Featured Trail: Taylor Head Provincial Park

Trail Name: Taylor Head Provincial Park

Location: Spry Bay, HRM

Description: “Taylor Head Provincial Park, a natural environment park, occupies a rugged wind-swept peninsula jutting six and a half kilometres (4 miles) into the Atlantic Ocean on Nova Scotia’s picturesque Eastern Shore. The park provides spectacular views and offers 16 kilometres (10 miles) of unspoiled coastline. Discover the majesty of enduring rock versus the tumultuous power of the sea, all just over an hour’s drive from Halifax.”

Map: Find a map and directions here and here.

Provincial Parks Survey

The Province of Nova Scotia continues its consultation with Nova Scotians on the Provincial Park system. In addition to public consultation sessions during the month of June, there is a survey available. Please complete the survey and give your feedback on our parks system so that it continues to play a vital role in providing excellent hiking and other outdoor opportunities. Look up Provincial Parks online for a description of each provincial park in Nova Scotia. Park maps and information is found here.

Hike Nova Scotia asked, through Twitter and Facebook, what folks’ favourite Provincial Park for hiking is and these were some of the answers given: Cape Chignecto, Blomidon, Long Lake, Taylor Head, Thomas Raddall, Melmerby Beach and Powell’s Point. What’s yours?

Provincial Parks Consultations May 31-June 26

Parks Consultations Meet Strategy Goal

Department of Natural Resources

May 28, 2012 12:23 PM

Government is acting on another goal of the natural resources strategy by launching provincewide consultations with Nova Scotians about provincial parks.

“We are very proud of our Nova Scotia parks and we want them sustainable for the future,” said John MacDonell, acting Minister of Natural Resources. “This consultation will help us develop our parks to meet the goal set out in the natural resources strategy.”

A series of community meetings will be held in locations around the province beginning Thursday, May 31. People can also comment through online and telephone surveys.

A simple survey on the Department of Natural Resources website and a telephone survey of Nova Scotians will also provide opportunities for people to express what they value most about provincial parks and how they should be managed in the future.

“We encourage Nova Scotians who use our parks to be part of this system-wide discussion. Their input is welcome and needed,” said Mr. MacDonell.

The province’s natural resources strategy, The Path We Share, released in August 2011, calls for a review to develop a more sustainable parks system. Information and opinions gathered from Nova Scotians during the consultations will be considered by government to develop an improved, sustainable system of parks.

“Provincial Parks are important to Nova Scotians,” says Chris Miller, national conservation biologist for the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society. “Parks are places where people can go to enjoy nature and learn about conservation, so it’s important for park users and all Nova Scotians to make their views heard”.

The province has nearly 300 properties in the provincial park system, including 20 camping parks and 122 day-use parks, many with coastal access. Other properties are held in reserve. The consultations will look at whether parks are meeting the mandate of parks legislation and consider opportunities for changes.

English public meetings will be held in 15 towns across the province and French consultations, via video conference, at five French-speaking areas. Details will be advertised locally and are online.

Featured Trail: Five Islands Provincial Park Trail

Trail Name: Five Islands Provincial Park Trail

Location: Five Islands, Colchester County

Description: According to the Municipality of Colchester, “Five Islands Provincial Park has 14 km of hiking trails. The trails lead to interesting natural features and spectacular views of 225-million-year-old geological formations such as the Old Wife, Red Head and the Five Islands (Moose, Diamond, Long, Egg and Pinnacle). The park has a campground, picnic area, beach, and opportunities for beachcombing, rock collecting, clam digging, and nature appreciation.”

Map: Find a map and directions here.

NS Provincial Parks at Risk?

The Natural Resources Strategy for Nova Scotia was released on August 16 and outlines the approach to natural resource management, biodiversity, forestry, geological resources and provincial parks. Though the news release on the Strategy  only stated it will “carry out a detailed visitor survey to collect information on the park system,” news reports have indicated budget cuts could affect our parks, with increased user fees and even park closures being considered. The strategy says, “The parks cannot be all things to all people. We need to decide which parks will focus on protection; which will provide recreation; and which might be separated into clearly designated sections that have distinct roles. We also need to decide such important matters as where to invest taxpayers’ funds and what land to divest.” Consultation with Nova Scotians on the park system is slated to begin over the next year.