SAINT-QUENTIN (GNB) – The International Appalachian Trail at Mount Carleton has been added to the list of 11 Signature Trails highlighted in the recently announced Trails Action Plan.

“As the highest peak in the Maritime provinces, Mount Carleton attracts visitors from around the world,” said Tourism, Heritage and Culture Minister John Ames. “The International Appalachian Trail has been recognized not only for its popularity, but also for its incredible trail system and distinctive landscapes.”

Signature Trails are an important part of the Trails Action Plan, a $15.78-million investment in the province’s trails network. Eleven Signature Trails have been designated for development, from signage upgrades to infrastructure to long-term management plans.

The International Appalachian Trail is an extension of the Appalachian Trail in the United States. It extends from Mount Katahdin, Maine, through New Brunswick, Quebec, the remaining Atlantic provinces and into Greenland, Iceland, Europe and North Africa. The International Appalachian Trail includes a network of trails within Mount Carleton Provincial Park.

Mount Carleton is in the provincial park between Nepisiguit and Nictau lakes at the meeting point of several watersheds. As the highest peak in the Maritimes, Mount Carleton is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts.

“I am very pleased to see the provincial government play an active role in promoting Signature Trails as stated in the Trails Action Plan,” said New Brunswick Trails Council president Jim Fournier. “As president of the New Brunswick Trails Council, I appreciate the work of our representatives in improving our trails.”

Signature Trails are major regional tourism attractions. They encompass distinctive landscapes and vistas, from the Appalachian Mountain Range and Acadian forests to city waterfronts and coastlines. The Trails Action Plan is intended to promote 11 trails identified as having the potential to maximize local economic benefits while encouraging health and wellness. This will be done in part by improving accessibility, safety and the overall user experience.

The New Brunswick Tourism Growth Strategy will invest $100 million in tourism over the next eight years, with a goal of growing tourism-related GDP to $2 billion by 2025. Tourism visitor spending is estimated at $1.3 billion, making it the third-largest service sector in the province.