Eighteen of the Yukon’s campgrounds opened on April 30 – the earliest they have opened. With the first weekend in the books, Scott Cameron, parks information officer said the opening weekend was “definitely a success”.
The campgrounds opened earlier this year as part of the Yukon government’s 10-year parks strategy plan that was announced on Sept. 24.
For the opening weekend, Cameron said the parks weren’t as full as they could be.
“The campgrounds were relatively quiet,” said Cameron. “But, we are happy to have them open. The exception is Wolf Creek, 95 per cent of the sites were occupied, and then there were day users.”
Cameron said it is normal for Wolf Creek to fill up quicker than the other territorial parks.
“Wolf Creek is the only territorial campground within Whitehorse,” said Cameron. “It is a good place to soft start. If the weather becomes challenging it is easy to pack up, or it is close enough to just do one night.
“It is a really nice territorial park with a great trail network and close to the Yukon River. That explains the popularity.”
The weather also plays its part in the campgrounds business, said Cameron.
“Weather is always a huge factor,” said Cameron. “People will often make the call to go camping on either Thursday or early Friday. At this time, some might not be set up for the cold and wet conditions.
“People should be prepared for that.”
Cameron said the Yukon government has 42 road-accessible campgrounds plus the backcountry campgrounds that will open later in the season. Parks Canada has one road-accessible park and there are First Nations parks as well, said Cameron.
“There are lots of options out there for people,” he said.
After opening weekend, there are now 21 parks accessible for public use and Cameron said the parks team continues to work hard to get the others opened.
As spring continues toward summer, Cameron said they expect the parks to continue to get busier.
“We want to remind people to get their permit and register when they get to a park,” said Cameron. “That helps us make decisions and see how many people are using the parks.”
Since this was the first year the parks opened this early, Cameron expects they will get busier still in future years.
“The signs point to camping getting busier as the population grows,” said Cameron. “People are going to want to get out camping.”
To see the latest information about the territory’s parks Cameron encourages everyone to go to yukon.ca/camping.
Contact John Tonin at firstname.lastname@example.org