Fernie Valley Pathway

Originally conceived in 1998 when the Fernie Recreational Trail Steering Committee was formed, the vision for a paved trail connecting Fernie with the ski hill was incorporated into the City OCP. In 2004 part of this vision was realized with the construction of the Fernie Centennial Trail – a gravel surfaced trail from West Fernie to Riverside Way.

The Fernie Trails Alliance (FTA) committee, under the dedicated direction of Jason Sinclair and his crew, worked diligently on fundraising (Columbia Basin Trust, Ministry of Highways, Federal Infrastructure, RDEK, and many other donors), organization, and general guidance that allowed for the creation of a safety analysis and route selection study that ultimately led to the handing off of a shovel-ready project for the City of Fernie to implement.

With the recently completed City of Fernie sections of the Fernie Valley Pathway (FVP) completed in 2023 (Fairy Creek section, Emily Brydon Trail section, West Fernie section, and Centennial section) paved and ready for active multimodal commuting, an important part of Fernie’s ever-improving trail network is now in place for all to enjoy. Extending from the Visitor Centre to Mount Fernie Park Road, only one more section remains to be constructed.

The 3m wide trail component that was incorporated into the Ministry of Highway’s recently constructed Lizard Creek Bridge provides an important piece of infrastructure that the planned trail construction will seamlessly tie into.

Here we are in 2024, and the FTA - FVP Committee is moving towards having the final section constructed beginning in the spring of 2025. Working with FTA, RCR, MOTI, and the RDEK the final route selection is in place, surveying and final engineering are expected to begin this spring, and an active fundraising campaign will be kicking off this summer.

Local businesses, developers, and service clubs will see material on the project alongside a request for support arriving in their inboxes this summer. With everyone’s continuing contributions, this important community linkage will soon be realized.

The Fernie Valley Pathway Committee would like to thank everyone who has been involved to date and look forward to any additional support to help this long-awaited dream become a reality. 

If you would like to learn more or are interested in supporting this project, contact Terry Nelson at tfernienelson@icloud.com.

Photo by Terry Nelson