SATA News June 2019
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(Bike decorating ideas from Canadian Living online)

Shore Active Transportation Association  Love staying active

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Get out to celebrate summer - and Canada!!

"Cause a little bit of summer is what the whole year is all about.

- John Mayer 

Bikes on the road. 
          Boots on the trails. 
                    Boats on the water. 
Whatever your preference, there are plenty of options for getting out into nature in the coming weeks.  

Summer always has a way of encouraging more people to get out and get active.  Whether you choose a leisurely pace or a more competitive approach, there is lots of choice along the Eastern Shore and across the province.  Pump up your tires, lace up your hiking shoes, pick up a paddle - or share other activities.  Return to an old favourite or try something new.  

If you are looking for ideas of where to travel, you might want to start with our SATA on the Road for images of some great locations, including a brand new trail on the South Shore.  We have some images to inspire and links to help you plan your own active transportation adventure.   If you join a SATA outing and take pictures, please share on our SATA Facebook Group or send them for this newsletter ( 

This month's SATA Trails Updates includes an invitation to tender as well as a short article on some of the highlights about the trail - sort of a GBG 101.  Keep up-to-date on trail progress on our Gaetz Brook Greenway, SATA Trails  Facebook page

Check out scheduled Upcoming Events.  Our summer calendar will be updated soon with more walks, rides and other adventures. Visit our SATA Facebook Group for the most current info on events as well as pictures and other inspiration.

See In Other News for updates from other organizations that support active transportation.

Thanks this month to  Mary MacDonald, Judy Myatt, Julie Pearce and Shirley Smith for pictures and comments on outings.  Thanks for sharing with us on Facebook.  Pictures and stories of events are always a highlight.

Enjoy your Canada Day! Stay active. Stay save.
Celebrate our natural beauty with some outdoor activity with friends and family.  The forecast is calling lots of rain so gear up for a walk or ride in wet weather.  See you next month.

SATA Trails Updates

Celebrating Gaetz Brook Greenway trail progress

Invitation toTender:
Gaetz Brook Greenway Construction


SATA Trails Society is currently accepting tenders for the construction of the Gaetz Brook Greenway. The work consists generally of drainage improvements, grubbing and grading, the placement of aggregates and related items to construct a 3m wide trail approximately 6,380m in length along the former railbed. A tender package may be requested by using the Contact Us link from our web page

Tenders will be accepted up to 3PM, July 8, 2019. Bid security is required.

Gaetz Brook Greenway: What you need to know
John Hawkins, SATA Trails Director, has shared this concise summary of some of the highlights of Gaetz Brook Greenway (GBG) project.  Thanks to John for answering many of the questions we get about the GBG.

The GBG connects a gap in the Halifax Active Transportation Priorities Plan.  It forms an essential part of the Porters Lake and Surrounding Area Active Transportation Plan and has the endorsement of the Harbour East-Marine Drive Community Council.  It also forms part of and fills a gap in The Great Trail and is a designated link in The Blue Route bicycle network.

GBG connects community origins and destinations such as the Lions Club, GB Junior High School, Canadian Legion and retail and dining destinations.  It providing a safe Active Transportation (AT) route as an alternative to highway 7, which, due to narrow shoulders and high traffic volume, is unsuitable as an AT route. For these same reasons The Great Trail avoided naming Hwy 7 an alternate road route and instead endorses and supports the Gaetz Brook greenway.
The greenway has had a full environmental assessment by WSP consultants and the proposed work has been vetted and approved by the NS Dept of Environment.
GBG will be an attractant as part of growing interest in distance and day bicycle tourism because of its pleasant surroundings through a landscape varied with numerous water features and interpretive opportunities as well as nearby dining and shopping and the connection to Musquodoboit Harbour and other destinations along the Eastern Shore.
A gaspereau/trout fishing location exists at the beginning of the Greenway at East Chezzetcook Road.  This fishing location will be maintained and access is an important part of the trail design.  Other fishing locations along the trail will be identified and access determined.
The trail includes many interpretive opportunities.  The beginning of the trail at East Chezzetcook Road and Brookside Dr was the location of the East Chezzetcook train station and station master's residence.  While it was torn down in the 1980s the foundation remains to mark its location.  The station served passengers and provided freight and mail service.  An adjacent siding provided a loading area for bulk resources such as gravel and lumber extracted from the local area. Many people travelled to Dartmouth on the train for work and to access services.  As well people travelled to Musquodoboit Harbour area by train for medical services and visiting family and friends.  Just across the bridge from the station stood the Belleclaire Hotel built by the Conners family to coincide with the opening of the railway in 1916. While it ceased to function as a hotel many years ago, the stately building remains as a private residence. Many notable visitors stayed at this hotel and travelled through by train during the early 1900s.

We continue to require volunteers for trail maintenance.  If you are willing to help with future cleaning, contact and we'll let you know when we are planning a work party.  We typically meet for 2-3 hours so it is not a long commitment of time. 
HIke Nova Scotia Summit
 (May 24-26, 2019) 
Mary MacDonald and Shirley Smith from the SATA Board took part in the Hike Nova Scotia Summit and took advantage of the opportunity to network and learn about hiking trails and volunteers around the province.  They sent some pictures and stories from the event.

Shirley shared this note from her experience:
I went to my first Nova Scotia Trails Summit [in May] at Oak Island Resort. On Friday afternoon it was raining so I thought the hiking would be cancelled and I was ready to hit the pool... but I quickly learned no bad weather just bad clothing choices 😀😀 so Mary MacDonald and I went hiking at Blue Rocks. It challenged everything within me!! I don’t like edges and high cliffs!! I completed the hike and also hiked up Castle Rock. It was such a wonderful positive
Mary added some notes helping for planning a trip to the area:
The view from the top of Castle Rock the highest point in Lunenberg County was amazing. The trail up to this look off is 3.2km from East River on the Chester Connector rail trail. Then a little over 1km clime through the woods gets you to this lovely spot. There are bike racks at the base if you choose to cycle in on the rail trail, which would be a good option with kids

We have included a few pictures from a new trail (under construction and not yet named) close to Blue Rocks. It offers an exposed shale headland with lots of different lichens. Looks like a great addition to the South Shore group of trails!

Castle Rock Trail is a 8.2 kilometer loop trail  near East River 
Exit 20 Trail Improvements  (June 2019) 
Mary MacDonald has been monitoring the progress at Exit 20 and so she could provide this update:
A few pictures of the new trail and sidewalk connecting across Exit 20. This will make a safe connection across the highway to the Metro X bus stop and Porters Lake School for folks in West Chezzetcook. The grade is fairly steep on both sides so having it paved should make it easier for baby carriages and mobility aids. It is exciting to see this connection finally being made. It was one of the connections identified in our AT plan back in 2014.

As you see the access trails are quite steep. At this grade it would have been unusable to most if it had not been paved. Make sure your brakes work before coming down and go slow.

From the signage, it looks like this work is getting some Federal funding as well as provincial and municipal. It is my understand that this is the first time TIR has allowed an sidewalk to be built on existing infrastructure across a 100 series highway. I suspect there are lots of other communities in the province who will want this. It has to be a lot cheaper than a pedestrian bridge.

I have been wondering why they built a plywood box across the overpass. I haven’t see the plan so don’t know the details here but wondering if it might be a work platform and also a protection to prevent materials from falling on the cars below. I suspect they have to remove the existing railing and install something higher to prevent walkers from leaning over. Just my guess. This week should tell.

Thanks to Mary for keeping us posted - watch for more next month.

SATA on the Road

Spring flowers, wildlife sightings - and bug notes.

This month has seen a shift to more biking.  Everyone is happy to be back in the saddle but also still enjoy plenty of hiking time.  Some of these pictures and notes in this section were collected from our posts shared in our Facebook group.  Would you like to be part of a future newsletter?  Share your active transportation adventures in our SATA Facebook group or submit a paragraph or two for our newsletter by sending it to

Porters Lake Loop (May 20, 2019) 
The first SATA bike outing for the 2019 season.  A 25 k loop around Porters Lake with a stop for lunch at the Rose and Rooster in Grand Desert.
Musquodobit Trails bike / walk (June 20, 2019) 
Another adventure on a favourite local trail. Lots of flowers in bloom - and an interesting resident.

Visit the Musquodobit Trailway site for more info

Upcoming Activities

Bike week.  New trails.  Exploration and Adventure.

Currently scheduled outings:
Thurs. July 4 - East and West Petpeswick Road (ride 30-42k)

This ride has a couple of steep hills. We will ride down East Petpeswick Rd to Martinique Beach then  back up to Clam Shell Rd which will take us over to West Petpeswick Rd.  To Martinique and back is approx. 30km with the ride on West Petpeswick Rd adding another 12 km; so people  can choose a shorter ride by doing only the east side.

Thurs. July 11 - Heartland Tour - Bridgewater
This ride is part of The Heartland Tour 2019
From their website:  You are invited to join us for a day of fun choosing from a 83 km road ride, a 43 km road ride or a 25 km trail ride along the Bay to Bay Rail Trail which runs between Mahone Bay and Lunenburg (look for the new forest art along the trail).  If cycling isn't for you, join us on a 3 km Heart and Stroke walk. 

For details on these and other events, watch for news on Activities Calendar and in the Facebook group.  Our team of event leaders will be adding more Thursday morning active transportation outings soon and sometimes include special trips or events on other days.  Tune in often so you don't miss any of the fun!

As always, we would love to hear your suggestions for a hike, walk or other activity.  Are you interested in becoming an event leader?  You'd be welcome to join the team.  To learn how ton get involved, contact us at, comment in our Facebook group or talk to the team leaders on an outing.


  • We welcome ideas for future walks, or reviews of past events. Talk to activity leaders, share in our Facebook group or contact with any ideas.
  • SATA events are open for participants of all ages and abilities and follow a relaxed pace with plenty of stops for discovery, photography, conversation and other fun diversions.
  • Our SATA Facebook page has the most current news on outings, updates, weather changes, and event pictures.  

In Other News

Updates about other Active Transportation opportunities around Nova Scotia.

Great Trail Treasure Hunt Returns
Lace up your shoes and tune up your bike because the 2019 Great Trail Treasure Hunt kicks off June 19 with more boxes to be found and more amazing prizes to be won! 

Last year’s contest saw hundreds of Canadians from coast to coast to coast take to the 24,000-kilometre Great Trail network in pursuit of 100 hidden treasure boxes. This year, we’ve hidden 200 boxes, which means more to explore, and more chances to win. Learn more!

Nova Scotia Tourism: See NS by bike.
From Nova Scotia Tourism Outdoor Activities page:
From relaxing rails-to-trails cycling adventures through coastal communities, to the sweeping views of the ocean on the world-renowned, heart-pumping Cabot Trail, Nova Scotia has an ideal ride for you! Whether it’s a cycling tour, group ride or a solo outing down a quiet country road, check out these route maps to start planning your itinerary.

Bicycle Nova Scotia #BikeFriendly
Bicycle Nova Scotia is profiling #BikeFriendly businesses. If you are doing some biking around the province this summer, be sure to support and thank these business that are improving options for cyclists. Here is one recent profile from the Bicycle Nova Scotia Facebook page

Halifax Cycles and Guitars is a #BikeFriendly business built on honesty and love of all bikes. Since 2014, the goal at Halifax Cycles & Guitars has been to operate a shop where everyone is welcome and with the belief that customer service is the most important product.

Their Mechanics have over 60 years of combined experience. All repairs start with a conversation, a thorough inspection, and no obligations estimate. They strive to get our customers back in the saddle quickly, and you can find them at

NS Trails Federation
From the newsletter:
...on our website, we've added a video and PowerPoint slides of a presentation delivered by Gerry Post, Executive Director, Nova Scotia Accessibility Directorate. Gerry spoke at our recent AGM about the Accessibility Act in Nova Scotia and what it means for volunteer trail builders and managers. View his talk here:

Have you joined SATA yet?
Make your voice heard for Active Transportation on the Eastern Shore


Have you visited our website to register as a member?  Member numbers help us increase the impact of our campaigns.  If you haven't already joined, please take a minute to do so now and make your voice heard for a safe, sustainable active transportation network in Porters Lake and surrounding communities.

Basic membership is free but you must register.

We have introduced a Full Membership with an annual fee of $10.  This fee contributes directly to the cost of advocacy and AT events and also entitles you voting rights at the AGM.  Visit our Join Page to learn more. 


Our paid membership is temporarily on hold as our membership policies are currently under review.  Watch our Facebook  and website for updates. 

Also, a reminder that joining our Facebook page is NOT joining SATA or the SATA Trails Society.  Answering the questions and joining us on Facebook only allows you access to our closed Facebook group.

Help us achieve our vision of a safe, sustainable Active Transportation (AT) infrastructure connecting communities across the Eastern Shore.

Summer time is definitely outdoor time!  
Beaches, bikes & boots (hiking of course)!
Enjoy enjoying nature in NS.

Copyright © 2019 Shore Active Transportation Association (SATA), All rights reserved.

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