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A Celebration of Winter: Snowmobilers Association of Nova Scotia Expands Provincial Snowmobiling Trails in Partnership with Irving Woodlands


Nova Scotia has long boasted extensive and varied winter recreation areas, and the Snowmobilers Association of Nova Scotia (SANS) adds even more! SANS develops and maintains an enormous number of trails that stretch 4,700 kilometers province-wide, from the Annapolis Valley to the Cape Breton Highlands. They have been managing Nova Scotian trails for over 50 years as a non-for-profit association and provide leadership and support to 21 snowmobile clubs within four provincial zones. They prove themselves to be excellent stewards of the land and have a commitment to the sustainable growth of the forests and the protection of our natural wonders. Irving Woodlands is pleased to partner with SANS to grow their network of winter recreation land, with an agreement that covers 118 kilometers of managed trails on J.D. Irving, Limited land. 

 Driftclimbers SANS


SANS President Don Stewart says: “The Snowmobilers Association of Nova Scotia is very excited to have this J.D. Irving, Limited land use agreement in place to support our recreational trail management activities across Nova Scotia. SANS, a volunteer driven non-profit association, welcomes the opportunity to work with J.D. Irving, Limited in the years ahead to provide recreational trail access to all our residents. This agreement with the long-term commitment of J.D. Irving, Limited will allow investment in significant trail infrastructure.”

 CMSC Overpass SANS


SANS operates with a commitment to the conservation and preservation of Canada’s natural environment, while encouraging a network that dedicates themselves to trail development, safety, public education, and advocacy. While organized snowmobiling has been a pastime for over 30 years in the province, the past 15 years have seen dedicated local snowmobile club volunteers accomplish impressive developments. This labour of love includes securing, preparing, maintaining, and funding the trails. With support from landowners such as J.D. Irving, Limited, the local clubs and the SANS may enjoy an extensive network of trail systems to discover the gift of nature. 

“Any additional agreements our associations can make with landowners in Nova Scotia is a step in the right direction for our outdoor activities and province as a whole.  These agreements allow access throughout our rural corridor and bring a welcomed economic stimulus to our rural businesses.  In many areas, trails are designed to access these businesses with cooperation of large and small landowner agreements”, says Tory Rushton, MLA for Cumberland South.

 SANS Photo 2


Murray Scott, Mayor of the Municipality of Cumberland, also expressed his approval. “I am extremely pleased to offer my support and congratulations to J.D. Irving, Limited and SANS, the snowmobile association of Nova Scotia on their recent land use agreement which will allow for SANS members to construct and to continue to use trails throughout the province on lands owned in Nova Scotia by J.D. Irving, Limited. The snowmobile industry contributes to the health and well-being of Nova Scotians and is a tremendous supporter of our tourism industry and the economy in general. 

I personally want to thank J.D. Irving, Limited for their willingness to allow the use of their property by this very popular sport and recognizing that the use of private land is vital for the sport to continue to be successful. I also want to thank and congratulate the volunteers with SANS who give so much of themselves to the association.” 

The new trails will be developed with close attention paid to the preservation of the land and with a goal of sustainable development that will not compromise the quality of environment for future generations. They are designed with established best practices in mind and are engineered and repaired wherever needed, with a Risk Management Committee that regularly reviews snowmobile trail safety and minimizes risk.

 SANS Final Photo


“The woods in Nova Scotia provide huge benefits to communities where we live and work, including good-paying forestry jobs and a wide variety of recreation possibilities.  This agreement focuses on shared priorities with the Snowmobile Association of Nova Scotia: safely using outdoor recreational areas while conserving unique species on the land and protecting waterways.  We hope these trails provide enjoyment for Nova Scotians and visitors to the province for many years to come.” says Robert Fawcett, Director of Corporate Relations with the Woodlands Division.