and provide their feedback. And, to the government for sitting down and listening to that feedback and looking at options to keep the public trail open while also meeting their environmental targets.”

Last year, the FSA and partners were able to save two additional high-value recreation trails in the Corbin area from closure under the same process.

The FSA was formed in 1990 as a local unified voice for winter motorized recreation with a mission to maintain, secure, and protect these vibrant and diverse recreation opportunities for the town and her visitors.

Snowmobiling contributes over $11.6 million in annual economic output to Fernie.

The Elk Valley Cumulative Effects Management Framework Project aims to reduce habitat fragmentation by decommissioning several kilometres of roads and trails each summer. Roads that ‘pass’ the consultation phase are fully recontoured by heavy machinery, culverts pulled, access ditched/signed, and the area reforested.

Lead image: Racehorse Pass connecting the Elk Valley with Crowsnest Pass. Photo submitted by Fernie Snowmobile Association

Fernie Snowmobile Association

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