This pandemic is bringing out the worst in a few people who are willing to throw around insults when they don’t have a clue. Decisions are made with the information that’s available at the time. It’s disengenuous to criticize anyone for breaking rules which are actually not in effect. I received the following email from Chuck:
“It is unfortunate that there is mixed information out there.
I was comfortable to do my trip to Boom Lake based on this article in the Crag & Canyon dated March 25:
Note the paragraph that reads:
Visitor facilities in all Parks Canada places across the country are now temporarily closed until further notice, visitors may access front country, backcountry and accessible green spaces, but are responsible for their own safety.
As I said, the washroom was being cleaned when we arrived (we even used it when the cleaner left) the parking lot was plowed and there was no sign indicating any closure or restricted activities at the trailhead.
My reporting has always been based on updating our ski community on what current opportunities are available.”
It would be appropriate for the folks who criticized and insulted Chuck to apologize to him for their impulsive outbursts( and not the weasel-worded non-apologies “I’m sorry if I offended anyone…”).
Great news! I had tossed Chickadee Valley out with the bath water. Guilty.
Back on the list. Thank you.
I read about a family in Italy being allowed to walk 100 metres from their home and that’s it. We should count our blessings.
The Crag & Canyon article with the suggestion that visitors “may access front country, backcountry and accessible green spaces, but are responsible for their own safety” sounds enticing, but really requires clarification directly from Parks Canada. Otherwise we skiers are left in the grey zone as what we’re still allowed to do.
People have a tendency to express their restricted sense of agency in different ways.
Now, more than ever, the benefits of exercise are incredibly important, including mental health.
Thankfully, this has not gone unrecognized by some policymakers. In the UK, where enforcement of social distancing is now being strictly enforced by the police. The recognition of the importance of exercise and ‘getting out’ is reflected in the policy that allows people to go out for exercise once a day, even in dense urban areas.
It seems that the motivation for the subsequent policy closing provincial and national parks is not to prevent solitary x-country skiers, but instead to get ahead of the peak season that sees thousands of people hanging out in the recreation areas near large parking lots and the risks that that traffic creates for communities such Canmore . It’s understandable, but unfortunate that this has had the side effect of removing a very low risk option for personal exercise and introspection.
Whether we choose to come out the other side of this as a society of responsible individuals who look out for one another a little more, or a society of tin pot tyrants, is up to us.
So, Chuck, ignore the detractors. You were doing nothing wrong and risking the health of nobody.
Steve, that’s good insight regarding “getting ahead of the peak season.” I hadn’t thought of that. Cross country skiers were the collateral damage. I don’t think the authorities have done a very good job of explaining the reasoning behind many of the decisions, and it’s resulted in everyone speculating.
Brad’s admittance was still appreciated, nonetheless.
Chuck thanks for the inspirational trips reports and photos all season. You do a great job of getting off the beaten path to show us places further into the backcountry. Good to see you are still getting out as this activity doesn’t pose a risk to anyone.