The hard working Sunshine Coast Trail volunteers have been very busy putting up new signage – a part of Tourism Powell River’s Signage Project. Funded by the City of Powell River and the PR Regional District, a new street map of the City of Powell River – has been installed on the wall of the Mowat Bay washrooms.
Just down below the washrooms around the bottom of the bay you will also notice the Sunshine Coast Trail sign where the trail continues eastward, then north up through the new addition to the park. The City purchased the lot a couple of years ago to help secure the trail route that was pioneered by Tony Mathews.
Mathews built the trail to Haywire Bay by himself during 1987 on weekends and on some days when his shift was over at the mill. When he reached Lost Creek near Haywire Bay he recruited the help of three friends, Roger Taylor, Roy Hewitt, and Jim Koleszar to help him build a bridge across the creek.
The lot at start of the trail in Mowat Bay belonged to the mill who ended up logging it partially, and then it was sold to a private individual who also logged some more trees leaving a few, and closing access to the trail. Hikers then had to walk through parts of Cranberry and add a couple kilometres to their trip before hooking up with the SCT again.
After a few years the investor sold the land to the City which wanted to re-establish the Sunshine Coast Trail (Tony’s section), and at the same time enlarge Mowat Bay Park. Thanks to the City hikers can now use the old route again that had become off limits for a few years. The BOMB Squad and PAWS have maintained the trail over the years, and now students from Brooks are also getting involved and are learning to do trail maintenance and improvements.
Certain sections are somewhat rugged with rock and roots sticking out and the students will smoothen and level the tread of the trail and make it easier to hike. They will work together with PAWS members to make the trail more user-friendly and provide good access from town (Mowat Bay) to the headquarters of the OLC (Outdoor Learning Centre) at the southern end of Haywire Bay. Last month volunteers from the First Credit Union and PAWS spent a few hours one Saturday to brush out and clean up the newly re-established section of the SCT up from Mowat Bay.
Thanks to the Sunshine Coast Trail’s blogsite for the information and photo.