Help shape trails of the future

Headshot of Shannon Smith
Shannon SmithAlbany Advertiser
A cyclist enjoys the view of Princess Royal Harbour.
Camera IconA cyclist enjoys the view of Princess Royal Harbour. Credit: Tourism WA

Now is the time to have your say on the Great Southern Regional Trails Master Plan and influence which trails will be developed in the region in the next decade.

The plan includes a trail linking Albany’s Historic Whaling Station with The Gap, plus a network of mountain-bike trails throughout the lower Great Southern.

This is the first time the master plan and proposed trail projects will be available to the public.

Great Southern Centre for Outdoor Recreation Excellence held workshops from March to May to get ideas for the project and ended up with 200 suggestions.

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GSCORE’s Lenore Lyons said the public comment period was a crucial step.

“We’ve had to narrow that down to a manageable number focusing on four key issues — market potential, significance, opportunity and deliverability.

“But before we move forward with the next steps, we need to make sure that the community supports the proposed trails.”

She said they were hoping for well-considered feedback on what people thought about the chosen trails.

“We are very excited about the potential to develop two new hiking trails along our coastline — one from Albany’s Historic Whaling Station to The Gap in Torndirrup National Park, and the other from Greens Pool to Lights Beach in William Bay National Park,” she said.

“The community consultation also showed very strong interest in establishing mountain biking trails and cycle touring trails.

“Cycle trails are currently a significant gap in our regional trail offering and there is high demand from both residents and visitors.”

The plan proposes mountain-bike trails in Mt Barker, Denmark and Porongurup National Park

Other long-term projects include rail trail developments along the rail corridors in the central and northern parts of the Great Southern, a cycle touring route through the Stirling Range National Park, a dual-use trail from Little Grove to Frenchman’s Bay, and a network of recreation nodes throughout the Great Southern Treasures Drive Trail.

The plan is at gscore.com.au.

The public comment period closes on January 19, 2020.

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