Grade nine students from Kimberley’s Selkirk Secondary School made the most of the last week of school by joining the annual Go Wild trip to Elk Lakes Provincial Park north of Elkford. Led by Selkirk Outdoor Skills teacher Kate Haennel and Association of Canadian Mountain Guides’ Dave Quinn, the ten students got to experience one of the East Kootenay’s spectacular protected areas through a five-day, self supported backpacking trip.
Dave Quinn notes that “one of the great parts of these trips is that we often get to partner with BC Parks. We met up with Park Rangers Jim Gray and Lisa Steele to learn about their jobs, and help them with some campground maintenance and trail building, helping rebuild some of the damage done to park infrastructure during the June 2013 flood.”
The group spent two nights at Lower Elk Lakes, and two nights at Petain campsite. Day trips to Petain Falls and the rarely visited and vast alpine cathedral of Petain Basin were highlights of the trip. Fresh grizzly, goat, and moose sign were everywhere, but hot weather kept the animals hunkered out of sight during the days.
This trip would not be possible without the generous support of parents, School District #6, BC Parks’ Park Enhancement Fund, the Selkirk Parent Advisory Council, Kootenay Communications, and the Columbia Basin Environmental Education Network’s Wild Voices for Kids program.