The West Kootenay Road Runner Motorcycle group planting schoolers willows in Blewett.

The West Kootenay Road Runner Motorcycle group planting schoolers willows in Blewett.

Motorcyclists reclamation ride

Motorcyclists saddled up with the invasive plant committee to plant trees and shrubs to restore degraded wetland habitat in Blewett.

Motorcyclists saddled up with the invasive plant committee to plant trees and shrubs to restore degraded wetland habitat in Blewett today. The West Kootenay Road Runner Motorcycle group with riders from Fruitvale, Trail, Balfour and Nelson held their first annual Reclamation Ride for the Environment.

Riders did a group ride to the restoration site in Blewett by the old Taghum bridge. More than 23 motorcyclists put their work gloves on and picked up shovels as they partnered with the Central Kootenay Invasive Plant Committee (CKIPC).

The event was organized by CKIPC board member Thor Smestad who has been involved with the restorative planting on Nelson Lakeside Park trail close to the airport. As a recent motorcycle owner, he decided to organize this first ever event.

“I got a motorcycle last year and felt this would help justify it,” Smestad said. “To offset the carbon.”

The group planted a variety of willows. Sitka willow, red osier dogwood and cottonwood were planted on the shoreline and up the steep bank, while numerous drought tolerant schooler’s willows were planted at the top of the hill along the roadside.