As many of you know, one of my favorite areas to go hiking is the Rogers Pass area in Glacier National Park. The Selkirk Mountains run almost north–south through the park and it is a wonderland of mountain peaks, glaciers, and alpine meadows. Aside from being an amazingly majestic place scenery wise, it is also an important area for wildlife habitat. Grizzly and black bears, mountain caribou, mountain goats, moose, cougar, and elk all call Glacier National Park home. Many of these animals naturally cover a huge area over the course of a year they are unaware of the arbitrary park boundaries established by humans. It has often been argued that small islands of park are not effective in maintaining populations of larger migratory animals, or complete ecosystems, and it would be preferable for parks to connect to form large contiguous corridors.
The Valhalla Wilderness Society is proposing the Selkirk Mountain Caribou Park to create an extended wildlife corridor and to protect unique habitat. The park would extend from the southern boarder of Glacier National Park down into the Kootenays and connect with Bugaboo Provincial Park and Goat Range Provincial Park. According the the society, the park would add over 27,000 hectares of wilderness connected to Glacier National Park. The park would not only provide much increased protected habitat for the endangered mountain caribou, it would also include an area of rare temperate rainforrest around the Incomappleux River. The forest is largely unprotected at the moment and is being actively logged in many areas.
The Incomappleux is a unique area of inland temperate rainforest. According to the Valhalla Wilderness Society, the area is home to 2,000 year-old trees , newly discovered species of lichen, and abundant biodiversity. A Kelowna resident, Riel Marquardt, recently release a documentary on the Incomappleux area and it is well worth viewing to understand of why this area is so amazing. Riel’s movie can be viewed on-line at Culture Unplugged or it can be rented from Leo’s Video here in Kelowna.
So, what can you do to help save this area? Well, there is a bunch of stuff you can do.
- Get educated about the area.
- Read about the rainforest on the Valhalla Wilderness Societies website.
- Watch Riel’s video on Culture Unplugged.
- Like the Incomappleux on facebook.
- Sign the petition supporting the formation of the park (contact me directly to get a copy).
- Contact your MLA and tell them why this is so important.
Lets make our voices heard!!!