A new trail for skiers, snowshoers and more is opening along the Ottawa River today.
The Sir John A. Macdonald Winter Trail runs along the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway from the Canadian War Museum to Westboro Beach.
It’s a partnership between the Westboro Beach Community Association and the National Capital Commission, with help from Kitchissippi councillor Jeff Leiper and Dave Adams of the Nakkertok Ski Club.
“Growing up, Gatineau Park was really the only real ski area to be had but if I could get this inner-city facility up and running, everybody gets a chance to get cross-country skis on or [use] some other mode of transportation,” said Adams, the ski club’s trails and facilities co-ordinator.
Adams told In Town and Out host Giacomo Panico on Friday the trail has one track groomed for skiing and a second for snowshoers, snow bikers and walkers.
“[This means] accessibility to the river in the winter months,” he said.
“This is a time where the river is not well-utilized, there’s not a lot of people out there and I hope this winter trail gets people out there.”
Adams said it’s opening late in the winter as a pilot project because they had to make the idea work for the different stakeholders, but they hope to make it a permanent trail.
Parking is available at the Canadian War Museum, the Champlain Bridge and Kitchissippi Lookout, but you can also access it from LeBreton, Bayview and Dominion transit stations.
Adams said they’ve talked to the Canadian War Museum about getting racks to store visitor’s skis next season.