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Inaugural ride aims to promote the Okanagan Rail Trail to visitors


More than 100 people rode the Okanagan Rail Trail between Coldstream and Lake Country on Sunday as part of the inaugural Okanagan Rail Ride event.

The organizer already puts on events on the Kettle Valley Rail Trail and is hoping this new endeavor will help promote the relatively new Okanagan Rail Trail pathway to a wider audience.

Watch: (June 2019) Neighbours voice concerns about safety near Okanagan Rail Trail

Event director Glenn Bond said Sunday’s ride attracted participants from Vancouver and Alberta.

READ MORE: Majority of Okanagan Rail Trail officially opens, but portion still not ready

“The locals ride (the rail trail) all the time in their backyard so this is just really trying to get people to come to the Okanagan,” said Bond.

Some money from the ride will also go to Friends of the Okanagan Rail Trail, although Bond did not specify how much will be donated.

With help from government grants, service clubs, corporate donations and thousands of individual donors, millions of dollars was raised to convert the former rail line into a pathway.

READ MORE: Okanagan Rail Trail clears ranch hurdle

The majority of the Okanagan Rail Trail, which runs from Coldstream to Kelowna, was officially opened in September 2018.

Proponents of the project argued the path would be a significant tourist draw.

Friends of the Okanagan Rail Trail is preparing to launch another fundraiser to add amenities to the northern trailhead.

– with files from Jim Douglas

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