Welcome to the Saskatchewan Trails Association Website
Supporting Trail Development in Saskatchewan
The Saskatchewan Trails Association (STA) is now accepting individual and corporate donations for its recently developed Saskatchewan Trails Fund. Once core funding is achieved, this new trail fund will provide annual grants to local trail organizations and communities to help support trail development and maintenance projects in Saskatchewan.
If you would like to make a donation to support Saskatchewan's trails (via PayPal), please click on the above "Donate" icon.
Thank you for your support!
IN THE NEWS:
Edmund Aunger's interview with Global TV Regina at the Saskatchewan Legislative Building.
Ride the Trail Arrives in Regina
An Alberta man whose wife, Elizabeth Sovis, was killed two years ago in a horrific cycling accident, is now on the second leg of his cross-country journey, riding this summer from Edmonton to Winnipeg on the Trans Canada Trail, a distance of more than 2,750 km.
Edmund Aunger is honouring his wife and promoting her vision: she wanted to see a Trans Canada Trail that was complete and accessible and safe. “Ultimately,” he says, “it was this very problem that killed her. We were cycling on the Trans Canada Trail, while on holiday in Prince Edward Island two years ago, and we were forced to detour onto a highway. Ten minutes later, Elizabeth was struck by a drunk driver. The impact threw her body 50 metres.”
Aunger arrived in Regina on Monday, July 28, 2014, and stopped at the Saskatchewan Legislature to speak about his trip and its objectives and read a petition calling on the Saskatchewan government to complete the provincial section of the Trans Canada Trail by July 1, 2017, in time for Canada’s 150th anniversary celebrations.
“I am cycling the Trans Canada Trail from Victoria to Charlottetown in five stages. This year’s trip, the second, is from Edmonton to Winnipeg. The final leg, in 2017, will be from Ottawa to Charlottetown; I intend to arrive on July 14, the fifth anniversary of Elizabeth’s death, and lead a memorial service.”
“My goal is to promote the Trail by increasing awareness, rallying support and raising funds. And I am petitioning the provincial government. Unless it provides leadership and adopts an action plan, there will be no Trans Canada Trail in Saskatchewan.”
2014 Ride the Trail Update
Edmund Aunger and his wife of 34 years, Elizabeth Ann Sovis, regularly cycled the Trans Canada Trail (TCT) in the summer. However, a 2012 Prince Edward Island cycling trip turned tragic when the couple had to leave an unconnected portion of the TCT and travel on an unpaved shoulder of a two-lane highway where his wife was struck from behind and killed by an impaired motorist.
Aunger is now completing a Canada-wide TCT ride over five summers in his wife’s memory, while advocating for safer cycling trails in Canada.
Aunger is expected to reach Frenchman Butte, Saskatchewan on July 8, 2014. He will then cycle to all of Saskatchewan’s eight TCT pavilions. Other cyclists are encouraged to join him on the ride and donations to the TCT in his wife’s memory are welcome. You can also follow him on Twitter (@ridethetrail4) and sign his online peititon at www.ridethetrail.ca.
NTC Applications Now Being Accepted
The National Trails Coalition is now accepting funding applications for projects to be completed by December 31, 2015. The NTC is comprised of the Canadian Trails Federation, Canadian Council of Snowmobile Organizations (CCSO), and the Canadian Off-Highway Vehicle Distributors Council (COHV). It received $10 million in the last federal government budget to support trail building initiatives across Canada.
All applications must be received by August 15, 2014 and must be sent directly to firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here or visit http://www.ntc-canada.ca/application.php to download an application form.
In order to be eligible for the program, your organization must be a member in good standing with the Saskatchewan Trails Association.
Projects involving construction, upgrade, renovation or rehabilitation of multi-purpose trails, non-motorized trails, snowmobile trails and all-terrain vehicle/off-road motorcycle trails are eligible. More specifically these projects include:
- New trail construction
- Trail upgrade/improvement
- Bridge and water crossing installation and upgrade;
- Trail signage installation;
- Trail surveying and tracking; and
- Trail rehabilitation.
Click here for more details.
Advocating for Trails - Send a Letter to Your MLA
As you may be aware, the Government of Canada recently announced that a two-year, $10 million Canadian trail infrastructure program would be developed to provide grants – worth up to 50 per cent of the project’s total cost – to construct new trails, complete trail maintenance projects, construct bridge and water crossings and develop trail safety initiatives. The remaining 50 per cent of the funds will be raised by the trail groups applying for the grant program.
The STA is requesting that the Government of Saskatchewan match a percentage of the program’s funding to ensure that both small and large trail groups will be able to take part in this grant opportunity.
To increase the effectiveness of our message, we are asking all trail groups and enthusiasts in the province to send a letter to either their local MLA or the Honourable Mark Docherty, Minister of Parks, Culture and Sport indicating your support of this initiative. A sample letter that you may use as a template can be found here.
Thank you for your support of this advocacy campaign and for supporting trail development in Saskatchewan!
STA launches new poster campaign
A poster campaign promoting Saskatchewan’s trails is being launched in conjunction with Saskatchewan Trails Day. The posters will be on display at various sporting goods stores and other strategic locations across the province.
Click the images below to download high resolution copies of the posters. You can also request free copies by emailing email@example.com.
Special thanks to Saskatchewan Parks and Recreation Association (S.P.R.A.) and Saskatchewan Lotteries for supporting this campaign!
Celebrating Saskatchewan and International Trails Day - June 7
The Saskatchewan Trails Association (STA) is pleased to announce that the 2014 Saskatchewan Trails Day will be held on June 7 in conjunction with International Trails Day. The STA encourages everyone to get out and enjoy the province’s walking, hiking, cycling, hand cycling, roller blading, horseback riding and ATV trails.
This year, communities are hosting Trails Day events throughout the week to encourage more people to get out on the province’s trails. For example, the City of Weyburn is hosting a Tatagwa Parkway trail celebration on June 1 from 12:30-1:30 p.m., and Meewasin Valley Authority, in partnership with Trans Canada Trail and Parkland Trails Association, is hosting events in Saskatoon from June 5-12, including a walk along Meewasin Trail on June 7 and a Bridge City Boogie walk and run on June 8.
“Trails are a great and inexpensive way to get out and enjoy our province’s wildlife and breathtaking landscapes,” says Jo Ann Carignan Vallee, President of the STA. “Trails are also open year-round, which ensures that everyone can enjoy a healthy, active lifestyle regardless of the temperature and weather conditions outside.”
2014 Annual General Meeting
Sixteen STA members took part in the AGM on Saturday, April 26, 2014 at the Canalta Hotel in Assiniboia, SK where they heard updates from the STA and its members on their activities over the past year. Participants were also treated to a tour of the Shurniak Art Gallery following the meeting.
The STA would like to welcome the newest additions to its Board of Directors: Jo Ann Carnigan-Vallee,
President; Arnold Giddings, Secretary; and Curt Schroeder, Director.
The returning board members are: Saul Lipton, Vice-President; Sharon Elder, Treasurer; Alan Otterbein, John Meed and Glenn Hymers, Directors; and Ex-Officio Members: Joe Milligan, Saskatchewan
Ministry of Parks, Culture and Sport, and Andrew Exelby, Saskatchewan Parks and Recreation Association.
Thank you all for continuing to support the STA and Saskatchewan’s trail network.
Following the board’s election, two new resolutions were passed. The resolutions requested that the STA
lobby the provincial government to: 1) build trails near any future highway bypasses that are constructed in
high traffic municipalities, and 2) match federal funding that was recently announced for the National Trails
Coalition to ensure that all trail groups can benefit from this grant opportunity. The STA will pursue both of these matters this year.
Check out the STA's newly redesigned newsletter for more information and highlights from this year's AGM.
Discretionary Funding Grant Recipients Announced
The Saskatchewan Trails Association (STA) has announced that $3,600 will be distributed to eight groups in the province through the STA Discretionary Funding Grant program. The grant will cover up to 60 per cent of the total costs required to maintain and upgrade existing trails in the province.
Grants will be awarded to the Whiteswan Snow Hawks snowmobile club to reroute a trail; City of Humboldt to create a seating node along a trail connecting the downtown to Centennial Park; Timber Trails Sno-Riders Co-operative Ltd. to place signs and sign posts along their trails; Parkland Trans Canada Trail Association to place a bench and plaque along the Destination Trail in Saskatoon; Lakeland Snowmobile Club to clean and restore trails damaged by an ice storm; Resort Village of Manitou Beach to place signage and trail markers along a recently upgraded gravel trail; Ness Creek Cultural and Recreational Society Inc. to upgrade trail maps, survey a new trail with GPS, replace existing trail markers, and build a larger trailhead kiosk; and Candle Lake Trails Association Group to clear and expand an existing boardwalk.
“This grant program will go a long way to help with the upkeep of trails in the province,” says Cathy Watts, President of the STA. “The trail groups receiving this funding have shown their commitment to properly maintaining and enhancing their trails so that they will continue to be enjoyable for all users.”
Click here to read the full media release.
Federal Government Announces New NTC Funding
The Saskatchewan Trails Association (STA) is delighted by the federal government’s recent decision to provide an additional $10 million over two years to the National Trails Coalition (NTC). This funding will help maintain and develop both motorized and non-motorized trails across the country, ensuring high quality and low cost recreational opportunities for all Canadians while furthering Canada’s economic growth and prosperity.
To read the full media release, click here.
The Great Saskatchewan GPS Challenge
Saskatchewan Trails Association recently completed an inventory of all trails in the province. The information has been submitted to Tourism Saskatchewan and is now on their website, which can be found at http://www.sasktourism.com/things-to-do/trails.
This is a significant step toward promoting our trails, and we are asking for your help to maintain the information. If there are any enhancements, closures, etc., please let us know so that we are able to update the website.
Tourism Saskatchewan has also asked for additional info of your trails for the website. We would appreciate any photos of the trails that you are able to provide. Good quality photographs are very important for the website, especially if the trailhead is difficult to find. Any comments on driving to or finding the trailhead that will assist trail users would also be appreciated.
Tourism Saskatchewan would also like to have GPS data on your trail heads, but would prefer to have data on the entire trail if possible. Providing GPS data will allow trail users to find your trail with their GPS unit. GPS data can be obtained by using a GPS unit, which can be borrowed from Saskatchewan Parks and Recreation Association. Booking information is online at spra.sk.ca.
How to Gather Trailhead Information
Gathering accurate GPS coordinates is essential for populating the Saskatchewan Tourism trail web data base. The information below will assist with this task.
When using a GPS to mark a coordinate, begin by turning the unit on prior to arriving at the trailhead so that it properly connects with satellites. It is best to mark a waypoint by approaching the trailhead from multiple directions and watching your accuracy or EPE readings on the GPS. Do this 5-7 times and select the waypoint with the lowest EPE average; meaning ĎGive greater weight to a waypoint taken with three metres EPE than the one at 10 metres EPE.í Some GPS units have the ability to take an average of a set of coordinates, others do not. Be aware that during bad weather or in an area with lots of tall trees, the accuracy of the GPS unit may be poor.
Google Earth Coordinates
“If you donít know what Google Earth is or have never used it, you may want to skip this section.” Coordinates for a specific location can also be gathered using Google Earth by first finding the trailhead on Google Earth and putting the cursor on the trailhead. Youíll notice that wherever the cursor is on the map, the latitude and longitude coordinates for that point will appear at the bottom of the page. You can also place a marker at the location and the coordinates will appear in the summary sheet. The coordinates may not appear in the same format as on your GPS, but donít be alarmed.
If you need to convert the coordinates from Google Earth or your GPS to another format, go to http://boulter.com/gps. Please note that when using this site, the N and W need to be in front of the coordinates, otherwise the conversion will not work.
Coordinates and photos can be emailed to Pat Rediger at firstname.lastname@example.org. Phone 306-522-9326.
Thank you for your consideration. This is an opportunity to support our trails and show what Saskatchewan has to offer.
Send us your photos and stories
Have you had a great experience on the trails? Please send us your pictures and stories. We'd love to share them with the rest of the trails community both on our website and our Twitter account (@Sk_Trails).
We recently received this photo from the Saskatchewan All-Terrain Vehicle Association (SATVA).