Letters: Protect CRD park as it is

Letter writers feel motorized vehicles do not belong in parks

Every time we hike into the Sea-to-Sea Park Reserve, we discover something new and delightful.

Just this past Thanksgiving, we hiked to Peden Lake, and couldn’t resist a paddle in the free canoe, and a swim in the beautiful, pure lake despite temperatures appropriate for October. On our way up to the lake, we met several other hikers, including a family with a baby and a toddler, and were impressed to find the lakeshore and cabin maintained in good condition, despite being such a popular destination. Obviously, people who visit there appreciate and respect the natural beauty and wilderness character of this very special area.

So we were quite bemused to read Mr. Terrance Martin’s letter in the Sooke News Mirror, calling for “access” to the Capital Regional District park lands.  As our experience attests, CRD residents and visitors already have access – by hiking. The trail is well maintained and signed, and there is even a canoe waiting at the lake – a thoughtful touch. We cannot see what more the CRD could possibly be expected to do.

Could it be that Mr. Terrance Martin desires access of a different kind – aboard a noisy, motorized machine?

On the trail that Thanksgiving Monday, the hikers were literally a cross-section of the population, representing all ages from a baby being carried in a swing, to a 70+ elder. The level of access to the Sea-to-Sea Park Reserve was sufficient for us to enjoy the wilderness experience, while protecting the ecosystem from damage by motorized vehicles.

In our opinion, by setting aside the Sea-to-Sea Park Reserve and allowing pedestrian access, the Regional District has acted wisely and struck the right balance between the needs of current and future residents, as well as the forest and wildlife.

Ana Simeon and Tom Martin

Victoria, B.C.