Pass It On.
Hello & Welcome
As the official charitable partner of BC Parks, the BC Parks Foundation is leading an expedition to create the best park system in the world. We do this by working with you to protect, enhance and sustain our parks, while inspiring and connecting people to them.
The wild, incredible nature of our backyard is core to being British Columbian. Your support is keeping B.C. beautiful for future generations.
How would you like to make a difference?
April 7, 2020
For many of us, getting outside and being surrounded by nature is a daily need, and luckily, virtual hikes exist for the days when doing so just isn't possible.
While they are not a new idea, virtual hikes have been...
March 30, 2020
Photo: Destination BC/Andrew Strain
Life is a bit weird right now. Here at the BC Parks Foundation, our job is usually to connect you with parks. Our job is to get...
March 28, 2020
If you’re looking for some kid-friendly activities to keep the little ones entertained during your At Home Picnic, we have some ideas for you! From classic games to indoor hacks of classic picnic games, you can use these suggestions...
BC Parks Champions
In many ways parks have made me who I am. As an Ontario boy, I thought of Algonquin Park as a kind of Nirvana. It denoted wilderness and nature in a pure form. Wolves roamed there. When I landed a job, ages 17-19, doing “chores” at the research station, I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. It also became apparent that the people who worked in parks, the rangers and naturalists, were an important part of the scene. They appreciate and protect nature for others to enjoy. These people became my role models.
BC parks are among the most spectacular in the world because this province is blessed with a great variety of natural habitats from mountains to marine. We need to use them or lose them but at the same time we must not love them to death with too many amenities. It will take vigilance and budgets to guarantee that our parks will be as beneficial to future generations as they are to us.
My life took a turn at 15 when I spent a summer in Manning Park, working as a member of the Youth Crew, building trails, fighting fires, maintaining the campgrounds. Splitting firewood in the sun, with room and board and three dollars a day the only financial reward, taught me that work is not about money; it's about pride, strength, perseverance and grit, values that would forge the foundation of my professional life. Altogether, I worked eight seasons for BC Parks, culminating in a much coveted position as the first park ranger in the Spatsizi Plateau, British Columbia's largest wilderness park. My job description was deliciously vague; public relations and wilderness assessment. In two four month seasons my partner and I encountered not a dozen visitors, leaving us free to wander, as we mapped the trails, surveyed the wildlife, ran the rivers, and established routes up all the major peaks. This prolonged apprenticeship with the Parks, all that I learned in E.C. Manning and Naikoon, Mount Assiniboine, Atlin Mountain, Mount Edziza, and Spatsizi Plateau, left me with both a deep appreciation of nature, and a profound sense of belonging, a spirit of place that is the essence of Canadian patriotism. In good measure, I owe my life and career to BC Parks. Surely the opportunities that I had in my youth, the chance to unburden an adolescent mind and reward the body with hard physical work, to experience for the first time the true miracle of nature, to seek the promise of transformation, even transcendence, as found only in the wild heart of the world, ought to be part of the birthright of every new generation of British Columbians.
My family did not have very many luxuries. Growing up as a child in East Vancouver, our weekend family time was exploring the numerous parks to the north and east of Vancouver. Free access to parks was essential for my parents to entertain and educate my sister and me. I love our parks to this day.
Dr. Sally Otto
From Ruckle Provincial Park in the Garry oak ecosystem to the glacier-fed lakes of Mount Assiniboine, the parks of British Columbia are truly majestic. Camping in these parks allows families, like mine, to experience nature directly and to pass along to our children a love of wildlife. The parks are also a critical refuge for the most endangered animals and plants. BC is home to the most species diversity of any province in Canada but also home to the most species at risk. Without well managed parks, we are likely to lose dozens, if not hundreds, of the animal and plant species that make BC so special.
I was born in Port Alberni and grew up on Vancouver Island. That was the era when family vacations meant packing the camping gear into the trunk of the Buick and heading off down one BC's brand new highways. It was pure exploration and discovery - the Cariboo, the Slocan Valley, the Big Bend highway, the Chilcotin - exploring the wonders of the province by day, and pulling in for the night at a BC Parks campground. Those experiences kindled my love of exploration and new vistas, which took me around the world as a scientist (biology PhD) then later as a technology entrepreneur. I founded the BC-based Tula Foundation in 2002 and set up Tula’s Hakai Institute in 2010. Hakai develops the tools, systems, people and insights we need to understand our coastal ecosystems in the context of climate change, and to deal with the consequences that are coming. We operate field stations at remote locations on the BC coast. We have our own scientific staff plus a large network that includes university researchers, government scientists and First Nations. For the past eight years we have enjoyed a very close and productive partnership with BC Parks via our Calvert Island field station, which is located in the heart of the Great Bear Rainforest.
BC's parks are magnificent places where we can leave the noise and hurry of life behind and be renewed. They are where we experience what is truly beautiful and where we can cultivate wellbeing, resilience and vitality.”
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