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BC Marine Trails: Preserving BC coastal access for small craft users.

About the BC Marine Trails Network

Mailing Address:

B.C. Marine Trails Network Association
3285 Roper Road
Ladysmith, BC, V9G1C4

Treasurer's address is:

B.C. Marine Trails Network Association
3285 Roper Road
Ladysmith, BC, V9G1C4


Please give us a donation to support our efforts. We can issue a charitable receipt upon request to offset some Canadian income tax!

Our Canada Revenue Agency charitable number is: 812142826RR0001. You can make donations here

 Charitable Purposes of the BC Marine Trails

The purposes of the Association are:
a) to identify, map and preserve a network of marine access points and public recreational sites along the British Columbia coastline for use by the general public;
b) to protect the environment for the benefit of the public by conducting environmental stewardship projects designed to preserve and protect flora and fauna, and restore waterways; and
c) to undertake activities ancillary and incidental to the attainment of the above-mentioned charitable purposes.

Our Vision:

The entire B.C. coastline linked through marine routes and land sites for sustainable water-based public recreation.

Our Mission:

To work with First Nations and stakeholders to build, protect and promote a public network of marine trails allowing recreational navigation of the BC coastline with minimal impact on the environment.

Our Values:

Right to Public Access:

We value the right of public access to public places.


  • We value the ecologically diverse environment of coastal British Columbia and efforts to protect it.

Caring for the Coast:

  • We value responsible stewardship practices that benefit the ecologically diverse environment of the BC coast.

First Nations:

  • We respect and value the ongoing importance of First Nations culture on the British Columbia coast, and the need for collaboration to ensure proper stewardship.

Right of Navigation:

  • We value the historic ability to freely travel by paddle along the BC coastline.

Sharing the Coast:

  • We value working in harmony with others who love and appreciate the BC coast.

About Us

The BC Marine Trails Network Association is a BC-based registered non-profit society and a registered charity under the Canada Income Tax Act. We are dedicated to both creating and preserving a network of BC coastal marine launch points and public recreation sites and to the protection of the environment through our environmental stewardship practices  As written in the ‘History of the BCMTNA’ major progress began on this initiative in 2007. The success of the BCMTNA to date rests with our hard-working volunteers and dialogue and consultation with First Nations (rights holders),  stakeholder groups and government agencies.

The BCMTNA is comprised of 11 paddling clubs from Vancouver Island, Salt Spring Island and the mainland of BC and over 570 individual members. Each club assigns designated representatives to liaise and volunteer with the BCMTNA.  Over the past several years, these volunteers have logged tens of thousands of hours performing site assessments,  inventoriies, cleanups and upgrades along the vast network of trails. 

 At the heart of the Association is our Board and committees.  Their roles and responsibilities have become complex and far-reaching. Given the length of the BC coastline — estimated to be around 27 000 km long — and the huge number of actual and potential sites, there is a significant amount of work yet to be done. Our three committees - Trails Development, Stewardship and Communications - are well organized to understand complex areas of responsibilities.

Part of our volunteer work is with Recreation Sites and Trails BC, our government 'partners' where Crown lands outside parks are concerned. We meet with their technicians and managers on a routine basis not only to exchange information, but to get advice and help on the progress of a trail. We are very fortunate to have such support. In the past year, our association has been working with BC Parks on a 'marine strategy'.

Member Clubs and Board of Directors

Member Clubs of the BCMTNA

  Board of Directors

  • President: Paul Grey (Nanaimo Paddlers, Cowichan)
  • Secretary: Kirsten Hathaway (SKABC)
  • Treasurer: Paul Grey (Nanaimo Paddlers)


  • Nick Heath (SKABC)
  • Karen Thrussell
  • Steve Best (SKABC)
  • Gene Gapsis (Nanaimo Paddlers)
  • Stephanie Meinke (Nanaimo Paddlers)
  • Martin Ryer (SKABC)
  • Louise Thompson (Nanaimo Paddlers)
  • Jerry Kaye

Mailing Address
BC Marine Trails Network Association
3285 Roper Road
Ladysmith, BC, Canada V9G1C4

Benefits of the BC Marine Trails Network

 Paddlers, small boat users

The BC Marine Trails Network secures water access for for public recreation for present and future generations. Small boat users need frequent land access at safe locations. The BC Marine Trails Network helps represent small boat recreational interests during land use planning in and around coastal communities.


The BC Marine Trails Network provides a focal point for local tourism initiatives. Tourism is a vital economic compnenent in coastal communities.

Coastal Communities

The BC Marine Trails Network links coastal communities together by water.  Paddlers patronize  many of the amenities offered in these communities, such as hotels,  B&Bs, restaurants, all kinds of supplies, water taxis, and guiding.

Stewardship and Education

BC Marine Trails Network Association members are active stewards of our marine coastal environment and are committed to educating all users about the important natural and cultural values of our coast.  BCMTNA is a member of Leave No Trace Canada.

Choosing Marine Trail Sites

Sites will be carefully selected with the following factors in mind: 

  • Reasonable paddling distance apart
  • Beaches are safely accessible at high and low tides
  • Beach or upland area on a durable surface, suitable for 'leave no trace' camping 
  • Scenic beauty
  • Respect and preserve cultural sites

These areas for overnight or day use, together with frequent accessible launching sites, will become the basis of the BC Marine Trails Network: a network of marine trails along the entire British Columbia coastline, designed for public recreational use for present and future generations.

The BCMT gratefully acknowleges the efforts of First Nations, Municipal, Regional, Provincial, and Federal agencies in making the BC Marine Trails vision a reality.

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