If you ski from the top of Elk Pass under the powerline into BC(the route to Elk Lakes cabin), you’ll see the disturbing signs of the depraved killers proudly displayed within the first 100 metres.
On weekends, there’s a good chance you’ll see or hear these miscreants with their expensive snowmobiles and weapons looking to kill trophy wolves.
A few metres from the Elk Pass picnic table, the cruelty of human beings is being manifested in the barbaric practice of trapping not just wolves, but any unsuspecting animal, perhaps a cougar, lynx, bobcat, fox, coyote, or even an eagle or raven.
When I took the photo a few weeks ago, there were snowmobile tracks everywhere on the BC side.
The BC trappers set their instruments of torture close to the border because they know the wolves do not respect any boundaries, and are attracted by the smelly bait.
The trapped wolf endures a painful and panic-filled wait until they either die from exhaustion, blood loss, dehydration, hypothermia, or are clubbed, choked or stomped to death by the trapper (so as not to damage the pelt).
Alternatively, it’s been well-documented that animals have chewed their foot off to escape a trap.
The Peter Lougheed Provincial Park wolves are protected from hunting and trapping while in the park, but if they step one foot over the provincial boundary, it’s open season on the BC side.
In Alberta, we have no reason to be indignant because the same thing happens every day in our province on the outskirts of Banff National Park, and in all unprotected areas of the province. I will give Alberta credit for protecting the area known as Spray Valley Provincial Park in 2003 which we pass through on our way to PLPP. It’s one less place where wolves can be killed. The alpha female of the Peter Lougheed pack was shot in that area by an elk hunter in 2000 before it was protected.
“Traditions” such as trapping belong on the ash heap, right next to slavery, dog fighting, and other activities that were once considered an acceptable part of people’s heritage.
How would you describe the look on Josh Bransford’s face? What personality disorder would it take for a man to do this, and take pleasure in it? You can read more about this incident Idaho wolf trapper. The most disturbing element of this whole story is that everything he did is legal.
Despite being banned by many countries around the world, as well as Florida, Rhode Island, New Jersey and Arizona, the leg-hold trap is still legal in every province and territory in Canada (only leg-holds with ‘teeth’ have been prohibited).