Benches have been installed along the Okanagan Rail Trail along Kalamalka Lake near Coldstream thanks to a generous donation. (Contributed)

Benches have been installed along the Okanagan Rail Trail along Kalamalka Lake near Coldstream thanks to a generous donation. (Contributed)

Okanagan pioneer reconnected to rail through trail enhancements

Lake Country, Kelowna and North Okanagan sites get big boost

Uncle Harry would be pleased.

Harry Weatherill who, almost 100 years ago watched the Canadian National Railway construction, helped complete and enhance the Okanagan’s infamous rail trail.

It was Weatherill’s wish to provide funds for a recreational facility for members of the public and for senior citizens in the Okanagan Valley. The Okanagan pioneers nephews helped make that wish come true through a generous donation from the Edna, Stella and Harry Weatherill Foundation.

READ MORE: Okanagan family grants uncle’s last wish

The donation funded three interpretive sites on the trail:

  • Kelowna: (KM 40) Carney Pond observant deck
  • Lake Country: (KM 23) Ribbleworth Falls bridge
  • Regional District of North Okanagan: (KM 3.7) Kalamalka Lake benches

Guiding principles for the project were agreed upon by rail trail owner jurisdictions:

· Effectively use and improve the natural beauty of the trail.

· Simple and natural. Keep the feeling along the trail as ‘natural’ as possible with design and content.

· Engage/educate through design, art and stories.

· Durable, high quality, environmentally responsible design and construction.

· Engage the experts in determining what and how to interpret.

Site preparations began in spring 2019 with rough grading, installation of fencing and applications for required permits. Work on the interpretive sites finished in October 2020 with the installation of site furnishings.

“Cyclists, hikers, parents and caregivers with strollers, and dog walkers have already been enjoying the opportunity to take a break, enjoy the view and learn something new presented on the interpretive signage at the sites,” the District of Lake Country said.

Weatherill, a true Okanagan pioneer, was born in Kelowna in 1911 and later grew up in Vernon.

As a child, Harry watched the CN Railway being built. He recalled that the decision of the Canadian National Railway to bring a rail line into Kelowna was one of the major events of the early 1920s and, now his name is connected to the rail line once again.

READ MORE: $220K for Okanagan Rail Trail loo


@VernonNews
jennifer@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Trails

 

A viewing deck has been installed along the Okanagan Rail Trail in Kelowna at Carney Pond thanks to a generous donation. (Contributed)

A viewing deck has been installed along the Okanagan Rail Trail in Kelowna at Carney Pond thanks to a generous donation. (Contributed)

Interpretive sites along the Okanagan Rail Trail have come to fruition thans to the Edna Stella and Harry Weatherill Foundation. (Mel Farrell photo)

Interpretive sites along the Okanagan Rail Trail have come to fruition thans to the Edna Stella and Harry Weatherill Foundation. (Mel Farrell photo)

A bridge has been installed along the Okanagan Rail Trail at Ribbleworth Falls in Lake Country thanks to a generous donation. (Contributed)

A bridge has been installed along the Okanagan Rail Trail at Ribbleworth Falls in Lake Country thanks to a generous donation. (Contributed)

Just Posted

Michelle Jacobs receives her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Coast Capri Hotel on April 28, 2021. The pop-up clinic was hosted by the First Nations Health Authority. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
126 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

There are 22 individuals hospitalized due to the virus, and 13 in intensive care

Vernon local Ryan Lazar – who specializes in 2D background design and 3D animation – is ready to start his career after a tough yet rewarding two years of studies. (Contributed)
Okanagan College students get animated at graduation

‘The pandemic has resulted in more video consumption and the animation industry is so hot right now because of it’

There were questions raised as to whether or not this structure actually cost less than $100,000. Scott Robertson, owner of Absolute Contracting and partial owner for Arrowtec, said the building is meant to be
temporary as two or three years down the road, his company’s intent is develop houses on the property in line with the land use designated to the property in the Official Community Plan, which is T4–walk up residential. (Jocelyn Doll - Revelstoke Review)
‘This is failure’: Construction noise frustrates neighbours on Victoria Rd. E

The city and business are trying to reduce noise, but residents want the project gone

Eric Schwenck was awarded the Train-to-Train Coach Goldie award by BC Alpine this year. He coached the Revelstoke Ski Club U14s last winter. (Katie Findlay photo)
Revelstoke Ski Club coach and volunteer recognized in the Goldie Awards

BC Alpine recognizes ski clubs, skiers and volunteers with awards every year

Moving the old jail from Third Street West to Carlson Street in May 1971. (Estelle Dickey photo; Revelstoke Museum and Archives photo 9171)
Glimpses of Revelstoke’s past for May 13

Local history as recorded by the newspaper of the day

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10-million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

Barriere RCMP nabbed two suspects who were allegedly breaking into cabins in McLure. (File photo)
Thieves nabbed by Barriere Mounties during McLure break-ins

Police Service Dog Kody instrumental in making the arrest

(File photo)
Repeated cougar sighting on Okanagan Rail Trail

Plenty of bear sightings around the valley too

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry update the province’s COVID-19 vaccine program, May 10, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays below 500 a day over weekend

14 more deaths, down to 350 in hospital as of Monday

Royal Bay Secondary School’s rainbow crosswalk was vandalized shortly after being painted but by Monday, coincidentally the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, the crosswalk had been cleaned up and students had surrounded it with chalk messages of support and celebration. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
B.C. high’s school’s pride crosswalk restored following ‘hateful’ graffiti attack

Hate terms, racial slur, phallic images spray-painted at Greater Victoria high school

RCMP vest
Penticton beach brawl results in one arrest but no charges

People took to social media after a fight broke out at the fire pits at Okanagan Lake Saturday

Terrance Mack would have celebrated his 34th birthday on May 13, 2021. Mack’s family has identified him as the victim of a homicide in an apartment on Third Avenue in Port Alberni sometime in April. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Family identifies Ucluelet man as victim of Vancouver Island homicide

Terrance Mack being remembered as ‘kind, gentle’ man

A single motorcycle parked outside of the Kelowna Hells Angels clubhouse at 837 Ellis Street on July 9, 2020. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Kelowna Hells Angels prospect sentenced to 9 months in jail for aggravated assault

Colin Michael Bayley pleaded guilty to the downtown Kelowna assault earlier this month

Most Read