CARROLLS CORNER: Volunteers with the Mastodon Trail in Carrolls Corner have finally seen their dream become reality, after years of hard work.

The grand opening of the trail, which is part of the Trans Canada Trail system now known as The Great Trail, is set for Aug. 26, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be a water slide for kids, a barbecue, bouncy castle, and even a ribbon cutting with local dignitaries such as Larry Harrison, PC MLA Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, and Coun. Steve Stretch.

Jim Reid is one of the volunteers who has been working on the trail for the past 10 years.

“A lot of the land clearing in preparation for the trail construction and trail maintenance was carried out by local volunteers,” said Reid. “We currently have a wonderful four kilometer active transportation trail which extends from the Carroll’s Corner Community Centre to the Hurshman Road in Dutch Settlement.”

What was a dream finally became reality — but it came with some great assistance from nearby National Gypsum, which donated much of the land where the first three kilometres of trail are built, and the provincial Department of Transportation & Infrastructure Renewal which allowed the group to build the last kilometre of trail on old abandonment road bed and existing highway right-of -way.

“We also are very thankful for the financial support from the municipal, provincial and federal governments,” added Reid.

He said the trail is used extensively by local residents as well as visitors to the area for walking, hiking, cycling, race events, geocaching, horseback riding and in the winter snowshoeing and cross-country skiing.

“Last year we added several benches at strategic locations along the trail route where users have a chance to recover after completing some of the steeper sections,” said Reid. “This year we are constructing a washroom about halfway along the trail and developing a picnic area.”

What are the plans for the trail system in the future?

“Plans include a natural playground with emphasis on local industry and geological features in the open area near where the washroom will be located,” he said.

Reid said they are working with the Riverlake Greenway group to develop a link from the western end of the Carrolls Corner trail through to Elmsdale. The Riverlake Greenway group is designing the routing to connect existing sections of trails which, when completed, will extend from the Halifax Harbour to Carrolls Corner.

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Patrick Healey
Pat has grown up in East Hants, having called Milford, and now Enfield home. He graduated from the journalism program at Holland College in 2001, and has spent time at newspapers in NL and Alberton and Summerside, PEI before becoming a reporter/photographer at The Weekly Press/The Laker in October 2008. He has a rescue kitty named Asha that is much loved—and spoiled. Pat is also our "social engagement guru." Check him out on twitter!