By Heidi Bevington–The popular campsite at Gray Bay on Moresby Island, along with six other recreation sites on the islands, will have regular maintenance paid for by the province for the first time in four years.
The sites have been maintained, if at all, by community groups, since 2002 when the province cut the Ministry of Forests recreation budget.
However, this year, the province has created 17 new recreation officer positions in the newly formed Ministry of Tourism, Sport and the Arts. The islands will be managed out of the Terrace office by Carl Johansen.
Mr. Johansen still doesn’t know how much money he will have, but by April he expects to have a budget. The first priority will be to repair and maintain the sites. If there’s any money left over, he said he plans to rebuild deteriorating infrastructure. The islands climate is hard on structures like outhouses and picnic tables he said, and he will be looking for money to replace as much infrastructure as possible.
The seven camp sites-Gray Bay, Kagan Bay, Rennell Sound, Cone Head, Sheldon’s Bay, Mosquito Lake and Moresby Camp-will open the May long weekend and remain open until September.
Mr. Johansen also hopes to repair and maintain some popular islands trails like Bonanza Beach if he can, and he plans to collaborate with community groups that have been maintaining trails like Sleeping Beauty and Onward Point.
Anyone who wants more information about plans for the recreation sites and trails can call Mr. Johansen at 250-638-5100.
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