Page 4 of 13
Reading the Garibaldi Park Management Plan of 1990 I notice the following priorities;
• The main conservation roles of Garibaldi Park are to represent the Rugged Pacific Ranges Regional Landscape and to preserve the landscape's special, representative features.
• The recreation role is to provide the highest quality destination mountain wilderness opportunities in southwestern British Columbia, and to provide a variety of alpine recreation experiences to serve the needs of regional recreation.
Unlike the hackneyed park ranger motto of take pictures and leave footprints, the construction of huts proposed for Spearhead will be a rather large intrusive departure from "preserving the landscape's special, representative features."Should the Spearhead huts come to fruition the landscape will never be the same. Those who prefer the wilderness camping aspect of this area will be denied.
The logic that huts are needed to control the trash and excrement left by existing user groups goes against all the values of minimal impact use which dictates "pack it in — pack it out" policy. They would likely become locations for wildlife habituation to occur. One would hope BC Parks severely restricts additional high impact construction projects in the Alpine regions of our Crown assets.
Contrary to what Mr. Baldwin states there is no reference to any prohibition of mechanized activity in Garibaldi Park Master Plan.
Page 21 section 6.2.4 and 5 of the plan references that snowmobiling be encouraged outside of the park, and that non-mechanized guiding will be encouraged. Heli-hiking and hunting are also deemed as not acceptable. Prohibition is not mentioned. Phasing out of heli-skiing is only mentioned in the context of public comments received. Not to be confused with existing park policy.
This does bring up an interesting contradiction. That being, is the hut proposal mechanized, or not? Not sure how construction, maintenance, servicing, trash, effluent and rescue management can occur at chosen locations without the extensive use of aircraft. What will backcountry users think about barrels of crap buzzing overhead? Perhaps pack animals will gain permission to traverse the Park.
While John's books on backcountry travel routes are a fantastic resource for bringing the multitudes out to ski tour and snowmobile B.C.'s wilderness regions, the suggestion from an esteemed Vancouver-based writer that Whistler is not world class could be a bit offensive.
I would also urge readers to submit their comments to BC Parks on the draft amendments to Garibaldi Park Master Plan. But before doing so READ both the existing plan and proposed amendments. Rethink the urbanization of our alpine with more accommodation construction.
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