The BC government is introducing a pilot program to test day passes at six popular provincial parks.
The passes are free of charge and will launch on Monday, July 27. The provincial government is testing the program as a means of managing the high frequency of visitors and preventing overcrowding.
“People in B.C. love the outdoors, but some of our most popular parks are experiencing a high number of visitors, resulting in crowded facilities, packed parking lots and safety issues, such as parking along the highway,” said George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy.
- See also:
While the parks have wide-open spaces, trails can become especially crowded in areas such as viewpoints.
The overuse of trails can also have environmental impacts like trail widening, soil erosion, altered hydrology, and damaged vegetation.
The passes will be launched for the following six parks and will be required to access select areas of the trail.
Passes will be launched every day at 6 am on the Discover Camping website. The number of passes that are available each day will vary on the park. Specific parks will require vehicle passes for parking or to access specific trailheads.
The passes are also being allotted into morning, afternoon, and all-day time slots, with morning and afternoon requiring arrival at a certain time of the day.
Backcountry campers who have camping permits do not need a day pass but should carry proof of their camping permit if they are using one of the trails that requires a pass.
The provincial government says that park staff will check passes upon arrival and visitors will be able to download the passes onto their phones or physically print them out.
Keep in mind, anyone who wishes to reserve a day pass will need to set up an account on Discover Camping. Each visitor will need their own pass, but multiple passes can be booked by the same person.
These passes cannot be transferred to another date, time, or location.