The Valley Outdoor Association (VOA) conducts trail maintenance as a way to give back to the outdoors. These work parties are held several times each year and are a full day’s event.
The Slesse Memorial Trail
The VOA adopted the Slesse Memorial trail over 25 years ago, and most work parties take place on this trail. The trail is on the lower east slopes of Slesse Mountain located in the Chilliwack Valley area.
On December 9, 1956 Trans Canada Airlines flight 810 crashed into Slesse Mountain killing all 62 people on board. The Slesse Memorial Trail first leads to a memorial plaque commemorating those who lost their lives, and from there to a cairn holding one of the plane’s propellors. Besides hikers, the trail is used by climbers who want to access the mountain beyond the end of the trail.
Access to the trail is via the Nesakwatch Forest Service Road (FSR) which requires the use of a high clearance 4x4 vehicle.
Mount Saint Benedict Trail
In the past the VOA has also done trail maintenance work on the Mt St Benedict trail which is accessed from the Lost Creek FSR east of Stave Lake.
Trail maintenance provides the same level of exercise as a day’s hike. It involves:
- Clearing growth along the side of the trail using loppers or a gas-powered brush cutter (only for those with the correct training).
- Clearing overhead branches using hand saws.
- Clearing blown down trees using a chain saw (only for those with the correct training).
- Digging small ditches to carry water away from the trail.
- Building small bridges.
All the necessary tools are provided except for work gloves. Otherwise follow the hiking guidelines for everything else.
So, if you would like to come out and help; watch for the next work party date in the quarterly bulletin.