Guide to Hiking and Traveling During Phase 3
Summer is off to an uncertain start and if you’re feeling cooped up, stir crazy, or suffering from a case of FOMO, you’re not alone. Walks on trails and local wandering can be fun but summer is all about exploring all the beauty BC has to offer away from your neighbourhood. Still, there’s good news: BC has recently announced the start of phase 3 in the 4 part extensive restart plan.
During phase 3, BC is allowing the public to slowly take part in “safe, smart, and respectful travel within BC”. This means hotels, motels, resorts, spas, and overnight camping are reopening to serve the public with respect to safety guidelines.
During these bizarre times, hikers and nonessential travellers need to do their part in adapting to the new normal. Here are some of the ways you can travel and enjoy summer while staying safe.
Guide to Traveling During Phase 3
It is important to remind ourselves that when traveling, we are not leaving COVID-19 behind.
# 1 Bring your own clean trip kit
A clean trip kit includes hand sanitizer, gloves, and toilet paper. It is always a good idea to disinfect frequently touched surfaces with the kit.
#2 Prior to your trip, carefully plan ahead
Some towns, communities, and regions are welcoming B.C. visitors with safety measures in place, but not all. Others might be reluctant to welcome outside visitors at this time. Look for closures or changes in the sites or trails you plan to visit. For example, some popular provincial parks have set up a day-use pass pilot to reduce overcrowding issues. More information here
# 3 Practice proper physical distancing and wash your hands often
It is important to note that guidelines and extra safety “precautions for sectors in Phase 2 are still in place”. Respect physical distancing of at least two meters, wash your hands often and choose low-risk activities in open spaces.
Bonus tip for campers: Travel in small close-knit groups
Campgrounds may be including additional spacing between campsites and limit the number of guests allowed on campgrounds. Travel in smaller groups and keep your social circle small.
# 4 Bring your own supply
When travelling, pack all essential items such as groceries, masks, toilet paper, and sanitizers. This way, it will relieve communities who may be experiencing supply issues and lessen your stops within their communities. Moreover, if you are looking to go on a hike with rough terrain make sure to be equipped with proper gear.
# 5 If you are sick, felt any cold or flu symptoms, or been in contact with someone who has, stay home
Do your part and stay home, keep the communities safe.
While it can be exciting to see phase 3 come into play for the summer, don’t let your guard down just yet. In order to continue having fun this summer and into the fall, we must all do our part by following proper protocol.
Check out the government website for further information about the BC restart plan and safety measures.
UPDATE: B.C. officials have implemented a day-use pass system to help reduce overcrowding at six popular provincial parks.
1. Mount Robson Park
Berg Lake Trail
2. Stawamus Chief Park
Chief Peaks Trail
3. Cypress Park
Upper mountain trails, including the Howe Sound Crest Trail, Hollyburn Mountain Trails and the Black Mountain Plateau trails
4. Mount Seymour Park
Upper mountain trails including the Seymour Main Trail, Dog Mountain Trail and Mystery Lake Trail
5. Garibaldi Park
Trailheads at Diamond Head, Rubble Creek and Cheakamus
6. Golden Ears Park
All trails and day-use areas
Looking for new trails around Lower Mainland to explore this summer?
Check out our blog on 5 Summer Hiking Destinations for Phase 3.