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.

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.

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

Pacific Rim National ParkParks Canada

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

“We have to make a call out to address this now so our people don’t have to feel fearful,” said Tribal Chief Mina Holmes. (Carrier Sekani Tribal Council Facebook photo)
Carrier Sekani Tribal Council seeks Indigenous-led task force in northern B.C. hospitals

Request made in an open letter to federal minister Carolyn Bennett

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

Jennifer Rice BC NDP North Coast Incumbent was re-elected for a third according to the preliminary results on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Jennifer Rice is North Coast MLA for third term

Preliminary election results show NDP Majority government

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

John Horgan has been re-elected the MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca. (File-Black Press)
Horgan trounces challengers to be re-elected in his Vancouver Island riding

MLA has represented constituency of Langford-Juan de Fuca and its predecessors since 2005

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps by 287, another senior home outbreak

Two more deaths recorded, community outbreak in Okanagan

An untitled Emily Carr painting of Finlayson Point was donated to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria by brothers Ian and Andrew Burchett. The painting had been in their family for several decades. (Courtesy of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria)
Never before seen painting by famed B.C. artist Emily Carr gifted to Victoria gallery

Painting among several donated to Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

The B.C. Centre for Disease control is telling people to keep an eye out for the poisonous death cap mushroom, which thrives in fall weather conditions. (Paul Kroeger/BCCDC)
Highly poisonous death cap mushroom discovered in Comox

This marks first discovery on Vancouver Island outside Greater Victoria area

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
Rescued bald eagle that came to life in B.C. man’s car had lead poisoning

Bird is on medication and recovering in rehab centre

Janet Austin, lieutenant governor of B.C., was presented with the first poppy of the Royal Canadian Legion’s 2020 Poppy Campaign on Wednesday. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
PHOTOS: B.C. Lieutenant Governor receives first poppy to kick off 2020 campaign

Janet Austin ‘honour and a privileged’ to receive the poppy

Premier-elect John Horgan and cabinet ministers are sworn in for the first time at Government House in Victoria, July 18, 2017. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)
Pandemic payments have to wait for B.C. vote count, swearing-in

Small businesses advised to apply even if they don’t qualify

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A raccoon paid a visit to a Toronto Tim Hortons on Oct. 22, 2020. (shecallsmedrew/Twitter)
Who are you calling a trash panda? Raccoon takes a shift at Toronto Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons said animal control was called as soon they saw the surprise visitor

The duffel bags were found to contain 84 pounds of cocaine, valued at approximately $1.2 million and 198 pounds of methamphetamine, valued at approximately $960,000. Photo courtesy U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
2 men accused of fleeing border agents near U.S.-B.C. border with $2M in drugs

Cocaine and methamphetamine seized by U.S. law enforcement in remote Idaho area near Canadian border

Most Read