New trail to keep cyclists off highway near Canmore
Cycling between Banff and Canmore is proving to be popular, but officials are concerned about a "hazardous" stretch along the Trans-Canada Highway.
A new multi-use path in Banff National Park, called the Banff Legacy Trail, opened just over a year ago. The trail has been a huge hit, said Parks Canada spokesman Mark Merchant.
"We never thought it would be this successful this early in its lifetime," he said.
Cyclists can pedal from the Bow Valley Parkway to Banff National Park's east gate.
To continue east to Canmore, cyclists have to manoeuvre almost a kilometre along the busy highway before linking up with another bike trail that runs into the town.
"People are making a dash across the Trans Canada right now," said Canmore mayor Ron Casey. "People are also riding the wrong way down the Trans Canada Highway and the wrong way across the overpass, so it really is a hazardous situation right now."
Canmore, Banff and the Alberta government have agreed to fix that gap by contributing $300,000 to extend the trail by next summer.
Officials are calling it a temporary connector trail and hope for a long-term solution to the problem.