A series of public meetings are underway to provide the public with information concerning up-coming changes to regulations dealing with backcountry recreation.
Meetings have already been held in Telkwa, Smithers, Houston and there are still two meeting left. Round Lake this Wednesday at the local hall and again Thursday. Both round lake meetings will take place between 6:30 and 9 pm.
The ministry of forests are staging the gathering before they draft changes to the rules which will then be worked into the Cariboo Recovery Plan. While Mike Dunbar of the Bulkley Backcountry Ski Society says while the changes can be seen as positive, they may have an impact on the Starr Creek area and that would impact the societies membership.
Dunbar sees the changes as limiting activities and he concedes having no activities in the backcountry is where this is all going. He says the government is imposing limits on activities and they will decide how much activity they should allow and then spit it between the skiers and snowmobilers. They will also have specific open times during the winter and permits will be required.
Dunbar says the permits will depend on finding Cariboo before the areas are opened to recreators. Some of the animals have been fitted with electronic collars and can be tracked and that will determine what areas are closed or open.
He says he believes Victoria wants to come up with local solution instead of being dictated to by federal regulators. Since Cariboo are on the endangered list they therefore fall under federal jurisdiction.