Kenichi Weng

Register now for camping 101 course by Parks Canada

Federal agency holding its National Urban Learn-to Camp Event at Fort Rodd Hill National Historic Site from June 16 to June 17

Camping is a quintessential Canadian summer pastime, but for some newcomers to the country it can be an alluring yet intimidating right of passage.

Whether you’re new to camping or new to Canada, or both, Parks Canada is holding its National Urban Learn-to Camp Event for the second year to help teach people all over Canada the fundamentals of outdoor camping.

In Greater Victoria, the event is held at Fort Rodd Hill National Historic Site from June 16 to June 17.

“They might have some fears about camping, they might have some trepidation,” Parks Canada West Coast public education manager Dennis Wasylenko said. “We’re helping them out the first time so that they can get the skills and confidence to do it on their own in the future.”

People are often unsure about the logistics of camping, such as preparing for weather, setting up a tent or cooking while camping. Beyond that, some have never slept outside before and have some concerns over what it will be like.

“To do it in a group setting really helps them feel more comfortable,” Wasylenko said. “If they’re participating in the program they’re obviously at a point at their time in Canada that they’re ready to start trying those things. So we’re just giving them a helping hand.”

Participants learn to set up a camp, with tents and sleeping pads donated by Mountain Equipment Co-op. They’re also taught food preparation, as well as taking part in nature walks and journaling. Participants are also shown how to camp ethically, leaving no footprint of their visit behind.

“It’s really about the connection to the outdoors,” Wasylenko said. “I think it really builds and forms a personal connection.”

Registration is mandatory and needs to be confirmed by Tuesday, June 12. Visit or email for more information and to register.

There will be a second, slightly more advanced Learn-to Camp event in July at Pacific Rim National Park near Tofino.

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