Snowmobiling into Special Management Areas
On March 22 IATNL Chairperson Paul Wylezol and Signage Director Delano Pittman made a one-day snowmobile trip into the Long Range Mountains of the Northern Peninsula to scout out the recently created CBPPL-IATNL Special Management Areas at Brian's Pond Inner Pond and Western Blue Inner Pond, before returning to Zinc Mine Road just north of Daniel's Harbour.
The two Areas, along with three others at Little Codroy, Serpentine and Chimney Cove Valleys, are Corner Brook Pulp and Paper Limited woodlands that have recently been protected from harvesting for their environmental, recreational and tourism values. Over the coming years the IATNL will develop low-impact trails within these Areas to enable environmentally friendly access into these adventure tourism resources.
The trip was made on a beautiful sunny winter day with great visiblility and ideal snow conditions. Strangely enough, while there is little snow and ice on the coast and in Western Newfoundland communities, there is abundant snow and ice in the backcountry valleys and on the 2,000ft-high mountaintops.
The mountainous region between Brian's Pond Inner Pond and Western Blue Inner Pond is a rugged and remote wilderness area with few signs of human activity. The area is entered via CBPPL's lowland logging roads and a snowmobile trail winding up through Baker's Gulch in the south, and around the north side of Blue Mountain in the north.
Apart from one "Shiver Shack" and a half dozen widely dispersed outfitters' cabins, there is no human presence in the mountains and high valleys. In summer the only access is by foot or float plane.
If all goes well, the IATNL will begin development of the Brian's Pond Inner Pond to Western Blue Inner Pond section of trail in 2011. As you can see, the area is another one of Western Newfoundland's special wild places that will add to the growing list of IATNL Marquee Trails.
And though Paul and Delano were too noisy to see any wildlife on their day in the mountains, they did see plenty of sign. One thing you can tell your kids for sure ... the Easter Bunny is alive and well!!!