Slack line provides thrills and views at Skaha Bluffs Park in the South Okanagan. (Penticton Western News)

Slack line provides thrills and views at Skaha Bluffs Park in the South Okanagan. (Penticton Western News)

Historic ranches, waterfront, trapline part of B.C.’s latest park expansion

Land worth $9.7 million bought or donated to preserve ecosystems

The B.C. government has added 650 hectares of land to its provincial parks and protected areas, one of the largest park systems in the world.

The environment ministry spent $6.8 million to acquire strategic properties to add to 16 parks and protected areas in 2019-20, according to its annual acquisition report released Jan. 13. Property donations from individuals, corporations and conservation groups brought the total value of the land acquired to $9.7 million.

• Chasm Park: Two historic ranches were donated to the park north of Cache Creek along Highway 97. Chasm Park protects the river canyon of Chasm Creek and the Bonaparte River, and the two holdings within it, valued at $420,000, were donated under a federal ecological gift program in memory of two pioneer ranchers.

• Tweedsmuir Park: A private holding near Bella Coola west of Williams Lake was purchased for $575,000 and added to one of B.C.’s largest parks. The purchase prevents it from being logged and enhances salmon and grizzly bear habitat.

• Octopus Islands Marine Park: The Marine Parks Forever Society donated $1.5 million to buy 20 hectars in the Okisollo Channel off Quadra Island, north of Campbell River. The boat-access park includes several small islands with paddling, hiking, fishing and wilderness camping.

• Cowichan River Park: A donation of $395,000 from the B.C. Parks Foundation allowed acquisition of two hectares to add to the north edge of the park west of Duncan. The park protects sections of the Cowichan River, a heritage-designated salmon and steelhead river, and the latest land is part of a larger land assembly for the recreation and conservation corridor.

• Cape Scott Park: Two properties within the northern Vancouver Island park were purchased for $515,000. One has waterfront on Guise Bay, adding to 115 km of ocean frontage and remote beaches west of Port Hardy.

• Naikoon Park: Two private holdings within the park at the northern tip of Haida Gwaii were bought for $411,000. The park, northeast of Masset, includes 100 km of beaches as well as bogs, sand dunes, wetlands and rainforest with hiking, fishing and wilderness camping.

• Okanagan Mountain Park: A 21.2 hectare parcel on Okanagan Lake across from Peachland was donated as part of a rezoning and subdivision, providing a buffer between the park and an adjacent residential area. The property was valued at more than $1 million.

• Skaha Bluffs Park: A 65-hectare property near the north end of Skaha Lake, valued at more than $1 million, was donated to add to the park south of Penticton. Skaha Bluffs offers rock climbing and hiking, with protected habitat for bighorn sheep, western screech owl and other rare species.

• Landstrom Bar: Across the Fraser River from Hope, the park has hiking and public access to about one km of river frontage. A one-hectare parcel was bought for $762,500 to develop public access and a parking area.

• Jewel Lake Park: A 16-hectare parcel at the south end of the lake was purchased for $615,000 to add to the camping and fishing opportunities. Located north of Greenwood and Grand Forks, Jewel Lake is a popular spot to fly fish for rainbow trout.

• Valhalla Park: A 32 hectare holding within the park west of Slocan was purchased for $175,000 to prevent incompatible uses from occurring. A trapline tenure was also bought out for $50,000, to prevent fur-bearing animal harvesting in the park on the west side of Slocan Lake in the Selkirk Mountains.

• Purcell Wilderness Conservancy: Part of an ongoing acquisition in the mountains north of Nelson and Cranbrook, 18 hectares of waterfront on Kootenay Lake was purchased for $640,800. The remote, undeveloped region is considered the only intact ecosystem in southeastern B.C.

• Mount Pope Park: A day-use park on Stuart Lake, northwest of Fort St. James, the area is popular with hikers and rock climbers, with limestone rock formations and caves. Land valued at $220,000 was acquired to use as a parking area for trail users.

• Mount Robson Park: A 0.9 hectare right-of-way bought for $50,000 protects a portion of the Overlander Trail along the Fraser River north of Valemount. Mount Robson is the second oldest park in B.C. on the western slope of the North Continental Range.

RELATED: Lost snowmobiler rescued from Greystokes Park

RELATED: Park camping restricted to B.C. residents only

• Cathedral Park: Two properties totalling 82 hectares were transferred from Okanagan College for $1 to add to the park southwest of Keremeos. The park is located between the dense forest of the Cascade Mountains and the desert-like South Okanagan Valley.

• West Twin Protected Area: A 59 hectare parcel along the Fraser River was bought for $120,000 to add to the only protected corridor across the Robson Valley trench, northwest of McBride.

• Muncho Lake Park: A 2.5 hectare lakefront property was purchased for $590,000 to provide a campsite at Muncho Lake, at Mile 463 of the Alaska Highway, west of Fort Nelson.

• Lac du Bois Grasslands: Eight hectares of land north of Kamloops was donated to the protected area, which covers three distinct grassland communities considered unique in western North America.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureBC politics

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

Just Posted

Eighteen-year-old Aidan Webber died in a marine accident in 2019. He was a Canadian Junior BMX champion from Nanaimo. (Submitted)
Inadequate safety training a factor in teen BMX star’s workplace death in 2019

Aidan Webber was crushed by a barge at a fish farm near Port Hardy

Hecht Beach cabin in ashes. (Submitted)
Beloved secret cabin lost to fire on the North Island’s west coast

The trappers cabin was shared with locals, but kept mostly secret

An Atlantic salmon is seen during a Department of Fisheries and Oceans fish health audit at a fish farm near Campbell River, B.C. in 2018. Mowi Canada has applied to the Federal Court of Canada for a judicial review of the decision by Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan to phase out salmon farming in the Discovery Islands by June, 2022. (Canadian Press/Jonathan Hayward photo)
Major B.C. salmon farms seek court intervention in Discovery Islands ban

Fisheries minister is phasing out operations in the area by June 2022

Michelle Lau with donations that have already been contributed for families kept away from home due to the Town Park Apartments fire. (Zoe Ducklow Photo)
Fundraiser started for tenants left hanging after apartment fire

Tenants not allowed back in to get personal items, so in need of clothes, food, gift cards

A mattress on fire gutted the second floor hallway at Town Park Apartments C-block Jan. 17. (Port Hardy Fire Rescue images)
‘Suspicious’ Port Hardy apartment fire could keep tenants out of their homes for months

A burning mattress created smoke and heat, causing several tenants to jump from windows

Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin, vice-president of logistics and operations at the Public Health Agency of Canada, speaks at a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa, on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
B.C. records 500 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, 14 deaths

Outbreak at Surrey Pretrial jail, two more in health care

A suspect has been arrested in connection with fires at Drinkwater Elementary (pictured) and École Mount Prevost. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Arson suspect arrested after fires at Cowichan Valley schools

Drinkwater Elementary and Mount Prevost schools hit within a week

A woman writes a message on a memorial mural wall by street artist James “Smokey Devil” Hardy during a memorial to remember victims of illicit drug overdose deaths on International Overdose Awareness Day, in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on Monday, August 31, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. paramedics respond to record-breaking number of overdose calls in 2020

On the front lines, COVID-19 has not only led to more calls, but increased the complexity

Chartwell Malaspina Care Residence in Nanaimo. (News Bulletin file photo)
Two Nanaimo care-home residents have died during COVID-19 outbreak

Death reported Monday was the second related to Chartwell Malaspina outbreak, says Island Health

Rod Bitten of Union Bay won $500,000 in the Lotto Max draw on Jan. 15. Photo supplied
Vancouver Island electrician gets shocking surprise with $500K Extra win

Rod Bitten has been hard at work with home renovations, which is… Continue reading

Oyster River Fire Rescue members were called out to a suspicious fire in Black Creek. Two vehicles parked at a private residence were destroyed by fire. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Rescue
Suspicious fire destroys two vehicles at Vancouver Island residence

Oyster River Fire Rescue personnel were dispatched to a fire at a… Continue reading

Members of the BC RCMP Explosive Disposal Unit (EDU) is on route to Drummond Park opposite of Fulford Habour on Saltspring Island after the discovery of a suspicious cylindrical-shaped device. (Google/Screencap)
Bomb disposal unit en route to Salt Spring Island after suspicious device found in park

Police say a resident discovered the device Wednesday morning in Drummond Park opposite BC Ferries terminal

Seven streets in downtown Duncan, including Station Street, will soon have new native names added to their signage. (Submitted graphic)
New Duncan street signs will be in English and Hul’q’umi’num

Seven streets to get additional names in First Nations language

Southern resident killer whales in B.C. waters. Research shows the population’s females are more negatively influenced by vessel traffic than males. (Photo supplied by Ocean Wise Conservation Association)
Female orcas less likely to feed in presence of vessel traffic: study

Research the southern resident population raises concerns over reproduction capacity

Most Read