COQUILLE RIVER — While eco-tourism might not be a concept often associated with Coos County, it could be if the plan for an ambitious water trail is established along the Coquille River.
A potential 41-mile trail would go from the mouth of the river in Bandon to Hoffman Myrtle Grove State Park.
The idea is the brainchild of Bandon resident Brian Kraynik and Dave Lacey with the Oregon Coast Visitors Association. The men gave a presentation of their idea to Coos County Commissioners Tuesday and asked for the board's support.
Currently, Kraynik has a boat landing on the river in the works.
In the short term he plans to have rentals and tours outs of his Prosper property. The long term goal is to add interpretive signs and camping along the river.
“See some landings and destinations along the river that fit in with the ecology and touching on the history of the area,” Kraynik said.
He said there are plenty of properties that could be turned into day use or camping.
Kraynik also said he’d like to see the river trail tied in with Johnson Mill Pond and the Coquille Carousel.
Right now the project is in phase one, which consists of identifying partners and logistical planning.
Lacey said there are a lot of people who are interested in having the trail become a reality.
“This kind of product is something that people are looking for; outdoor recreation opportunities and unique outdoor recreation opportunities,” Lacey, who is also a guide at South Coast Tours LLC in Port Orford, said.
He said there isn’t currently a state designated water trail on the South Coast.
Kraynik is partnering with Lacey to have a fleet of boats at the Prosper Landing by May 1.
Lacey said the state designation is to promote tourism to the area, not to restrict access.
“It’s just a tourism draw, sort of a management idea,” he said.
At their board meeting Tuesday, commissioners expressed interest in writing a letter of support for the river trail.