FAQ

The Great Trail of Canada App
What do the Trail colours represent?
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Green = Land Trail
Blue = Water Trail
Blue dotted line = Ferry
A full legend is coming soon
Explore the Map
What information can I find on the interactive map?
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  • Trail Information: Clicking on an individual Trail will give you access to basic information on that trail such as its name, photos, description, length, trail type, permitted activities, environment, PDF map (when available) and other resources (see What are some useful tips and shortcuts for using the interactive map? for instructions on how to interact with trail sections and open the right panel window).
  • Other Information: You will find other useful information when zooming and dragging with the map (in order to access these points, you must zoom in until you can see them on the map):
    • Warnings: General warnings or road information on The Trail.
    • Stops: Parking, Access Point and Rest Area. Click any location to see what services are available. Services can include information centre, trailhead, restrooms, water and/or camping. You can also get directions to Parking and Access Points.
  • Explore Photos: Click the icon with the camera ("Photos") at the bottom of the map to explore nearest trail photos. Click on any photo to see specific Trail Information. If no photos appear, navigate around until you find one!

What are some useful tips and shortcuts for using the interactive map?
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  • Interact with trails: Click any part of the Trail and a right panel window will appear with basic information (name, photos, description, length, trail type, activities, environment, trail type, PDF map, other resources, etc.).
  • Navigation: Hold the left button of your mouse to drag the map in any direction.
  • Zoom in/out: There are four different ways to zoom in or out:
    • Scale Bar: Use the Scale Bar arrows on the right side of the map to zoom in or out. Zoom to a specific level by clicking anywhere on the vertical bar.
    • Mouse Wheel: Roll your mouse wheel forward to zoom in or backward to zoom out.
    • Double-Click: Double-click anywhere on the map to zoom in to that location.
    • SHIFT Key: Hold down the SHIFT key and draw a square zone with the mouse to zoom in on a particular location.
  • Base maps: Switch the base map by clicking this icon Basemap Gallery on the left side. Then select any basemap such as "Topographic" (default), "Imagery", "Dark Gray Canvas", etc.
  • Legend: Click this icon Legend on the left side to see the legend.
  • Geolocation: Click the target icon on the left side to turn on and off the geolocation. This functionality will locate your current position on the map.

How to get Paper Maps or to create my own map of the Trail?
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To get paper maps of a specific Trail, you need to click it to open the right panel window and you will see "TCT Map" information (not available for all trails). Just click "Open PDF" to open it in another tab. See What are some useful tips and shortcuts for using the interactive map for more information around interacting with the Trail.

Follow these steps to create your own map:

  • Click the Custom Map icon Custom Map on the top bar of the interactive map screen. Click the “X” in the upper right corner to close the window and start again.
  • Choose the location you wish to display on your map by using the pan or zoom.
  • Choose your base map (click the Basemap Gallery icon on the left side of the interactive map).
  • Fill in the form by entering a title and a description, and by choosing a page size and an output format. Click “Submit” to create the map.
  • Once the map is created, open it by clicking its name from the list. The map will open in a new browser tab. You can save it to your computer.
NOTE: Many maps can be created one after the other. Just click "Clear Maps" to start over with a fresh list.

How do I download data of the Trail?
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Follow these steps to download data of a specific trail:

  • Click any trail on the map. At the bottom of the Trail Information window, click the Download icon.
  • Select a download format: KML (Google Earth) or GPX (GPS device). Note that only data for operational trails will be downloaded. GPX data will be downloaded as ZIP files.
  • Click “Download” to generate the file. Click the output once created from the list. A “Save As” dialog window will open in order save to your computer.

NOTE: Many download can be created one after the other. Just click "Clear List" to start over with a fresh list.

NOTE: To download longer stretches of The Trail, see How do I measure a section of the Trail? instructions.

How do I measure a section of the Trail?
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Follow these steps to measure a section along the Trail (+ option to download The Trail):

  • Click the Measure the Trail icon Measure the Trail on the top bar of the interactive map screen. A plus sign will appear with the word “Start” next to it when the pointer is on the top of the map.
  • Click on the location where you want your line to start. Once you’ve selected a starting point the cursor will automatically change from “start” to “end”. Click on the location where you want your line to end. The length of the measured section will appear.
  • Click "Clear" to start again.
  • Option: Click the button "Download Highlighted Trail" to download the measured portion of the Trail (see How do I download data of the Trail? for download instructions).

How can I search a Trail or a Place?
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Start to type text in the top-left "Search" box. The same box can be used to search:

  • Trails: Click the Trail name from the list to zoom to it and open its related information.
  • Places: Click the Place name from the list to zoom to it (address, city, province and/or postal code are accepted).

How can I find Parking, Access Points and Rest Areas?
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In order to access these stops, you must zoom in until you can see them on the map. Click any of those point icons (“Parking”, “Access Point”, “Rest Area”) and a right panel window will appear with available services, such as: information center, trailhead, restroom, water or camping.

Did you find what you were looking for?
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Do you have a question that wasn’t covered in our interactive map FAQ section? We would love to hear from you! Send your questions to info@tctrail.ca. We will do our best to answer your questions and to update this help section to reflect the needs of our users. Thank you in advance for the feedback!

The Great Trail of Canada
How much of The Great Trail of Canada has been connected?
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To date, nearly 27,000 kilometres of the Trail are operational. Four out of five Canadians live within 30 minutes of the Trail.
How can I find the Trail in my area?
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Use our interactive map or download The Great Trail app to find the Trail closest to you. You can download a map for a specific Trail section or maps for an entire province or territory. Visit the websites of our provincial and territorial partners. They offer a wealth of information about the Trail in every province and territory.
How does the Trail benefit Canada and Canadians?
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National Legacy: creating a sustainable gift to future generations.
Health: inspiring active living and transportation.
Environment: preserving green space and promoting conservation.
Education: deepening awareness of Canada’s history, culture and natural heritage.
Economic Development: stimulating tourism and creating jobs.
Who owns, builds and maintains the Trail?
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The Great Trail of Canada is a community-based project. Trail sections are owned, operated and maintained by local organizations, provincial authorities, national agencies and municipalities across Canada. Trans Canada Trail does not own or operate any trail. Trans Canada Trail is represented by provincial and territorial organizations that are responsible for championing the cause of the Trail in their region. These provincial and territorial partners, together with local trail-building organizations, are an integral part of Trans Canada Trail and are the driving force behind its development.
Who funds the Trail?
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The Trail is truly a gift from Canadians to Canadians, and the Trail has the support of Canadians from all regions and walks of life. The Trail is also supported by corporations, foundations and all levels of government. The Government of Canada is also currently matching 50 cents for every dollar donated to the TCT in support of the Trail.
What are the six preferred activities you can enjoy on The Great Trail?
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Walking/hiking, cycling, paddling, horseback riding, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.
Why is the Trail now called The Great Trail of Canada?
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As the national connection of the Trail approached, we realized that what made the prospect of a connected Trail incredible was not just the fact that it would cross the country and become one of the world’s longest network of trails. The truly great Canadian spirit and dedication made that dream a reality.


Our supporters have stood beside us for years, sometimes decades, as we shed sweat and tears to bring the impossible dream of connection to fruition. They are what is truly great about The Great Trail of Canada. The work that they set out to accomplish, the resistance they pushed against and their generosity epitomize Canada’s greatness. Thanks to early and long-standing supporters, Canada is home to the world’s longest network of recreational multi-use trails – something that we can all take great pride in.


Changing the name of the physical trail was not a rejection of the Trans Canada Trail name , and it was not decided on a whim. It involved months of careful consideration and risk assessment, and thorough conversations with experts and stakeholders. Many of our local Trail groups have responded positively to the change.


We determined that we could substantially increase the Trail’s profile locally and abroad if we would celebrate connection with a name that transcends what the Trail is physically – a trail system that connects Canada from coast to coast to coast – and conveys what it represented and would represent moving forward.


The Great Trail appeals to a wide audience of Canadians and international audiences, and will encourage people to discover, use and treasure the Trail. Our goal is that Canadians will become aware of the Trail, embrace it and ultimately engage with it by sharing their experiences and supporting it financially.


The word “great” reflects much of what sets our Trail apart from other trails around the world. There is greatness not just in its size. There is greatness in the achievement that it symbolizes and the diverse landscapes it crosses. Most of all, it refers to the greatness of thousands of people who have supported us every step of the way – even when it seemed impossible.


What is the difference between Trans Canada Trail and The Great Trail of Canada?
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Trans Canada Trail continues to be our corporate name as a not-for-profit entity, while The Great Trail of Canada is the physical trail, the product that is delivered in conjunction with our Trail partners, as well as our marketing partners and corporate sponsors.
Pavilion Inscription Program
Why did the Pavilion Inscription Program end?
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The Pavilion Inscription Program ran from 1993 to 2012. It offered Canadians the opportunity to sponsor a metre of Trail and be recognized with an inscription on one of 88 pavilions across Canada. Although the response to the Pavilion Inscription Program was positive, this program was quite costly to maintain and was drawing much needed resources away from our mission to develop and connect a national Trail for all Canadians.
When did the Pavilion Inscription Program end?
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We officially ended the Pavilion Inscription Program on March 31, 2012.
What happened to the pavilions?
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In 2013, many of the pavilions were discovered to have fallen into disrepair due to weather erosion and vandalism, and the decision was made by many of the local communities and/or Trail partner organizations to have them decommissioned. The remaining 26 pavilions, located mostly in urban centres across Canada, were redesigned and refreshed for Canada 150. All inscriptions from the decommissioned pavilions were transferred to the remaining 26 pavilions.
I am an inscription donor/recipient. Is (are) my inscription(s) still in the pavilions?
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Yes. All inscriptions remain in the existing 26 pavilions across Canada, and include all of the inscriptions that were transferred from the decommissioned pavilions. The existing pavilions are maintained by local Trail organizations across the country.
How can I find the location of my inscription?
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If you would like to know the location of your inscription, and directions to the pavilion where it is found, please visit TheGreatTrail.ca/pavilion-lookup. You can also contact our Donor Services Team at 1-800-465-3636 or donorservices@tctrail.ca.
Will I be able to make any changes to my existing inscription?
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No, you will not be able to change existing inscriptions. The Pavilion Inscription Program ended in 2012, and we are not making updates to previous inscription panels.
Leadership Recognition Program
What is the Leadership Recognition Program?
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This program was originally initiated in 2015 to recognize Trans Canada Trail donors giving $1,000 or more, in the lead-up to the connection of The Great Trail of Canada, and to honour Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation in the summer of 2017. At the time, the recognition was only offered in the Canada 150 celebratory Ottawa pavilion.
Will my name remain in the celebratory Ottawa pavilion if it is already there?
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Yes, if you currently are recognized in the celebratory Ottawa pavilion, your name will remain there.
Where is the location of the celebratory Ottawa pavilion?
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Take Commissioner Drive off the Bronson and Albert Street intersection. It is on the NCC path, close to Portage Bridge.
Is the Leadership Recognition Program still running?
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The program was so well received by our donors that we decided to continue offering recognition on six other pavilions across Canada – Victoria, Vancouver, Toronto, Caledon, Halifax and Fredericton – until March 31, 2020. The Program is now closed, but may be re-opened at a later date.
Why was recognition only offered on the six pavilions?
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All other pavilions across Canada are at full capacity and could not accommodate any additional names.
Why does it cost $1,000 to get recognition in the pavilions?
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This special program recognizes donors giving $1,000 or more in one of the six pavilions as an expression of gratitude to exceptional donors for their outstanding commitment to Trans Canada Trail.
How does this program differ from the Pavilion Inscription Program?
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Until 2012, donors to the Pavilion Inscription Program were recognized on a pavilion of their choice for sponsoring a metre of Trail. The Leadership Recognition Program was a special program in which gifts of $1,000 or more were recognized on the celebratory Ottawa Pavilion for Canada 150, and after 2017, on their choice of one of six other pavilions. It was our way of highlighting and recognizing exceptional donors for their outstanding commitment to Trans Canada Trail.