The province has signed an agreement with a landowner adjacent to the Shubenacadie Canal to create a formal portage route for paddlers between Lake Thomas and Fletchers Lake in Fall River.

The deal was announced Monday. Natural Resources Minister Zach Churchill credited property owner Agnes Garnett for agreeing to give up claims of squatter’s rights on a sliver of land that’s long been used by the public.

The province is also chipping in $35,000 to help the Shubenacadie Canal Commission manage and maintain the canal.

"This land agreement and the province's funding for the canal commission will help everyone better enjoy this unique historic waterway," Churchill said in a news release.

The province had come under pressure from the canal commission and paddlers to make sure public access remained. Garnett had applied for adverse possession, but has said she didn't believe that would restrict public access.

The Department of Natural Resources now plans to trim trees, widen the water access steps, post signs and plant shrubs at the spot.

Shubie canal portage

This map, released by the Department of Natural Resources, shows the portage route by Lock 4 of the Shubenacadie Canal. (Department of Natural Resources)