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Lyon’s Bluff trail to be extended higher up

A popular trail on Kootenay Lake’s North Shore will be completed this summer, thanks in part to funding from the Columbia Basin Trust.

The Trust is providing $20,000, which combined with another grant, will allow the Lyon’s Bluff trail to be extended another 3.5 km.

“We’re going from about 1,800 feet to 5,000 feet so it’s quite an elevation gain to the towers,” says Friends of Pulpit Rock Society president Dave St. Denis.

“This part of the trail has been flagged and marked and needs to be slashed a little bit more. It’s cleared and people can use it, but it hasn’t been completely constructed yet. That’s the part we’re going do this summer.”

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The trail is named after the late Don Lyon, a local mountaineer who first had the idea for the trail about 12 years ago. The first portion opened last year. The trail’s development was to take some pressure off the very popular Pulpit Rock trail, which has limited parking, St. Denis says.

“It’s doing its job,” St. Denis says. “There are often times I stop in at the parking lot and there are 30 cars there [at Lion’s Bluff].”

St. Denis says the two trails appeal to different hiking abilities.

“There are people who really like Pulpit trail, being a little more gradual, if can you can call that gradual. And there are people who really like the Lyon’s Bluff trail that’s a little rougher, has a lot more rock steps and a quicker elevation gain.”

In a separate project, the society is receiving about $74,4000 from the provincial government to develop four new hiking trails near Whitewater Ski Resort, including interpretive and directional signs.

Construction will take place on the trail from the Whitewater lodge to Prospector’s Ridge and provide a trail through Bonanza and Motherlode to the top of the Summit ski trail, St. Denis said.

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