The Great Trail

It began as a bold dream in 1992: the idea of creating a trail from coast to coast to coast that would be a gift from Canadians to Canadians. This vision, the Trans Canada Trail – The Great Trail – continues to capture the imagination and support of people across the country. Connecting us with nature, with the past and with one another, the world’s longest recreational trail winds its way across Canada’s magnificent urban, rural and wilderness landscapes. Once fully connected, it will link over 15,000 communities. As we look to 2017 and Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation, The Great Trail offers us all a view of the horizon, of everything that is ahead of us and all the possibilities that await.


Connecting The Great Trail, one kilometre at a time

 Deborah Apps on the Glenbow Trail in Alberta. Andrew Penner

Deborah Apps on the Glenbow Trail in Alberta. Andrew Penner

By Deborah Apps, President & CEO, Trans Canada Trail National Champion

The Trans Canada Trail – The Great Trail – is a timeless gift from Canadians to Canadians. Connecting the frontiers of our past and our future, by 2017, The Great Trail will cover almost 24,000 kilometres, linking Canada’s three oceans and over 15,000 communities. Uniting us physically and symbolically, the Trail is a testament to our innate desire to connect with nature, with one another and with ourselves.  

Over the years, I’ve witnessed the boundless generosity and determination of volunteers, trail organizations, donors and all levels of government in contributing to the creation of this sustainable, multi-generational legacy. I’ve experienced the willingness of our partners to find solutions and to overcome the many challenges of a project of this magnitude. I am proud of the tremendous work that has gone into achieving so much, by so many, for so many, one kilometre at a time.

The Trail is a living classroom inspiring a deepening awareness of Canada’s natural heritage, history and cultural tapestry. We’re promoting our country through tourism and ecotourism, while celebrating our cultural history and preserving Canada’s environmental diversity.

I’d like to thank the thousands of committed volunteers and donors who are making history by supporting the development of the world’s longest and grandest trail, an investment that is bearing countless dividends, and will do so for generations to come. The Trail winds its way through all of Canada’s spectacular capital cities and thousands of communities, showcasing our shared landscapes, from urban and suburban to rural and wilderness.

The Great Trail will be the natural stage for celebrating Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation, when a new chapter of our shared journey will begin. The Trail is a reflection of who we are, and of what we want to be as Canadians. I invite you to join us for this unique occasion – connection by 2017 – with pride of purpose. And, after the celebration of connection is over, Canada’s national Trail will continue to improve as we work together to steward, promote and enhance it, and as we invite the world to experience Canada and Canadians!

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