Most B.C. provincial parks remain open, but campsites and the camp reservation system are closed along with day-use facilities in most locations. (Black Press files)

B.C. closes camping, day services at provincial parks for COVID-19

Miracle Beach, Wells Gray facilities open for day-use only

Campsites, visitor centres, playgrounds, washrooms and day-use facilities are closed as of March 24 in most B.C. provincial parks as the province continues to increase restrictions for the COVID-19 pandemic.

The closures extend to the end of April at least. The B.C. environment ministry made the decision after seeing an increase in visitors, with many people not complying with Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry’s directives on maintaining physical distance to avoid transmitting the novel coronavirus.

Complete park closures are being considered on a case-by-case basis as health officials look to prevent people from gathering in large numbers, particularly at beaches.

Full closures by B.C. Parks are already in effect at French Beach, Goldstream, Gowlland Tod, Juan de Fuca, Liard River Hot Springs, Maquinna Marine, Joffre Lakes, Murrin, Shannon Falls, Skaha Bluffs, Stawamus Chief and Ancient Forest Provincial Park near Prince George.

RELATED: Port Renfrew, Pacheedaht Nation turn away visitors

RELATED: No gifts, visitors restricted at Island Health facilities

Exceptions are Miracle Beach Provincial Park in the Comox Valley and Wells Gray Provincial Park in the Cariboo Mountains of east-central B.C., where winter-accessible sites remain open.

A wide range of provincial recreation sites and trails are also closed. (See here for a list.)

Forests ministry parks around the province have also closed their camping until further notice.

“All campgrounds, camping opportunities and accommodations will be closed until at least April 30; as we move through this pandemic, this closure date will be reviewed,” says a notice on the B.C. Parks website. “Full refunds will be automatically provided to existing reservation holders during this time and given the volume of cancellations, please allow seven to 10 days for your cancellation and refund. Please do not cancel your own reservation as this will delay our ability to process your refund.”

B.C. Parks’ Discover Camping reservation system is suspended for all new reservations until further notice.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

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

Just Posted

Vanderhoof has access to a water aerodrome again

Municipal council decomissioned the aerodrome last year citing liability concerns

Facebook Group created by Vanderhoof resident aims to battle individual needs during COVID-19

A new Facebook group started by a Vanderhoof resident has recently gained… Continue reading

Here’s what’s open in Vanderhoof

Vanderhoof Chamber of Commerce is requesting the community to support local businesses… Continue reading

B.C. COVID-19 contact restrictions working, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

’Not out of the woods yet’ as next two weeks are critical

Northwest Regional Airport says ridership extremely low amid COVID-19

The airport has enacted enhanced sanitary measures and reduced flights

Trudeau announces 75% wage subsidy for small businesses amid COVID-19

This is up from the previously announced 10 per cent wage subsidy

World update, 9:30 p.m. March 27: Positive news in Korea as U.S. hits 100,000 cases

The United States now has the most coronavirus cases of any country in the world

VIDEO: Penguins roam empty halls of Vancouver Aquarium

COVID-19 has forced the Vancouver Aquarium to close access to guests – leaving room for its residents

Kids get back to learning in B.C., online

Ministry of Education rolls out new tool for school

67 more B.C. COVID-19 cases, two more deaths in Vancouver region

Positive tests found in Surrey, Langley long-term care facilities

‘Now is not the time to bag that peak’: BCSAR manager discourages risky outdoor adventures

Call volumes are not going down, even as the COVID-19 pandemic persists

Food Banks BC already seeing surge in demand due to COVID-19 pandemic

Executive director Laura Lansink said they expect applications will keep increasing

Nanaimo couple caught aboard cruise ship with four dead and COVID-19 present

Four ‘older guests’ have died on Holland America’s Zaandam; cruise line confirms two COVID-19 cases

Frontline workers receiving COVID-19 isolation exemptions prompt concerns

Provincial Health Authority staff exempt from self-isolation upon return from international travel

Most Read