West side trail closures 'temporary' 

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Jackson and Kunzweiler have already hired Chris Markle, WORCA’s trail contractor, to scout out the land and determine how to best realign the trails. Markle is well known for his work on Kill Me Thrill Me and Foreplay (formerly known as Secret Trail), as well as his work in restoring and enhancing Whistler’s existing trail network.

Once a map of the alternative routes has been completed and the municipality approves the overall development plan, it will posted on the WORCA Web site, at www.worca.com. The development plans went through a third reading in June, and Hamm believes that the developers and municipality are close to reaching an agreement.

Once that agreement has been reached, Markle will begin building the alternative mountain bike routes almost immediately, for completion in spring of 2002.

The northern section of Danimal will remain the same until a point just before Scotia Creek. The trail will then begin to climb up and around Beaver Lake, joining up with the Beaver Pass trail.

One small section of Beaver Pass will be removed to make way for a three way intersection in the subdivision, and it will continue up before merging with Danimal.

Around the other side of Beaver Lake, the new section of trail will connect with an uphill section that will bring riders back to the south section of Danimal. The middle section of Danimal will be permanently closed.

The bottom section of 99er, a popular downhill route, will also be permanently closed below Beaver Lake, but will rejoin with Beaver Pass/Danimal if riders continue uphill to the south section. The top part of 99er will also be improved by trail builders.

The Flank Trail and entrance to Lower Sproat won’t be affected by the development.

"It’s our intention, even after this development is finished, to continue to work with WORCA on other initiatives through the valley, to support other trail development, and to help subsidize some of these projects," says Hamm.

WORCA president Keith Bennett says he is impressed with the plan.

"I think one of our main goals has always been trail advocacy and maintaining the trails we have to keep them open," Bennett says. "Duane and his development team have been fantastic throughout the process. They’re taking trail issues seriously."

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