We have been local tourists in Clearwater for almost two weeks and have entered the wonderful Wells Gray Park to hike and explore every day.
It is a great shame that in spite of Wells Grey being one of the largest parks in B.C. and a lucrative draw for huge numbers of tourists, international and local, there are no park rangers.
What a missed opportunity to educate people and protect the flora and fauna of our parks.
It was disappointing to find out Trophy Mountain was closed for the past two weeks due to the failure of the Kamloops office to send out a team to assess the status of the grizzly bear feeding on the glacier lilies in the alpine. Of course we are in favour of the bear being allowed to feed without the disturbance of tourists, but to not even send staff to check up on the situation for more than two weeks during prime tourist and hiking time is in need of an explanation by parks administration.
Much-needed rangers on site could have addressed this situation in an ongoing manner to the benefit of all, including the bear. It could have been an opportunity to educate the public about bear behaviour instead of sending away disappointed and angry people that I heard complaining to the harried Clearwater Information Centre staff, who do a remarkable job of trying to address the needs of everyone.
Why are they left to explain what should be a ranger’s role?
I know very well that our parks are underfunded, but still it was an eye-opener to spend so much time in this popular park and not see any park officials.
I support introducing pay parking and/or entrance fees to get money into our parks so they can be better managed and protected.
People in this area need jobs. Another local mill has just shut down. What better way to provide jobs than in the park?