Gwaii Haanas confirms: the hotsprings are dry

  • Nov. 1, 2012 8:00 a.m.

Submitted by Gwaii Haanas–A recent reconnaissance has confirmed that water flow to the hot springs at Hotspring Island in Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, National Marine Conservation Area Reserve and Haida Heritage Site on Haida Gwaii has stopped. All major seeps that lead into the four bathing pools are dry and no water is flowing into the pools. The rocks surrounding the pools are also cool to the touch.It is likely that the cessation of water flow is a direct result of the 7.7 magnitude earthquake that hit Haida Gwaii at 8:04 pm on Oct 27. Aftershocks continued for several days following the main quake and included several in the vicinity of Hotspring Island.There are at least 26 hot springs and seeps on the island. These springs produce water at temperatures ranging from 32 to 77 degrees Celsius. The area of the hot springs is located close to a major fault system with a warm reservoir several kilometers deep.The Haida language name of the island Gandll K’in means “hot water”. The site is culturally important to the Haida people who have used its warm waters, its unique ecology and its abundance of seafood for many generations.”The island is a key attraction for our local residents and visitors. Kayakers, tour boats and commercial fisherman all take advantage of the hotsprings to relax while travelling in Gwaii Haanas. Many people locally and beyond will be impacted by this development” explains Ernie Gladstone, Superintendent of Gwaii Haanas.Parks Canada is consulting with geological experts regarding potential long-term implications of the recent earthquake on the area.Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, National Marine Conservation Area Reserve and Haida Heritage Site is cooperatively managed by the Government of Canada and the Haida Nation through the Archipelago Management Board. Created in 1993, the area protects a rich natural and cultural heritage of the Pacific Northwest. Gwaii Haanas is also home to SGang Gwaay World Heritage Site and several national historic sites.

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