Volunteer sherpas transport Judy Norbury along the boardwalk at Paradise Meadows. Photo supplied

Volunteer sherpas transport Judy Norbury along the boardwalk at Paradise Meadows. Photo supplied

Information Centre opens at Strathcona Provincial Park

Strathcona Wilderness Institute needs volunteers

The Strathcona Wilderness Institute (SWI) is a non-profit society incorporated to promote responsible and enjoyable use of the wilderness areas of Strathcona Provincial Park. It has two information huts up at Mt. Washington near Raven Lodge, and at the entrance to the Buttle Lake areas just off Highway 28. Now that summer has started, and the snow is finally melting away, the society would like to announce that the SWI Centre is open for visitors to learn more about the park.

Almost every weekend throughout the summer, SWI will be hosting special events along with guided nature walks and hikes. In particular, it will be hosting three TrailRider and Accessibility Days, one each month on July 24, Aug. 20 and Sept 25. The TrailRider is a reclined wheelchair that is maneuvered by two volunteers (‘sherpas’) along the trails and boardwalks in the park. These Accessibility Days will allow for those that normally can’t experience the beautiful meadows and trails of the park that opportunity. The day can include short interpretive tours around the two-kilometre barrier-free Centennial Loop in Paradise Meadows, guided by naturalists, or longer excursions up to Battleship Lake, 3km one way, where participants can enjoy views of the lake from the fishing dock. The day-use area also has picnic tables and a TrailRider accessible toilet. Or if your “Rider” would like a more challenging 9 km loop, the Battleship Lake/Helen Mackenzie Lake circuit can be done. All of these are free to attend but pre-registration is requested on the SWI website so that volunteers can be arranged.

SWI relies on volunteers to fulfill its mission to inspire awareness, appreciation and stewardship in Strathcona Provincial Park. It needs volunteers to help run the Information Centres, and to become sherpas for the TrailRider and Accessibility Days.

Please consider volunteering your time so that everyone can enjoy Strathcona Provincial Park.

The website, strathconapark.org, has links to all upcoming events and how to apply to volunteer.

Comox Valley Regional District

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