‘Know before you go’ into the outdoors this May long weekend

Maria Vinca / May 16, 2019

Campgrounds around BC are filling up fast for May long weekend
(Joffre Lake / Pixabay)

As May long weekend approaches, more people are heading out into the outdoors.

Reservations are filling up, although many provincial parks continue to offer first come first serve sites.

There are a few things people should be aware of before going camping to their favourite provincial park this weekend.

According to a recent report  from the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, there will be an increase of park rangers and conservation officers throughout the campgrounds to ensure public safety.

Campfire safety is key!

Due to recent wildfires throughout BC, stricter rules around campfires will be enforced.

  • Fires must be kept to 0.5 metres in height and diameter.
  • Campers must have a one-metre fireguard around any fire for safety precautions.
  • Campfires cannot be left unattended, and campers must have a shovel handy or eight litres of water is advised.

Throughout the back country, campers are asked to check BC Parks staff before visiting because fires aren’t permitted everywhere.

Anyone caught with a fire larger than 0.5 metres in height and diameter could be fined $345.

These are some campfire safety tips
(Luke Mcgrath / BCIT Journalism)

Campfire bans are enforced to prevent more wildfires from happening
(BC Wildfire Service / Twitter)

Stricter smoking bans also in place

According to the Ministry,  smoking and vaping of tobacco, cannabis or other substances is only permitted  in designated front-country or group campsites by registered campers and their guests.

 “This policy is designed to allow people and families to enjoy their stay in a park or campground by minimizing the exposure of second-hand smoke.” – The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy

The Ministry says, this policy is in place to reduce the risk of wildfires and protects wildlife and the environment from hazardous effects of cigarette butts and other litter associated with smoking.

But for those who just want to go explore the back country in our province, local paramedic and former search and rescue veteran Luciano Nisi says there are some key necessities before heading into the wilderness.

  • Water
  • Food
  • Extra Clothing 

For more tips on being safe in the wilderness, listen to Caden Fanshaw’s full interivew with Luciano Nisi 

Luciano Nisi talks about important safety tips for going out into the wilderness
(Luciano Nisi / Twitter)