Hike NS Summit Award 2019: Garnet McLaughlin

Photo: Garnet McLaughlin celebrates his Summit Award with his family: wife Alexia, daughter Madeline, son Seth and daughter Avary.

May 2019

Hike Nova Scotia is pleased to present Garnet McLaughlin with the Hike NS Summit Award. This award recognizes outstanding leadership and commitment to the growth and development of hiking in Nova Scotia.

Over the past 20 years, Garnet has logged countless hours in the development of trails, inspiring people to take action throughout Nova Scotia to create more outdoor adventures in the development of trails and pathways.

Garnet would rather be designing and building trails but he understands community, the importance of volunteer organizations and the importance of developing strong foundations and organizations for the long term.

Often it is not about time but the commitment to find the time to chair, be a board member, show up and attend meetings, create strategic plans, write and submit grant applications and lobby when and where necessary for the protection and development of trails that does and will create long term hiking opportunities.

By profession Garnet is a trail builder and started building trails in Economy at Thomas’ Cove in the mid-nineties. He has a background in integrated resource management and understands the biodiversity of the forest and the value of protecting the resource.

In the mid-nineties Garnet returned to Nova Scotia to run a youth crew building wilderness trails in the newly designated Economy River Wilderness Area. His passion for trail building, design and mentoring is based on a strong work ethic and more importantly an ethic to give back to the community. He worked on Kenomee Canyon, Devils Bend, Escarpment trail and upgraded Thomas Cove trails which is over 30 km of trail.

As a trails coordinator for Musquodoboit Trailway Association he finished up this wilderness trail system including the North and south Granite Ridge trails along with Admiral Lake loop, Bayers Lake and Gibraltar.

Over his 20-year career Garnet has been involved with different trail planning projects across the Maritimes including Neil’s Harbour in Cape Breton, Dollar Lake Provincial Lake, Mica Hill in the Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Gros Morne National Park, Birch Cove Blue Mountain Lake, Gully Lake and Nova Scotia Nature Trust trails.

He’s done it all. He has prepared assessments, reconstruction and rehabilitation of Cape Chignecto Provincial Park while working with both his staff and staff of the park. He has hosted trail building/restoration workshops across the province with volunteer groups, schools, municipalities and provincial governments at various sites.

He was an active volunteer board member for the NS Trails Federation for almost 10 years and worked on the Great Trail (or Trans Canada Trail) in Nova Scotia.

He took part in strategic discussions on the Atlantic Canada Trails Destination process to improve the hiking experiences that would appeal to international markets.

He started his own family base company, Cobequid Consulting after the devastating effects from Hurricane Juan in 2003 to repair the damage along so many of Nova Scotia’s trails.

He leant his expertise to the design and construction of the Crowbar Lake Trails (Waverly-Salmon River Long Lake Wilderness Area), living in the woods at the time and canoeing to the job site every day.

He worked with the community to create the Kenomee Trail Society serving as volunteer president and has been involved in many capacities with the society since 2001 when he was also balancing his volunteer role as fire chief of the Economy Fire Brigade. He is back as Chair again in 2019 volunteering for Kenomee.

In 2007 Garnet was involved in the creation of Cobequid Eco-Trails Society (CE-TS), focusing on the development and promotion of non-motorized trails, with an emphasis on environmental appreciation and stewardship. Garnet was their first Chair. This community based group designed and developed the Gully Lake Trail system creating over 30 kms of hiking trails within the Gully Lake Wilderness Area.

At the time it was one of the newest wilderness trail system in the province. Garnet was president, volunteer builder and trail builder throughout the process working with many dedicated volunteers which lead to hiking pathways such as Rogart Mountain Trail, Earltown Lake and Portage Trail to name only a few.

He has worked with the Cape to Cape Trail group that is part of the vision of a 400 km hiking trail through five counties which will include many of the trails he has helped shape throughout Colchester and Cumberland counties.

Garnet has been on the Hike Nova Scotia board since 2009 and is the immediate past president of Hike NS serving for 5 years. Garnet has been instrumental in providing strategic leadership that allowed the association to grow and expand.

He has led many hiking and snowshoeing events including  in Kenomee, Gully Lake, Beaver Mountain, Keppoch and Trenton Park trails to name only a few and his understanding of nature makes him a natural for sharing forest knowledge.

He has presented at many recreation conferences and seminars to share key messages around protecting our forests, setting aside land for biodiversity and promoting active lifestyles through the creation of quality sustainable hiking trails.

At the NS Trails Conference held at Cornwallis several years ago, he worked to design and create a legacy that would enhance the Mickey Hill Provincial Park so that delegates could learn trail building techniques on the ground and in doing so created a new section of hiking trail.

Garnet is a family man that wants to pass on his love for the outdoors and the importance of connecting with nature to both his family and others and it is for this and many other reasons mentioned that Hike NS wishes to acknowledge Garnet’s outstanding leadership and commitment in the development of hiking opportunities in Nova Scotia.

Thank you for your dedication, passion and for your expertise in inspiring communities around Economy, across Colchester County and Cumberland and, indeed, across Nova Scotia.

Hike NS is pleased to present Garnet McLaughlin the 2019 Summit Award.

Congratulations Garnet!

 

Hiking Summit Features South Shore Trails

Hiking Summit at Oak Island, Western Shore, a celebration of hiking culture in NS

About 200 people with an interest in hiking, walking and snowshoeing, will converge on Western Shore, on the South Shore, from May 24 to 26, 2019 for the eighth annual Nova Scotia Hiking Summit. Hosted by Hike NS along with Events Lunenburg County and Oak Island Resort and Conference Centre, the Summit is a celebration of Nova Scotia’s hiking culture. It includes sharing best practices, stories, networking and hiking. Attendees include avid hikers, hiking clubs, trail groups, provincial government, municipalities and others.

Platinum sponsor is O’Regan’s South Shore Subaru. Gold sponsors are the Municipality of Chester and the District of Lunenburg. Silver sponsor is the NS Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage. Bronze sponsors are Clif Bar, Scotiabank, Parks Canada, Atlantick, Saltbox Brewing Company, NS Department of Lands and Forestry, NS Department of Environment and Orthotics East Ltd.

Quotes

“This is the first time the Hiking Summit has visited the South Shore,” says Janet Barlow, Hike NS Executive Director. “It’s an area of the province that showcases a range of what Nova Scotia has to offer for hiking, from coastal hikes to woodland meaders, there’s something for everyone.”

Details

Date: Friday May 24, Saturday May 25 and Sunday, May 26, 2019
Location: Oak Island Resort & Conference Centre, 36 Treasure Drive, Western Shore
Time: 12 pm on May 24 to 5:30 pm on May 26

Fast Facts

  • Keynote speaker is Jan Sebastian LaPierre A for Adventure
  • MC Laura Barkhouse, local trail guru
  • Acadia First Nation opening ceremony
  • A kids’ program
  • Hikes featuring the beautiful scenery of the South Shore
  • Interesting sessions, skills workshops and Pecha Kucha presentations
  • Friday night reception and Saturday night supper with keynote speaker
  • Hike Nova Scotia’s Summit Awards
  • Silent auction and displays
  • Songs and stories around the campfire

The program and other details are found here

Photos

Find photos on Facebook  or Instagram or use some of the photos below.

Social Media

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Contact

For more information on this event or Hike Nova Scotia contact:

Janet Barlow, Hike Nova Scotia
(902) 932-6902
info@hikenovascotia.ca
www.hikenovascotia.ca

Photos from the 2018 Hiking Summit in Ingonish, Cape Breton

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NS Hiking Summit May 24-26, Western Shore

Hike Nova Scotia invites individuals and groups with an interest in hiking, walking and snowshoeing to the eighth annual Nova Scotia Hiking Summit from Friday, May 24 to Sunday, May 26, 2019 in Western Shore at Oak Island Resort & Conference Centre. The summit is a celebration of hiking culture and includes workshops, hiking stories, networking opportunities, hikes and a kids’ program. It is hosted by Hike NS, Events Lunenburg County and Oak Island Resort & Conference Centre. Platinum sponsor is O’Regan’s South Shore Subaru. Gold sponsors are the Municipality of Chester and the District of Lunenburg. Silver sponsor is the NS Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage. Bronze sponsors are Scotiabank, Parks Canada, Atlantick, Saltbox Brewing Company, NS Department of Lands and Forestry and NS Department of Environment. Local trail guru Laura Barkhouse is the MC and the keynote speaker is Jan Sebastian LaPierre from A for Adventure.

There is limited space, so please register early to secure your spot (last year it sold out in one month). Registration is $125 (plus 15% discount for paid Hike NS members) and $100 for children, youth and students. Registration includes some meals, evening events, morning workshop sessions and afternoon guided hikes. Registration does not include accommodation – you must arrange this on your own. If it does not sell-out, registration will close at the end of the day on May 19th. Learn more and register here.

Hiking Summit Features Cape Breton Trails

Hiking Summit in Ingonish a celebration of hiking culture in NS

About 250 people with an interest in hiking, walking and snowshoeing, will converge on Ingonish from May 11 to 13, 2018 for the seventh annual Nova Scotia Hiking Summit. Hosted by Hike NS along with Naturally Active Victoria County, Parks Canada and the Keltic Lodge at the Highlands, the Summit is a celebration of Nova Scotia’s hiking culture, and includes sharing best practices, stories and networking. Attendees include avid hikers, hiking clubs, trail groups, provincial government, municipalities and others.

Presenting sponsor is The Trail Shop and Platinum sponsor is Victoria County. Gold sponsors are Parks Canada and Destination Cape Breton. Silver sponsors are Cape Breton University – Sport and Physical Activity Leadership; the NS Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage; Clif Bar, and Big Spruce Brewing. Bronze sponsor is the Ingonish Development Society.

Quotes:Franey - 1

“Cape Breton is seen as a hiking Mecca and we’re incredibly excited to have so many people come out to talk about hiking and trails and then actually get out onto those beautiful trails,” says Janet Barlow, Hike NS Executive Director. “We were pleasantly surprised to have the Summit sell out in just one month and we’ve got a long waiting list.” The Summit is also a great to launch Destination Cape Breton’s new #HikeCapeBreton initiative.

Event details:Franey - 2

Date: Friday May 11, Saturday May 12 & Sunday, May 13, 2018
Location: Keltic Lodge at the Highlands, Ingonish
Time: 12 pm on May 11 to 5:30 pm on May 13

Fast Facts:

The Summit includes:

  • Keynote David Miller, author of AWOL on the Appalachian Trail and The A.T. Guide
  • MCs Chris Surette and Jan-Sebastian LaPierre from A for Adventure
  • A smudging and drumming ceremony to open the Summit
  • A new kids’ program
  • Hikes featuring the gorgeous scenery of the Cape Breton Highlands
  • Interesting sessions, skills workshops and Pecha Kucha presentations
  • Friday night reception and Saturday night supper with keynote speaker
  • Hike Nova Scotia’s Summit Awards
  • Silent auction and displays
  • Songs and stories around the campfire

The program and other details are found at www.hikenovascotia.ca/projects-hiking-summit.

Interviews:

Keynote David Miller is available for phone interviews leading up to the Summit as are representatives from our various co-hosts and partners. See the contact information below to arrange interviews.

Photos: 

Find photos on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/HikeNovaScotia/ or Instagram https://www.instagram.com/hikenovascotia or use some of the photos on this page.

Social Media:

Share on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/HikeNovaScotia/
Share on Twitter https://twitter.com/HikeNS
Share on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/hikenovascotia

Contact

Janet Barlow, Hike Nova Scotia
(902) 717-4408
Email info@hikenovascotia.ca

 

NS Hiking Summit

Hike Nova Scotia invites individuals and groups with an interest in hiking, walking and snowshoeing to the seventh annual Nova Scotia Hiking Summit from Friday, May 11 to Sunday, May 13 in Ingonish at the Keltic Lodge. The summit is a celebration of hiking culture and includes best practices, stories, networking opportunities, hikes and a new family / kids’ program. It is hosted by Hike NS, Naturally Active Victoria County, Parks Canada and the Keltic Lodge at the Highlands. Presenting sponsor is The Trail Shop, Platinum sponsor is Victoria County, Gold sponsors are Parks Canada and Destination Cape Breton, Silver sponsors are the NS Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage and Big Spruce Brewing and Bronze sponsor is the Ingonish Development Society. The guys from A for Adventure will be our MCs and the keynote speaker is David Miller, author of AWOL on the Appalachian Trail and The A.T. Guide.

There is limited space, so please register early to secure your spot. Registration is $45 for paid Hike NS members, $55 for non-members and $35 for children, youth and students. With the new family / kids’ program this year, families are invited to attend (some childcare provided). Registration includes: access to information sessions, hike events and socials along with Saturday and Sunday lunches. There are optional breakfasts and a Saturday supper at additional cost. Registration does not include accommodation or other meals – you must arrange them on your own. The deadline to register is May 6. Learn more and register online here.

Hike NS Presents Awards at Tatamagouche Summit

Hike Nova Scotia has awarded a Pictou County trail builder and a Colchester County trail group with its highest awards. At its annual Hiking Summit held in Tatamagouche on the weekend, Hike NS presented Dr. Gordon Young and the Cobequid Eco-Trails Society with Summit Awards.

“The Summit Award is presented to an organization or individual who has demonstrated outstanding leadership and commitment to the growth and development of hiking in Nova Scotia,” explains Deb Ryan, Hike NS’s Past President. Continue reading “Hike NS Presents Awards at Tatamagouche Summit”

Hike NS Gets a New Look

Hike NS now has a new look, including a new logo, website and general look and feel.

We’ve got Bits Creative to thank for our new look. Bits.co chose Hike NS as the winner of its Brand Spring Clean Contest in 2016. Check out the Bits.co blog where Bits.co staff explain how they came up with our new look. We’re also thankful to Rivendell Software for revamping our website.

Our new look comes just in time for our ten-year anniversary celebrations in 2017. Hike NS has come a long way, thanks to our dedicated volunteer board members over the years, to our many partners and to our many members.

We’ll celebrate further at our Hiking Summit, taking place in Tatamagouche from April 28th to 30th. Registration closes on April 24th, so if you haven’t registered  yet, please do so here; you wouldn’t want to miss out on the birthday cake or the sessions, hikes, networking and hiking stories!

Celebrating Trails and Hike NS at Hiking Summit

Hiking Summit in Tatamagouche a celebration of hiking culture in NS

Hike Nova Scotia, along with about 200 people with an interest in hiking, walking and snowshoeing, will converge on Tatamagouche from April 28 to 30, 2017 for the sixth annual Nova Scotia Hiking Summit. The Summit is a celebration of Nova Scotia’s hiking culture, and includes sharing best practices, stories and networking. Attendees include avid hikers, hiking clubs, trail groups, provincial government, municipalities and others. Hike Nova Scotia thanks the Cobequid Eco-Trails Society and the Municipality of Colchester for hosting and the NS Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage for its support.

Quotes

“We’re particularly excited about this year’s Summit because it’s a celebration of Hike Nova Scotia’s tenth anniversary and we’re launching our new look,” says Janet Barlow, Hike NS’s Executive Director. “Tatamagouche and Colchester County have some beautiful trails and keen trail groups. We’re eager to showcase that as well.”

Event Details

Date: Friday April 28, Saturday April 29 and Sunday, April 30 2017 (registration deadline April 24)

Location:

  • Friday night: Tatamagouche Creamery Square, 39 Creamery Rd.
  • Saturday: North Colchester High School, 90 Blair Ave. (with lunch at the Legion)
  • Saturday night: Royal Canadian Legion Branch 64, 80 Queen St.

Time: 1:30 pm on April 28 to 4:30 pm on April 28

Cost: $30 for paid Hike NS members and $40 for non-members

Fast Facts

  • Nine guided hikes
  • Keynote speaker Dianne Whelan, award-winning Canadian filmmaker, photographer, author and multimedia artist who is traveling the longest trail in the world, The Great Trail (The Trans Canada Trail)
  • Sessions including: Mi’kma’ki, the Land of the Mi’kmaw and the Verb Based Language of the Traditional Place Names; How to Prepare for a Backpacking Trip; We Built It….. And People Keep Coming; Geocaching: not just finding Tupperware in the Woods; How building trails builds a strong rural economy: Sugar Moon’s story; How to Avoid Getting Lost; Cobequid Eco-Trails Society Then and Now
  • Stories from the Trail Pecha Kucha presentations
  • Hike Nova Scotia’s Awards
  • Silent auction
  • Displays
  • Friday and Saturday night socials

View the agenda, directions and other details. 

Photos:

Find photos on Facebook  or Instagram or use some of the photos on this page.

Social Media:

Share on Facebook  
Share on Twitter
Share on Instagram 

Contact

Janet Barlow, Hike Nova Scotia
(902) 717-4408
Email

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Hike NS Presents Summit Award at Digby Event

Hike Nova Scotia has awarded a Digby area trail builder and a hiking group with its highest award. At its annual Hiking Summit, this year held in Digby from April 29 to May 1, Hike NS presented Larry Goodwin and the Fundy Erratics with Summit Awards.

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Larry Goodwin (left) and Greg Turner (right), representing the Fundy Erratics, on the trail.

“The Summit Award is presented to an organization or individual who has demonstrated outstanding leadership and commitment to the growth and development of hiking in Nova Scotia,” explains Deb Ryan, Hike NS’s Past President.

Since 1998, Larry Goodwin has logged countless hours nurturing the development of trails in the Digby County area. As a member of the Digby East Fish and Game Association, Larry led this group to develop a trail system in the Acacia Valley region. The trail was featured during one of several hikes during the Hiking Summit.

Over the past four years the Fundy Erratics hiking group has been a dynamic force in the promotion and development of hiking in the Digby County region. What began as a small group has grown to a large network of people who regularly get together to explore trails. The Fundy Erratics organized and led the hikes featured during the Hiking Summit.

“The Digby area has really put itself on the map as a hiking destination,” says Hike NS President Garnet McLaughlin. “That was made crystal clear by the calibre of hikes they offered and in the leadership shown in making this Summit happen. We couldn’t be happier.”

Held in a different community each year, this year’s Summit in Digby was the biggest yet, with over 175 people attending. Avid hikers, hiking clubs, trail groups, provincial government, municipalities and others attended the event. They took in guided hikes, information sessions and social events.

The Summit was a celebration of Nova Scotia’s hiking culture, and included sharing best practices and stories, networking and hiking. It was co-hosted by Hike NS, the Digby Area Recreation Commission and the Fundy Erratics. Hike Nova Scotia thanks the Nova Scotia Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage for its support.

See media coverage on the Summit here:

Hike Nova Scotia to hold Hiking summit in Digby

Hike Nova Scotia honours Digby landowner for trail development

Walking and Talking Trails at NS Hiking Summit

Hiking Summit in Digby a celebration of hiking culture in NS

Hike Nova Scotia, along with about 175 people with an interest in hiking, walking and snowshoeing, will converge on Digby from April 29 to May 1 for the fifth annual Nova Scotia Hiking Summit. The Summit is a celebration of Nova Scotia’s hiking culture, and will include sharing best practices, stories and networking. Attendees include avid hikers, hiking clubs, trail groups, provincial government, municipalities and others. Hike Nova Scotia thanks the Digby Area Recreation Commission and the Fundy Erratics hiking group for hosting and the Province of Nova Scotia for its support.12039311_10154296081646002_9215799114871840658_n

Quotes:

“Every year this Summit grows in popularity,” says Janet Barlow with Hike Nova Scotia. “We’re excited for the Digby area to show off its trails to our biggest audience yet and to have really rich discussions and sessions.”

Event Details:

Date: Friday, April 29, Saturday April 30 and Sunday, May 1, 2016 (registration deadline April 25)

Location:10402411_667622099999384_4254976606898289314_n

  • Friday and Saturday nights: Digby Curling Centre (27 Shreve St.)
  • Saturday: Digby Regional High School (53 Mount St.)

Time: 3 pm on April 29 to 3 pm on May 1 Continue reading “Walking and Talking Trails at NS Hiking Summit”