No worries, it’s now online for your reading convenience. Check it out here and enjoy!
One of our newest contributors, Graeme Pole just released a new Canadian Rockies guide.
This 20th Anniversary Edition (184 pages, softcover, $21.95) includes 151 outings in Banff, Jasper, Yoho, Kootenay, Mt. Robson, Waterton Lakes, and Akamina-Kishinena Parks, as well as Kananaskis Country and Kootenay Plains Recreation Area!! Read More
That’s no surprise when one knows Darren has been captivated by the art of photography for decades, and his passion for nature and outdoors lead him to have his shots featured in many tourism-based marketing materials in B.C. and Alberta. Read More
Today, Sunday April 22, 2012 is Earth Day. That means we’re all concerned about our Earth future. However it doesn’t mean we as individuals, shouldn’t be concerned about it every day of our life, doesn’t it? Actually it’s only if we start on an individual level, that we’ll be able (as a global community) to have an impact on an individual basis as well as globally.
So and on this very topic, we fully support this “Take it up for Earth Day” initiative as it (hopefully) could have a sustainable impact not only on our planet but on our daily lives too by simply starting to take up a new habit!
Some of you following Bob on Twitter already know who the winners are, however here is the official winners’ announcement:
Category “Landscapes & Sunsets”
The “Landscapes & Sunsets” category winner will receive $100 as a gas card + an annual Family Pass to Canada’s National Parks & Historic Sites for a value of $136.
What’s your idea of a mountain park experience? Do you like to just sit, relax, and drink in the scenery? Or do you prefer something more active – perhaps skiing, hiking, or boating? Whatever it is, we’d love to see it! And we’d really like to see you, your family, and your friends enjoying your experience.
Get a look at the submissions we received!!
Videos submissions section
“Lynx at Marmot Basin, Jasper National Park, Alberta, January 2012.”
Submitted by Carmen Hoelting.
“Snowshoeing winter wonderland, Peter Lougheed Provincial Park, Kananaskis Country, Alberta.”
Submitted by Rosemarie Wrobel.
“Black Bears fight, Blue River, British Columbia, September 2011.”
Submitted by Carmen Hoelting.
“Marmots in Mount Robson Provincial Park, British Columbia, August 2010.”
Submitted by Iain Reid.
Submissions to our contest are now over…Thank you and good luck all!
Upload a picture and small description and you could win our Grand Prize – a brand new HD Video Camera Outfit (including accessories) with a retail value of $1,500 generously donated by The Camera Store, Calgary.
Our Runner Up Prize is a portable outdoor campfire & accessories, valued at $330 generously donated by Campfire-in-a-Can, Kelowna.
Four Category Winners will also be awarded a prize package that will consist of a $100 Gas Card and a Parks Canada Family Discovery Pass. The Parks Pass is valued at $136.40. It allows entry for up to seven people arriving together at a national park, national marine conservation area, or national historic site. Other prizes will be given away in random draws.
Contest open to those who have reached the age of majority. Employees of CMI Publishing and the contest sponsors are not eligible. There is no limit on the number of entries that any one contestant can submit. No purchase necessary. Contest runs from April 15, 2011 to February 29, 2012.
Are limited to photos taken within the mountain parks of Alberta, British Columbia, and Montana. Digital images should be saved as JPGs, in CMYK mode at 300 DPI. All images should have minimum dimensions of 4” by 6”. All videos must be no more than 2 minutes in length. All entries must include the name and contact information of the photographer, a caption for the photo, date taken, specifics about where the image was taken, and the category selected from the following list:
Here’s how to enter:
Photo submissions will be reviewed and selected on technical quality, creativity, composition, and overall impact. The winners hereby agree to have their names, photos, and entries published in the 2012 edition of Experience The Mountain Parks, and online at. Judging of the entries will be conducted by a panel of professional photographers. All decisions by the judging panel will be final.
Photographic submissions remain the property of the photographer. The sponsors reserve full usage rights of all entries for a period of three years, without cost, for use in tourism brochures, and any other corporate promotional materials. CMI Publishing reserves the right to showcase all winning and honourable mention photography indefinitely within Experience the Mountain Parks, on the contest website and within contest promotional material. Sponsor rights shall not include the sale of submitted photographs to other parties or other commercial use. Photo credits will be provided where possible at the discretion of the sponsors.
Submissions to our grand 2011/2012 Photos/Videos Contest were accepted up to February 29, 2012, midnight MT. Read More
Tourism Vancouver‘s new destination film uses multiple platforms to send its message — and it’s unlike any promotional piece of its kind. Incorporating a local band and original song, “It’s You… Vancouver” is the world’s first professionally produced destination film in music video format.
The song is performed by Watasun, a Vancouver-based duo whose music fuses urban beats with traditional folk sounds. One-time buskers on Vancouver’s Granville Street, singer/songwriter Adam Bailie and percussionist Reid Hendry now record, produce and sell their own albums, taking inspiration from the city’s diversity, vibrancy and unity.
Throughout the three-minute video, the duo perform their catchy tune while making appearances in, near or atop of iconic Vancouver attractions, including the Vancouver Convention Centre roof, an Aquabus ferry and snow-covered Grouse Mountain.
A new page with a fully interactive map featuring West Bragg Creek Provincial Park, in Alberta, has been added to Experience The Mountain Parks website.
This is one of the most unique areas you will ever visit! Wells Gray Provincial Park is over 5000 km2, hosts 56 species of mammals, 219 species of bird and 700 species of flowering plants!
Add this to the fascinating volcanic history of the area, and the result is a bid for the prestigious UNESCO World Heritage Status!
Not only that, but Wells Gray is home to Canada’s most extensive alpine flower meadows, several of BC’s most beautiful waterfalls, including the world famous Helmcken Falls, and the world’s largest non-motorized lakes — Murtle Lake.
All-in-all, Wells Gray is the best combination of wilderness and outdoor activities you will find on your holiday.
Wells Gray and Clearwater is located on Highway #5, south of Jasper and north of Kamloops.
Watch the mouth watering videos we’re presenting you here, let’s call it your next experience!
Want to know more: www.WellsGray.ca
The human history of Wells Gray Country is often seen as two tales. The first being the tale of the First Nations who lived here for thousands of years. The other being the European settlers who arrived within the past century. The combination of these two influences has shaped much of what is seen here today.
First Nations, Ancient Ways
Wells Gray Country was, for some 10,000 years, home primarily to the Simpcw First Nations of the Secwepemc (or Shuswap) Nation. Their semi-nomadic ways of hunting, fishing and gathering had evolved to match the annual rhythms of nature by moving with the seasons and the timing of caribou and salmon migration.
Like so many ancient cultures, their values and lifestyle recognised their dependency on their natural surroundings, and taught a deep respect for their environment and the ways in which it provided for their people.
Winter settlements were based on the keekwilli, a round pit-house with an earth-covered roof. This made a warm, secure home through the cold weather. Signs of these may be found throughout the area, most particularly in the North Thompson River Provincial Park. During the hot summers, woven reed-mats were used to build cool and airy lodges. Over 50 archaeological sites have been found in the area, including pictographs on the shores of Mahood Lake.
The first European surveyors, trappers, and prospectors arrived in the early 1800s. Many of these were positive meetings, others much less so. The newcomers introduced foreign diseases, and many First Nation people died of smallpox, measles and other illnesses. They also traded goods which were later to be seen as unwelcome, such as firearms and whiskey.
One of the most damaging influences was the way in which foreign values and standards were imposed on an ancient, enduring and entirely sustainable First Nation lifestyle.
Despite these pressures, the Secwepemc people preserve a vibrant and thriving culture, and remain a unique and important presence in the North Thompson.
Overlanders & Pioneers
The first Europeans to arrive in the area were fur-trappers in the early 19th century. They traveled up the North Thompson River from the outpost at Kamloops, interacting with the native Secwepemc as they travelled.
These first European explorers noted the point where a river with very clear water flowed into the sediment-laden North Thompson as Fourche de l’Eau Claire. This tributary subsequently became known as the Clearwater River.
Later, in the mid-1800s, large numbers of prospectors arrived, lured by the promise of riches from the Cariboo Gold-Rush. In 1862 a group known as ‘The Overlanders’ passed through the area on their way to the Cariboo, having journeyed from Ontario by way of Winnipeg and Edmonton. At Tete Jaune Cache, some of the party continued down the Fraser River. The remainder (including pregnant women and young children) made the extraordinarily arduous journey by wooden raft down the wild North Thompson River to “Fort Kamloops”.
The first European settlement was established in the early 1900s, and known initially as Raft River. Birch Island was a busy centre for some time due to the location being the northern most navigable limit for steamers used for the construction of the Canadian Northern Railway. This was an age of trappers, prospectors and homesteaders, signs may still be seen in the form of small log cabins falling slowly into ruin. However, several farms established in this era are still thriving today. An example is the Aveley Ranch in Vavenby, now one of the largest sheep-farms in Canada.
In time, the villages of Clearwater, Vavenby, and Birch Island became well-established, based mainly on income from logging and lumber. In recent years, a more diverse economy has evolved, with tourism now playing an important role.
Some of the features were formed underneath icecaps during the last ice age, giving them unique geological properties. The incredible amounts of melt-water given off by the receding glaciers at the end of the last ice-age cut deep valleys in the lava beds and formed stunning waterfalls throughout the area. There is a movement afoot to recognize the incredible geology and volcanic landscape of the area as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Wells Gray-Clearwater volcanic field began forming approximately 3,500,000 years ago and has grown steadily since then. The tectonic causes of volcanism that have produced the Wells Gray-Clearwater volcanic field is not yet clear, and are therefore a matter of ongoing research.
Most of the Wells Gray-Clearwater volcanic field is encompassed within Wells Gray Provincial Park. This 540,000 ha (1,334,369 acre) park was established in 1939 because of the volcanic field’s beauty. A single road enters the park, but from it, a number of the field’s volcanic features can be viewed. Short hikes lead to several volcanic features, however there are some areas accessible only by aircraft.