Joffre Lakes Provincial Park.. (Black Press Media files)

Joffre Lakes Provincial Park.. (Black Press Media files)

BC Parks considering a day-use pass system for popular locations to avoid overcrowding

Although some parks have reopened, B.C.’s busiest parks have remained shut

The province is considering bringing in a free pass system for day-use of popular BC Parks to reduce crowding and maintain physical distancing.

In an email Monday (July 20), BC Parks said “the most popular parks pose some unique challenges” as it reopens areas around the province. Many BC Parks reopened for day-use on May 14, and others on June 1, but some of the busier ones, including Garibaldi, Myra-Bellevue Provincial Park and Joffre Lakes remain shut.

READ MORE: Selected B.C. parks set to open for day use May 14

“Ever since we closed parks, we have been working on a phased approach to reopen, working together so people can enjoy parks while managing issues of public safety and the health of the environment,” BC Parks said in a statement.

“A proposed free day-use pass program is one approach we have been considering to support the next phase of a safe and managed parks reopening.”

According to the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, more than 26 million people visit B.C.’s parks each year. In a recently released report, the society said COVID-19 “highlighted the deep cracks in a faulty system” that made it inevitable that parks would close down due to the pandemic.

“Parks are becoming increasingly overcrowded, with a marked increase in degraded and aging infrastructure,” the report stated.

“Park staff need resources to monitor visitors and the natural systems around them, from campgrounds to water quality to wildlife management.”

READ MORE: ‘We’re on the edge’: B.C. records 102 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths since Friday


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

BC ParksCoronavirusparks

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

West Shore RCMP pulled over a 2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee on Nov. 23 after noting that it didn’t appear safe for the road. (West Shore RCMP)
West Shore RCMP pull over vehicle held together by tape and cargo strap

RCMP deemed the vehicle unsafe for the road and had it towed away

The Vancouver Island Crisis Society has seen a five per cent rise in call volumes compared to this time last year. (Black Press Media file photo)
Winter blues a concern for Vancouver Islanders during COVID-19 Christmas season

Statistics show British Columbians anticipate worsening mental health

Jason Soukochoff is wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, say Victoria police. (Courtesy VicPD)
Victoria police seek man with violent criminal history against elderly

Jason Soukochoff wanted on Canada-wide warrant for parole violations

Sooke parks staff are all smiles as they welcome the opportunity to bring the holiday spirit to the community with the hanging of festive décor on light standards. (Contributed - District of Sooke)
Sooke lighting up holiday spirit

Sooke Road roundabout lights up Dec. 1

The growing field lacrosse program at Royal Bay Secondary has produced a number of scholarships for its players to American universities, starting in the fall 2021. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
Five Royal Bay students sign Lacrosse scholarships at U.S. universities

“It’s a village that raises these kids,” says lacrosse coach

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest day of pandemic with 13 deaths, 738 new COVID-19 cases

Number of people in hospital is nearing 300, while total cases near 30,000

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Nov. 24

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(AP Photo/Haven Daley)
POLL: Do you think the current COVID-19 restrictions should continue beyond Dec. 7?

One week into the new restrictions to curtail the spread of the… Continue reading

(File photo)
Alberta woman charged after allegedly hitting boy with watermelon at Okanagan campsite

Police say a disagreement among friends at an Adams Lake campsite turned ugly

Court of Appeal for British Columbia in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
B.C. woman loses appeal to have second child by using late husband’s sperm

Assisted Human Reproduction Act prohibits the removal of human reproductive material from a donor without consent

An excavator was stolen from a rural property south of Nanaimo this month, say police. (Photos submitted)
Excavator stolen from property south of Nanaimo

Bobcat Mini believed to have been stolen between Nov. 12-14, say RCMP

Krista Macinnis displays the homework assignment that her Grade 6 daughter received on Tuesday. (Submitted photo)
B.C. mom angry that students asked to list positive stories about residential schools

Daughter’s Grade 6 class asked to write down 5 positive stories or facts

B.C. projects targeting the restoration of sockeye salmon stocks in the Fraser and Columbia Watersheds will share in $10.9 million of federal funding to protect species at risk. (Kenny Regan photo)
13 projects protecting B.C. aquatic species at risk receive $11 million in federal funding

Salmon and marine mammals expected to benefit from ecosystem-based approach

Most Read