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In the News: The Group of Seven Lake Superior Trail

Updated: Oct 24, 2023

© Kristen Spence

Yesterday, Kirsten Spence, Project Coordinator for the Group of Seven Lake Superior Trail, spoke with Up North CBC's Jonathan Pinto about the Trail which is connecting people to landscapes which inspired Canada's famous Group of Seven Painters.

The Group of Seven was a group of Canadian landscape painters from 1920 to 1933, originally consisting of Franklin Carmichael (1890–1945), Lawren Harris (1885–1970), A. Y. Jackson (1882–1974), Frank Johnston (1888–1949), Arthur Lismer (1885–1969), J. E. H. MacDonald (1873–1932), and Frederick Varley (1881–1969). Later, A. J. Casson (1898–1992) was invited to join in 1926, Edwin Holgate (1892–1977) became a member in 1930, and LeMoine FitzGerald (1890–1956) joined in 1932. Believing that a distinct Canadian art could be developed through direct contact with nature, the Group of Seven is best known for its paintings inspired by the Canadian landscape, and initiated the first major Canadian national art movement.

Image depicts a white trail, surrounded by snowy hills and leading up to a series of brown rock formations. Caption reads: Group of Seven Lake Superior Trail.
© Group of Seven Lake Superior Trail

The Group of Seven Lake Superior Trail is a hiking trail from Pukaskwa National Park to Neys Provincial Park to celebrate the beauty of Lake Superior shown through the paintings of the Group of Seven. This project is a partnership between Biigtigong Nishnaabeg (Ojibways of the Pic River) and the Marathon Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). This project will allow fellow Canadians and visitors to explore our Canadian identify through the iconic painting locations of the Group of Seven. The trail is really the infrastructure to help deliver people to those sites. A much larger interpretive program is part of the third phase of the project which will tell the story of the Lake Superior effect on the Group of Seven. The Marathon area is uniquely situated along the coast of Lake Superior allowing for the Group of Seven Lake Superior Trail to have sites on both land and water. The central water route is the 1,000km Lake Superior Water Trail between Sault Ste Marie and Thunder Bay which is being developed by Trans Canada Trail and the Lake Superior Watershed Conservancy. The land trail route is also part of the Voyageur Trail from Pukaskwa National Park to Marathon. As the VTA’s long-term goal of connecting Sudbury/Manitoulin to Thunder Bay, this new trail project would provide more land trail to help make that connection. The trail from the Town of Marathon to the boat launch will be the hub of the new Trans Canada Trail water route and land trail integration. Amenities such as signage, washrooms and picnic areas will be developed there that will also support hikers of this trail as well as a staging area with parking



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