6 Friends Have Been Fined Thousands Of Dollars For Illegally Camping In BC

That's an expensive trip!

6 Friends Have Been Fined Thousands Of Dollars For Illegally Camping In BC
Staff Writer

Six friends have been fined thousands of dollars for illegally camping in B.C.

The six men passed through the Pacific Rim National Park's closed-off areas on their paddleboards illegally between May 30 and June 1 last year, according to Parks Canada.

Parts of the national park and the West Coast Trail unit were closed off to visitors and no permits were issued through 2020 to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The National Park Reserve had parts closed off to protect the First Nations communities. In a normal season, prior to COVID-19, over 10,000 people would hike through these First Nations communities.

Only a select few places on the Pacific Rim National Park re-opened in 2020 to 2021, which was deemed safe for visitors to adventure through.

The group decided to take a trip there and "incorrectly assumed" camping on the beach below high tide was legal. However, it was not.

Parks Canada said in a statement to Narcity: "Knowing that the national park reserve was closed to visitors and that permits were not being issued for the West Coast Trail unit, a group of six men illegally accessed the West Coast of Vancouver Island in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve on paddleboards.

"The group incorrectly assumed that camping on a beach below the high tide level was legal. However, the national park reserve extends out into the Strait of Juan de Fuca to the 20-metre isobath, that is, the line where the water is approximately 60 feet in depth."

According to the Times Colonist, in a court hearing on February 11, the men pleaded guilty to illegally entering and camping in the park without a permit.

Five of the men were fined $1,750 each and one repeat offender was fined $3,500.

If you are planning on visiting the Pacific Rim National Park, you can visit the Parks website to know which areas are open to the public.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

Ashley Harris
Staff Writer
Ashley Harris was a Staff Writer for Narcity Canada's Western Desk focused on restaurants in Vancouver, and is based in Vancouver, British Columbia.