Non-motorized Multi-Use Trails Masterplans for Western Newfoundland
Corner Brook, Newfoundland

Newfoundland’s second largest city, Corner Brook is an ideal launching center for all of the many amazing outdoor adventures that the western side of this beautiful province has to offer.

Clearly this statement is echoed by various other outdoor enthusiasts including our own Trail Care Crew and Rocky Mountain sponsored rider Andreas Hestler. A series of events may very well have (inadvertently) given that last little extra push that sparked IMBA’s latest series of projects.

How so you may ask? Back in 2010 Andreas Hestler traveled to Corner Brook with Mike Jones and pro photographer Jordan Manley to ride bikes on the amazing terrain that this part of the country has to offer. What they ended up discovering was that for all the “primo” terrain there were not as many trails, let alone mountain bike specific ones, as the one might think. So they rode what they could find, (maybe) made up a couple of lines for that one epic shot over the ocean and then summed it all up in an nice article. That article* ended up being published in five different bike magazines around the world. Suddenly there was this internationally growing awareness that Newfoundland has amazing terrain for mountain biking and need for trails which highlight the amazing landscape and culture were in order. That demand, in correlation with discussions held with the Trail Care Crew during an impromptu visit in 2010 got the ball rolling with the city of Corner Brook, the Province and more.

Enter IMBA Canada Trail Solutions. Over the course of the month of June, I scouted countless kilometers of diverse terrain in and around Corner Brook in order to develop a complete trail system. Slated as a non-motorized multi-use the proposed trail system is approximately fifty kilometers of new trail which integrates with what existing trail is found in the area to create an experience that could easily keep any hardcore rider happy and busy for a week (at minimum). It may not have the massive elevation changes of western Canada but it certainly has geological gnarliness to rival anything BC or Alberta has to offer with sufficient topography to burn the legs and lungs.

In the fall, the IMBA Trail Care Crew stopped in once more to help the West Coast Mountain Bike Association put shovel to dirt with the first section of the new trail system situated right near the center of town. Check out what the Crew had to say here.

To date, the West Coast Mountain Bike Association has managed to complete approximately the first kilometer of trail before the snow began to fly. With the Corner Brook masterplan being reviewed this winter, things will be gearing up for a fantastic spring of building what will undoubtably become one of eastern Canadian’s premiere riding destinations.

I’ll be heading back to western Newfoundland in the fall to continue working with land managers as Gros Morne National Park. Located just one hour’s drive from Corner Brook, the Park has shown interests in joining in this venture to turn this area in a premiere attraction for mountain bikers and trail enthusiasts alike!

Huge thank you’s have to go out to everyone that has assisted IMBA with this project to date. The hospitality and enthusiasm has been unprecedented. A special shout out to Peter Ollerhead, Becky Newton and family for all their assistance and kindness. These fantastic folk own and operate both the local bike shop, Cycle Solutions, and two of the local coffee shops (complete with roasterie), Brewed Awakening so check them out. Needless to say it was a caffeine fueled cycling adventure with top notch people!

*Andreas Hestler story courtesy of Dirt Rag Magazine & Ryders Eyewear.