Construction of a 455-metre long access route at Nymph Falls Park along the existing Mid-Line Trail is completed. The trail opened on April 5. The viewing area at the falls (pictured below) and about 100 m of new trail was already open to park users as of March 29. The parking lot should be clear of all construction materials and equipment by April 9 and be fully open once again. Planting and signage will follow in the coming weeks although most of the planting will occur in the fall to ensure better surivial of the new plants.
The new access route provides a compacted gravel trail with grades of 6.8% or less from the parking lot to the falls, allowing closer access for emergency and service vehicles. The changes allow those with mobility challenges an opportunity to enjoy the natural wonders of the Valley and improve toilet facilities near where park visitors tend to congregrate in the summer. The trail is 3.5 metres (11.5 ft) in width which is similar to the main trail into the park from the parking lot. The new trail between the falls and toilet is 2.2 metres (7.2 ft) wide.
After several park users voiced concern about the proposed 3 x 3 metre covered viewing platform at the falls, as well as the proposal to convert the existing falls toilet to a change room, the regional district revised plans for both. The existing toilet was removed rather than being converted to a change room. The viewing platform was redesigned to a rock and gravel lookout point.
The new trail follows existing paths for the most part to minimize the number of larger trees to be removed. Crews cut 20 trees that were 30 cm / 12" or more in diameter and an equal number of trees less than 30 cm as part of the trail widening at the end of January. The contractor did remove the additional trees due to Worksafe requirements. The trees in the park are under the authority of the Ministry of Forests. Ministry staff decided on February 7 to sell the cut trees to a local firewood company. The cut trees are being removed from the park as a result. Removing them does reduce the risk of fire starting along the trail. Areas disturbed by the work will be replanted with 600 native plants.
We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Rick Hansen Foundation and the Province of British Columbia through the Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation. The CVRD received a grant of $20,000 from the Rick Hansen Foundation for this project.