Walk, Run, Roll or Paddle to celebrate Trans Canada Trail

Saskatonians, along with people across the country, are being encouraged to go off the beaten track Saturday to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Trans Canada Trail.

People encouraged to mark The Great Trail's 25th anniversary

The Great Trail is the longest trail system on the planet. (Trails BC/Facebook)

Saskatonians — along with people across the country — are being encouraged to go off the beaten track Saturday to celebrate the Trans Canada Trail.

Since 1992, the Trans Canada Trail, a not-for-proft organization, has been working with donors, partners, governments, landowners and volunteers to create a series of roadways, greenways and waterways across the country.

Today, the Trans Canada Trail, now known as The Great Trail, is the longest trail system in the world. It stretches almost 22,000 kilometres across Canada and is 93 per cent complete.

"Twenty-five years ago it was Canada's 125th birthday and visionaries came up with the idea and today the idea is a reality. It's a dream come true," said Doug Porteous, interim CEO of Meewasin Valley Authority, during an interview with CBC Radio's Saskatoon Morning.

"It's multi-use depending on the section and may allow hikers, bicyclists, horseback riders, cross country skiers, snowmobilers, canoeists. It's a wonderful thing connecting Canadians."

The Great Trail runs 20 kilometres along the Meewasin Trail through Saskatoon. It enters the city along Wanuskewin Road on the west side of the river. It runs from the Silverspring Golf Course to Whiteswan Drive and Spadina Crescent, crossing the river at Sid Buckwold Bridge until the Traffic Bridge is complete. From there the Great Trail runs along the Meewasin Trail on the east side of the river through Rotary Park, Gabriel Dumont Park, Diefenbaker Park and finally out the city by way of Chief Whitecap Park.

This year, to mark Canada's 150th anniversary, communities along the path are calling on residents to explore their own section of the route.

"Just get out sunrise to sunset. Walk, run, paddle, roll along the Meewasin Trail connecting the 20 kilometres of trail that are happening through Saskatoon," said Porteous.