The Gillies Cr. Watershed - New Trails?

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The Gillies Cr. Watershed - New Trails?

Post  Admin on Mon Jun 20, 2011 6:54 pm

Enjoyed a series of short hikes into various sections of the Gillies Cr. watershed with BC Parks ranger Sara Bunge today. We were investigating both past and present trail use patterns in the area, while determining what existing trails might be 'grandfathered' into signed / authorized trail corridors and which may be closed off to traffic.

Those who frequent this discussion forum are likely aware that the mid to lower sections of the Gillies Cr. watershed consist of environmental conservation lands mainly owned and operated by a trio of groups including BC Parks, The Land Conservancy and The Nature Conservancy.

One of the bike club's recent successes (2009) was to forge a working relationship with these groups, allowing us to sign and maintain several trails in the watershed. This has been a landmark success story for bike club >< environmental group relations in BC, and we hope to slightly increase our sanctioned trail network by gaining permission to sign / maintain the 'Kraut Trail'. This route runs down the opposite side of the Gillies Cr. FSR compared to WARD1. While WARD1 is parallel and south of the FSR, Kraut is parallel and north of said FSR.

Today we identified two areas the will be closed due to ill-conceived trail design; the trail above Kraut know as KD, and a short-cut between lower WARD1 and the Gillies FSR, as this short-cut runs through several creek-beds.

I ask that all of you reading this missive work with us in respecting these minor closures. Your cooperation will go a long way toward solidifying relations between mountain bikers and the various environmental groups who own / manager these lands as well as other protected areas in the South Okanagan (of which there are many).

Sara will be marking the closures with BC Parks signage over the next few weeks.

Andrew D.

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Re: The Gillies Cr. Watershed - New Trails?

Post  dex on Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:28 pm

Andrew.
Is the single track climb from the upper parking lot to the Gilles FSR road cosed?
I was up there yesterday and someone has blocked off that short steep sidehill climb part way up the trail. There is a longish detour around it.
If so too bad, I kind of liked that climb.
TD

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Re: The Gillies Cr. Watershed - New Trails?

Post  dex on Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:31 pm

Also, are there any good maps of the Gilles Cr area out?
I rode up to Derenzy Lk. yesterday, in the down pour,
not reccommened,
more work than fun.

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Dex

Post  Admin on Tue Jul 26, 2011 5:06 pm

Hi man,

Ya, that short, steep climb has officially been closed; as per request of BC Parks. They don't want any trails in the Gillies Cr. protected area that promote soil erosion, and that one pitch in particular was far too steep for the surface material. Those closures were done by me the other day; we have no choice in this matter as the watershed is an officially protected area - with the Land Conservancy, the Nature Conservancy and BC Parks calling the shots in there.

I have maps of a whack of trails in the Gillies Cr. watershed, but we are allowed to publish only WARD1 and Rock Oven "on the record", and they are officially turning a blind eye to the 'Kraut' and 'The Fox' trails.

The area also hosts a number of other trails, many of them east of the SUBLOT18 (Parks & Conservation area) boundary; Jamie's Extension, Derenzy Lake, Ellis FSR connector, KD, etc.

Check out www.sweetsingletrack.ca for more information. If you have a GPS device or smartphone I can provide you with some GPS tracks as well.

BTW: I can only begin to imagine the pain involved in ascending as far as Derenzy Lake, you my friend might just be a little bit crazy :-) We do the Derenzy area by shuttling and dropping from the 201!

Andrew D.



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