Camping In Phase 3, British Columbia: What You Need To Know
The trees didn’t notice we were gone but I sure missed them. For a few shorts months our plans were stopped for our own sake.
Now we’re being let out for good behaviour and I couldn’t be happier. As much as we wear masks and sanitize everything while pottering about town, things are different in the forest.
Camping looks slightly different, but not as much as I thought. Here are a few things that have changed since we’ve been indoors, and some that haven’t but maybe should.
- To deal with the raised demand of local campsites due to international travel being cancelled, you can only book 2 months in advance.
- Signs have been placed at the entrances, bathrooms, and on any gathering spots to keep your distance. 2 meters apart, please.
- New reminders to sanitize before and after using the public bathrooms and out-houses, though almost none provided, so you’ll need to bring your own. The larger washroom facilities usually have regularly replenished soap, but it might be a good idea to bring your own in a little bottle.
- Most camp visitors seem to be fully adjusted and happy to keep their distance when passing on walking paths and hiking trails. We pass with a little thank you as their breath. Canadian and polite.
- The cleaning timetable has been increased and the bathrooms and showering facilities were well maintained. Of course, if they’re busy then it can still get a little messy.
- While there are signs up recommending a safe distance, there were a few groups who took a few liberties, but for the most part, queues were orderly.
While all campsites are different, you can expect to need your own hand sanitizer. Nobody wears masks as the consensus is that since we’re outside, you can’t catch anything. While that’s not necessarily true, there is plenty of space to avoid other people.
“To ensure that campers can continue to meet social distancing guidelines and overall numbers in the campground are manageable, the maximum number of individuals permitted on these campsites is 16. This includes people of all ages, at all times, including registered guests and daytime visitors as well. These dedicated and often large camping areas with their own facilities and amenities allow extended families to spread out and enjoy the added space while still camping together. As such, the standard fee for group camping applies. A few other group campsites have been repurposed as ‘single-party’ campsites. The maximum number permitted on these campsites is no more than 8 people each. These new opportunities – each with their own picnic table and fire ring – will be available in-park, on a first-come, first served basis and the standard per party front-country camping fee applies.” – BC Parks
If you’re traveling with kids, you may have to keep reminding them to keep their distance and avoid commonly-touched surfaces.
Keep an eye on http://bcparks.ca/covid-19/ for regularly updated information, and happy camping! Oh, and as always, leave your Bluetooth speaker at home, nobody wants to hear ‘Camping Playlist 2020 Mix’.