While we were prepping our project in Nipigon, Ontario one of the long time residents and trail advocates stopped in to see what we were up to. He was impressed at how Chad was swinging Heidi the hoe and at the style of trail we were constructing. During our conversation he asked us “How much do you guys get paid per foot?” After considering his question he answered for us. “You get paid by every happy foot that travels along your trail”. We learn something new at each visit, whether it’s the fire line technique, something interesting about the vegetation, soils or the history of the community. For us this one man’s remarks about how people experience our trail has been the most valuable lesson we’ve learnt on our journey.

Our visit in Nipigon, ON was the catalyst for a community’s great future. We were brought in by Parks Canada Lake Superior National Marine Conservation Area, but we worked alongside Trans Canada Trail, Epic Adventures and some of the community’s enthusiastic youth. It was amazing to see everyone coming together, linked by a common goal of getting trail established in their area. With lots of room for growth and many unique landscapes, Nipigon is a budding trails destination.

During our visit we managed to tag along with the Wednesday night youth group ride, cheer the kids on at the Friday Night Pump Track Races and participate in the 14th Annual Hike for Health. For a small community they have lots of exciting trail related events happening and many active community members.

We would like to thank the vibrant Parks Canada crew, including Sylvio Pelletier, for working with us and the community so closely. A big shout out to our friend Mike Elliott at Epic Adventures for bringing mountain biking to his community and getting so many kids(of all ages!) involved in the sport. Thanks again to Trans Canada Trail staff Sean and Kirsten for participating in the workshop and supporting another important community in their trail development.