The Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) is reminding outdoor recreationalists to be adventure smart this summer.
That means anyone hitting the trails should remember the 10 essentials, respect the environment, stay within their ability, and respect others with physical distancing.
“Every year it is important for everyone accessing the outdoors, including the backcountry or alpine, to be adventure smart, and this year is especially important given the COVID-19 environment,” said Whistler Mayor Jack Crompton in a release. “We continue to see people hiking and biking on Whistler trails each summer who are not prepared for the experience. Before you head out, ask yourself if you are physically ready and if you have anything you need. When hiking and biking, know your route, pack the essentials, stay away from wildlife, do not flick cigarette butts or matches, stay on the trail and stay within your ability.”
This year, trail rangers will be located on the popular Sproatt and Rainbow alpine trail systems seven days a week. A ranger station will also be built this year in the alpine to help with monitoring, as well as research and education. The RMOW and Province of B.C. recently completed a strategy to minimize conflict with grizzly bears on those trail systems.
Meanwhile, the 10 essentials to remember include:
- Flashlight, spare batteries and bulb
- Fire-making kit such as waterproof matches/lighter and a fire starter/candle
- Signaling device such as whistle or mirror
- Extra food and water (one litre per person)
- Extra clothing including rain, wind, water protection and toque
- Navigation and communication aids
- First aid kit (and know how to use it)
- Emergency shelter such as a tarp
- Pocket knife
- Sun protection like glasses, sunscreen and hat.
For more, head to adventuresmart.ca.
On top of personal safety, the RMOW reminds outdoor enthusiats to pack out all garbage, stay on desginated trails, be aware of current fire danger ratings, prevent the spread of invasive species, protect Whistler's water supply by respecting the watershed, and remember dogs aren't allowed on the Sproatt and Rainbow Alpine Networks. Dog owners are also encouraged to keep their dogs on leash in other areas to prevent wildlife conflict.
"This year, with the COVID-19 pandemic, it is particularly important to play within your ability and not put undue strain on the medical system and emergency services," the release said.