Areas along the West Coast Trail, Broken Island Groups and Long Beach Unit will remain closed to public for overnight camping in 2020. (Photo: Pacific Rim National Park Reserve/Facebook)

Areas along the West Coast Trail, Broken Island Groups and Long Beach Unit will remain closed to public for overnight camping in 2020. (Photo: Pacific Rim National Park Reserve/Facebook)

West Coast Trail to remain closed to overnight camping for rest of the year

Broken Islands and Long Beach Unit of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve also off limits

Several overnight backcountry camping areas in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve will remain closed for the rest of 2020, including the West Coast Trail, the Broken Group Islands, and the Long Beach unit.

Parks Canada announced the decision to close these areas was done in consultation with local First Nations in response to concerns voiced by these communities about ongoing risks of COVID-19.

Overnight experiences on the West Coast Trail, including Keeha Beach, Tapaltos, all other locations in the Cape Beale region, and the Nitinaht Triangle are suspended for 2020.

RELATED: Pacific Rim National Park Reserve announces limited camping opportunities

One-way trails in the Long Beach unit, including Schooner Cove, Combers Beach, Nuu-chah-nulth, South Beach, Willowbrea and Halfmoon Bay will be closed.

The visitor centres, visitor services, interpretive programs and all group activities and special events throughout the national park reserve will not be operational.

Limited day use opportunities are still available in some backcountry areas of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. However, motorized and non-motorized vessels, including kayaks, are not permitted to land anywhere within the West Coast Trail Unit.

All reservations for the Broken Group Islands and West Coast Trail will be automatically cancelled with all fees refunded.

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve falls within the traditional territories of nine Nuu-chah-nulth Nations. First Nations communities are among the most vulnerable to COVID-19 and visitors to backcountry areas in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve pass through Indigenous communities, Indian Reserve lands and Treaty Settlement lands.

Indigenous people are also present on these lands for cultural, ceremonial, and harvesting purposes. Visitors often interact with Beachkeepers in the Broken Group and Guardians on the West Coast Trail, who maintain infrastructure and provide guidance and cultural information to visitors.

Although B.C. has moved into phase 3 of its reopening, First Nations indicated that they were not ready to reopen and expose their territories to the risk of COVID-19.

Judith Sayers, president of the Nuu-chah-nulth Nations, along with the Heiltsuk and Tsilhqot’in First Nations had said on June 23, that travel in their respective territories will be restricted until safety concerns are met.

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

READ MORE : B.C. reopening travel not sitting well with several First Nations

Pacific Rim National ParkParks Canada

Just Posted

AW Neill Elementary School in Port Alberni. (NEWS FILE PHOTO)
SD70 chooses new name for AW Neill School in Port Alberni

New name honours Nuu-chah-nulth Peoples’ connection to region

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

Ron MacDonald fields questions at a news conference in Halifax on Sept. 27, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Finding ‘comfortable’ indigenous monitor tough task in Tofino-area shooting death

Julian Jones case hampered by difficulty finding a civilian comfortable with privacy protocols

Port Alberni RCMP officer in command Insp. Eric Rochette presents longtime community policing volunteer Louie Aumair with a OIC appreciation certificate. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Port Alberni RCMP honour longtime volunteer

First responders receive support from broader community

The Dock+ is located on Harbour Road in Port Alberni. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
PROGRESS 2021: Port Alberni’s food hub still growing a year later

The Dock hopes to open a retail store on Alberni’s busy waterfront

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

Most Read