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Hundreds journey up Moose Mountain to protest west Bragg Creek logging plan

Hundreds gathered at the site of a proposed logging project in west Bragg Creek, just outside Kananaskis Country, calling for the protection of the area.

The group hiked and biked up Moose Mountain to protest in one of the spaces that could be clear-cut, one night after more than 650 people gathered at a public feedback event in Cochrane held by the logging company.

“These actions can feel like you are shouting in a vacuum when it’s primarily online-organized, and so this lets people know how many other people care about these trails, lets them feel a part of something,” said Jeff Woodgate, Grow Kananaskis founder.

Hundreds gathered at the site of a proposed logging project in Kananaskis, calling for the protection of the area.

West Fraser bought rights to the timber licence last fall when it bought out Spray Lakes Sawmills in Cochrane and plans to log 450 hectares of forests, including a dozen hiking and mountain bike trails impacting up to 30 kilometres of track.

“We use that space all the time. It represents what Alberta represents to us,” said Caroline Fisher, who created signs for the protest as well.

Caroline Fisher created signs for the protest.

The land is not protected.

That’s why Albertans who love to hike, bike, snowshoe and ski here are speaking up.

“We’re wondering if the name of conservation pass should perhaps be changed to resource extraction pass because it seems like all of our natural areas are open for resource extraction.”

West Fraser said it welcomes feedback and it might protect some views and trails.

The cut would not go ahead until 2026, which gives opponents some hope.

Aside from the environmental impact, protesters say there was minimal consultation with or consideration for local businesses.

Trail and traffic counters in Kananaskis show about 300,000 people visit each year. 

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