BNTA-Biosphere Northeast Trails Association


For further information, please contact: Athol Grant:

In early 2014 a group of hiking enthusiasts formed the Biosphere Northeast Trails Association (BNTA). Accepted as a society and as a member of the Nova Scotia Trails Association, this group has been reviewing existing trails and proposing new and extensive trails which eventually would run throughout the County.

Biosphere Northeast Trails Association (BNTA) AGM

Annual Meeting of the Biosphere Northeast Trails Association

Tuesday, March 27th at St. Michael’s Hall, Baddeck at 7:00  pm. Members and the public are encouraged to attend

Annual Meeting of the Biosphere Northeast Trails Association (BNTA) And Humes River Wilderness Trail Construction and Management Planning Session HELD 

March 12, 2016, Municipal Court House – Baddeck

*Trail Construction and Management Planning Session 

*Annual Meeting                                                                           

* Note: Both the Trail planning session and the annual meeting were open to members and non – members.

Humes River Wilderness Trail Construction & Management Planning Session

 The objective of the session was to review the draft document (Humes River Trail Project Management Planning Document) prepared by Stephen Kerr, director BNTA. Attached find draft copy of this document.  As a result of this review – propose a motion or motions at the annual meeting to implement all or portions of this document. The annual meeting was held immediately following this review session

Annual Meeting Agenda Items Included:

  1. a) Minutes of previous annual general meeting.
  2. b) Consideration of the annual report of the directors.
  3. c) Consideration of the annual financial report of BNTA.
  4. d) New Business:

Two changes were proposed to the By- Laws of the Association; namely

Section 6 (e) be changed as follows;

Now reads – Membership in the Society shall consist of:   Those who reside in the general             geographic area of Northern Cape Breton – Inverness and Victoria Counties, Nova Scotia.

To be changed to – Membership in the Society shall consist of:   Those who reside in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia.

Section 22 be changed as follows;

Now reads   — The number of directors shall be 5

To be changed to – The number of directors shall be no less than 5 and no more than 10.

  1. e) Election of Directors.

Meeting of the Biosphere Northeast Trails Association (BNTA)

Held July 21, 2015 – Municipal Courthouse, Baddeck

Hikers, walkers, snowshoer’s, snowmobilers, atv’ers, trail developers and/or maintainers – anyone interested in our great natural environment benefiting residents and visitors attended.

AGM Resolution: April 1, 2015:

” The directors of the Biosphere Northeast Trails Association proceed with the planning, construction and management of the proposed Humes River Wilderness Hiking Trail between Exit # 6 at Aberdeen to the Wagmatcook First Nations community.”

Humes River Wilderness Area


The first major project to be proposed by BNTA is a 18 km hiking trail through the Humes River Wilderness area. It’s believed it will form the first leg of the Bras d’Or Lake Biosphere Reserve hiking trail network and will be the gateway to an extensive network of trails within Victoria County.

Humes River Falls Trail



First Draft of the Proposed Humes River Trail System (Nov 2015)


The week in the Humes River Wilderness Area was an amazing experience”. This is the first project that cruise traffic is a design factor to consider. Cheers, Garnet (Cobequid Trails Consultant)

HumesRiverFallsPic5Dec62014HumesRiverFalls2011fall 018


Brief description of Project:

BNTA envisions the trail starting at Aberdeen, just off the Trans Canada Highway, Exit # 6 (turn off to Little Narrows) – The trail would follow MacPhersons Brook to the Humes River Protected Area and exit the protected area at the First Nations Community of Wagmatcook. The 9000 acre Humes River Protected Area encompasses one of the last relatively large tracts of intact Acadian forests in the Bras d’Or Lake watershed. With MacPhedran Lake, numerous rivers and brooks, high barrens, and beautiful falls at Humes River and MacNaughton Brook, this is an impressive location to showcase the wilderness areas of Cape Breton.

Why the project is important:

Victoria County has large tracts of wilderness land that has been declared worthy of protected status by both Federal and Provincial Governments.

The Government of Canada established the Cape Breton Highlands National Park within the Counties of Victoria and Inverness. This park has played a major part in the development of the Island of Cape Breton & the Province of Nova Scotia.

The Province of Nova Scotia has also set aside 27 % of the land mass of Victoria County for protection under the Wilderness Protection Act.

With reductions in Government funding for the management and promotion of these lands, it will be the local community that must provide the leadership to ensure this asset becomes a part of the economy and lifestyle of the County.


A more detailed outline of the project should include discussion on the following :

Description of area including;

1) Native Community history,

2) Settlement and property grants within area,

3) Old mapping available,

4) Geology and topography of area

5) History of use in area,

Description of reasons for trail:

1)  Lack of managed trails in southern Victoria County and around Bras d’Or Lakes. In Victoria County (outside CBHNP) the only managed and promoted trail is Uisge Ban Falls. Interest in trail around the Bras d’Or Lake Biosphere Reserve.

2)  Economic benefits – What might be the benefit to local economy – compare with other areas and what a managed trail could mean to the economy. Look at other countries. Benefits to local campgrounds, motels , restaurants, etc.

3)  Health benefits – having our residents more active. Benefits to Wagmatcook First Nation.

4)  Biosphere Reserve and their interest in-  “around the lake trail”.

5)  Opportunity for community to participate in revival of economy

6)  Opportunity to attract people to retire to area – lifestyle issue.

The trail itself:

1) Description of each section and possible amenities

  1. a) Lewis Mtn Road section – brook, old grist mill, rest area (benches)
  2. b) Lewis Mtn Road to MacPhedran Lake (Where did name come from ?)

– Rest area at lake, fishing in lake, trail north or south of lake ? Nature

loop in area ?

  1. c) Macphedran Lake to Humes River falls – down the canyon, fishing,

possible camping site and what it might look like, connection to Trans

Canada Trail, loop, out to Trans Canada for shorter hike. Any history on Salmon fishing.

  1. d) Humes River Falls to Wagmatcook – possible section upgrade to heavy

use (graveled path). Loop to MacNaughton Brook falls.

  1. e) Parking areas at either end – talk to Athol about this – has ideas
  2. f) Washrooms – will we have them ?
  3. g) Other thoughts.

Our Partners:

1) lead organization – Biosphere Northeast Trails Assc. (a little background).

2) Bras d’Or Lake Biosphere Reserve Trails Group – background, community meetings held. Long term vision.

3) Wagmatcook First Nations – their interest, background, history

4) County of Victoria – long term interest in trails and having them part of economy.


3 Responses to BNTA-Biosphere Northeast Trails Association

  1. Pingback: Annual Meeting of the Biosphere Northeast Trails Association (BNTA) – Apr. 1st | Naturally Active Victoria County

  2. Pingback: Annual Meeting of the Biosphere Northeast Trails Association (BNTA) – April 1st | Our Baddeck

  3. Pingback: Trail Construction Failure – singletrackmap

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