Exciting Times For Outdoorsy Types
On Wednesday, January 14, Kim Deane wore his “Board Chair of the Friends of the Rossland Range Society” (FORRS) hat to sign an agreement, along with Justin Dexter representing “Recreation Sites and Trails BC.”
The agreement, which will soon be available for public viewing on the Rossland Range Recreation Site page of the FORRS website, sets out how FORRS will manage the Rec Site on behalf of its users — everyone who goes there to ski, snowshoe, bike, hike, socialize, exercise, watch birds and bears or look at trees and flowers, admire the tracks of snowshoe hares, lynx, coyotes and other recreationists, get above the fog blanketing Rossland, rest and warm up in the variety of day-use shelters dotted about the landscape, and so on.
FORRS members and board of directors had thought of the Recreation Site option (under Part 5, Division 3 of the Forest and Range Practices Act) as a possible means of providing some official status and protection for free public recreation in the Rossland Range, but until Justin Dexter came to the Nelson office that idea went nowhere. Dexter helped the Rec Site happen, and has provided advice, encouragement and support. All of this has kept our day-use shelters from becoming casualties of the Compliance branch, who were developing an interest in removing them.
Dexter had exciting news for the outdoor recreation community in this area: with the agreement finalized and signed, FORRS can access funding from Recreation Sites and Trails BC to improve the Rec Site — Dexter mentioned $20,000. People will now be busy figuring out how to stretch that money as far as possible, to do the most useful things in the Rec Site. Many “hut people” are already busy planning how to bring “their” day-use shelters — the ones they have undertaken to champion, to improve and maintain for public use — up to the standards required by the Provincial government.
We will even get some outhouses that people won’t be afraid to use. As Buddy Wasisname sings in one of that group’s songs, “The government likes to keep all crap contained … “