A picture of the north shore of Vaseux Lake. Water from the Okanagan Falls treatment plant is released into the river, which flows into Vaseux Lake. Tara Bowie/Black Press

A picture of the north shore of Vaseux Lake. Water from the Okanagan Falls treatment plant is released into the river, which flows into Vaseux Lake. Tara Bowie/Black Press

Vaseux Lake Stewardship Association concerned over proposed trail location

The association does not want to see a multi-use path on the western side of the lake

The Vaseux Lake Stewardship Association is calling for more local consultation when it comes to a potential bike trail in the area.

The association issued the release on Nov. 10, questioning the trail’s proposed location along the west side of the lake on the former KVR corridor.

No draft plan has yet been devised for the trail, which was the subject of conversations between the RDOS, province and a representative of the Trails of the Okanagan Society during the recent Union of B.C. Municipalities conference in September.

READ MORE: Multi-use trail proposed for Vaseaux Lake area

According to the RDOS, those discussions by the society were not done with their knowledge, and that following the September meeting the province had agreed that further analysis needed to be done on a proposed

The Trails of the Okanagan Society cited a 2019 environmental review of the area commissioned by Recreation Sites and Trails B.C. as part of the proposal and in discussions with media following the discussion.

The Vaseux Lake Stewardship Association argued that the 2019 study, which was 10-pages long, contradicts and fails to take into account environmental impacts that were found as part of a 203-page environmental study prepared for the provincial government in 2018.

The association noted that part of the 2019 study included a three day visit to the area that did not see any endangered species.

What the report fails to note is that these endangered species are often limited in number and rarely sighted. The observation period also did not take into account species migration and lifecycle emergence at that time of year as well as weather factors, said the Vaseux Lake Stewardship Association.

The release called for such a trail to be better sited along the eastern side of the lake nearer to the highway, and for more consultation with local stakeholders including Indigenous bands and environmental groups such as the Canadian Wildlife Service and the Nature Trust of BC.

More detailed information on the state and background to the trail are set to come from the RDOS later this week.

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