Students mark Cape to Cape trail

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NNEC students raise trail information kiosks in Durham, Scotsburn

Austin Carde drives his shovel into the rocky mud and throws it on a growing pile of dirt. The wooden pylons of a trail information sign become more secure as they become buried in earth.


Student Keith McInnis watches as Teacher Andrew Parsons puts the finishing touches to the roof of the information kiosk on the Cape to Cape Trail in Scotsburn.

“I’ve always wanted to be a carpenter,” he said. “I figure this is the best way to start.”

Carde, along with half a dozen other students from NNEC, were hard at work yesterday placing wooden signs along key points in the Durham and Scotsburn on the Cape to Cape Trail.

The work on the trail information signs began on May 6, with students from around the CCRSB gathering together at NNEC to participate in a community build day. At that time, they learned historic timber framing construction methods and built beautiful new kiosks for the volunteer group that maintains the Cape to Cape Trail in the county.

The plan came together after a chance meeting between Cape to Cape committee member Fran Wyman and Building Systems Teacher Andrew Parsons. The two began discussing signage needs for the trail, and Parsons proposed the idea of building the structures as a part of student learning in the Career Exploration Program

“It’s always an easy sell to find project that get the students working out of the classroom and into the wilderness,” said Parsons. “Plus it’s got so much relevancy giving back to the community and providing a lasting legacy.”

Yesterday, the students along with Trail Coordinator Sally O’Neill and Parsons, put up the signs which will feature maps of the trails.

“This was my first time doing a project like this,” said Carde. “I hope that people will see it, like it and be able to use it to help them.”

The students are part of the Career Exploration Program, which is designed to focus learning on one subject or trade while getting employability skills and meaningful co-op work experience.

“This project has been a huge benefit to the Cape to Cape committee,” said O’Neill. “The rustic timber frames will fit beautifully within the forest setting and improve the hiker experience by making the trails easier to find and navigate.”

The kiosks will hold signs with maps, interpretive and safety information.

“The young builders’ work is so impressive,” says Wyman, “We hope they are as proud of the kiosks as we are, and we hope they’ll come back to explore the trails.”

Partners in this project include the Chignecto-Central Regional School Board, the Cape to Cape Trail Committee, Active Pictou County and The Pictou County Community Health Board.

The Cape to Cape committee has a full roster of organized hikes throughout the season. Interested parties can contact and be referred to the C2C’s email list or check out their Facebook at Trails of Pictou County.

On Twitter: @NGNewsJohn 

Organizations: Building Systems, C2C

Geographic location: Durham, Scotsburn, Pictou County Chignecto

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