New Brunswick

Merry Christmas skiers: Large grant given for trails around Killarney Lake

Christmas has come early for skiers in the Fredericton area as $200,000 will go to create and improve cross country ski trails around Killarney Lake.

Money will go to creating 9 kilometres of ski trail and improving existing paths

The money will go to improving the existing five kilometres of trail, along with adding another nine kilometres. (Philip Drost/CBC)

Christmas has come early for skiers in the Fredericton area.

The Wostawea Cross Country Ski Club has received a grant of $200,000 that will go towards cross country ski trails around Killarney Lake.  

The money will help create an additional nine kilometres of trails, along with widening the existing trail. Half of that trail has already been made. 
John Ball, president of the Wostawea Cross Country Ski Club, hopes these new trails will get more people out cross country skiing. (Philip Drost/CBC)

The Wostawea Cross Country Ski Club has been pushing for the funding for the past three years.

"These will be...the best trails in this part of the province," said John Ball, president of the Wostawea Cross Country Ski Club.

"They will allow us to host events. They will allow us to attract skiers from far and wide to come here for competitions or just for fun."

Who uses these trails?

The city started work in the fall and skiers are already using it, including Paralympian Louis Fortin.

"They're taking advantage of the terrain, so there's a lot more of uphills and downhills and sharp turns, which is the same as you would find in a race course," said Fortin.

Funding for the new trails at Killarney Lake will come from all levels of government. (Philip Drost/CBC)
"So it's perfect for training for me and getting ready for the racing season."

The money is coming from provincial, federal, and municipal levels of government.

The federal government, through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, is giving $91,131 to the project. The provincial government is giving $20,000 and Fredericton will put in $75,000. $14,869 is coming from Wostawea.

Fortin said this is going to mean he won't have to travel to find good trails for training.

Ball hopes the improvements will attract more skiers from the city and around the province.

"These trails are going to meet international competition standards as well as be great trails for any recreational skier to enjoy themselves on," said Ball.

"We have a great winter here in Fredericton, but it's a long one with lots of snow, and cross country skiing is certainly the best way I know to enjoy the winter."

The work on the rest of the trails will be done through the city, as it is city land being used.

About the Author

Philip Drost is a reporter with CBC New Brunswick.