RDN completes expansion to improve horse rider access to the Great Trail

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The Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) has completed an expansion to the Timberlands Road parking area to better accommodate horse trailer access and turn-around. 

The expansion was developed in consultation with the Back Country Horsemen of BC, Central Vancouver Island Chapter as the area is a popular access point for the Great Trail, formerly the Trans Canada Trail, by equestrians in addition to other recreational user groups. The larger parking lot provides equestrians with a designated area to safely unload horses from their trailers.

“As access to the back country and our regional parks and trails becomes more desirable as an outdoor experience, the equestrian community’s accessibility is often challenged and restricted with limited horse trailer parking,” said Lynn deVries, chair of Back Country Horsemen of BC, Central Vancouver Island Chapter. “We were thrilled to have the opportunity to work collaboratively with the RDN in securing this dedicated horse trailer parking, which is of significant importance to equestrians.”

The Timberlands Road area has been enjoyed by the equestrian community for over four decades and with increased use by all groups, demand for parking spaces has increased significantly, the RDN said. The additional parking area now provides approximately 150 feet of dedicated trailer parking and has reduced the need for equestrians to park on the adjacent road. To make the lot even more equestrian-friendly, the Back Country Horsemen of BC built and installed a mounting block that is filled with concrete donated by Bedrock Redi-Mix.

“I am very pleased the Back Country Horsemen and other local equestrians now have a dedicated parking and staging area with a unique mounting block from which they can begin their rides on The Great Trail,” said Maureen Young, Electoral Area C director. “This project is a great example of the RDN working together with a local organization to improve access to recreational areas.”

The Back Country Horsemen of BC is a not-for-profit society that works with land managers for trail development and access. Established in 1991, the society has 23 regional chapters and over 900 members.

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