The recent story about the mad quad rider in Kamloops who ran down a young black bear and killed it with a machete reminds me of the stories 35 years ago in Northern Alberta when Ski-Doos first became popular. Any coyote, fox or whatever that got caught out on a big lake was often run down and clubbed to death by the machine’s owner. I thought we had evolved since then, but apparently not.
I recently went fishing at Wooden Shoe Lake north of Creston, a beautiful small sub alpine lake which was developed as a recreation site in the 1970s. The last time I went fishing there, about a dozen years ago, I parked at the parking area about half a mile from the lake and then hiked in, an easy fairly level hike and really enjoyed my trip. What a good idea to keep the cars and trucks away from the lake thereby not ruining the wilderness feeling.
This time I parked at the same parking area, and proceeded to pack my canoe the half mile to the lake. The original trail unfortunately had turned into a quad trail and, of course where it was wet, new trail had been chewed in by the quad owners. They just chew in a trail destroying the environment wherever they please after turning all the wetlands into mud holes. There are two creeks to cross on the way to the once pristine lake, but, no problem for the quad people, they just drive right through, and no one even tries to stop them.
The day of fishing was very enjoyable when it was not being ruined by quad racket. When we were finished our day of fishing we packed our boat and equipment out again and when we reached the truck we were met by two people on a quads both unhealthily obese, but no way would they consider parking at the parking area and walking in. Straight thru the creeks, off they went.
Now I know that a lot of people are making big money selling these awful things, but it is really sad that the beautiful BC backcountry had to take it in the neck to keep these lazy people happy.
By rights the very least the government should do is put some restrictions on the use of quads and hire some people to enforce them, but they are too busy printing fishing and hunting regulation books with a quad ad on every second page. Money trumps the environment again.
I am sure that quad riders will respond to my lament claiming to be responsible lovers of the environment. I don’t buy it. If you truly love and respect the environment you would get off your butt and get out there and enjoy it without destroying it. The way quad people treat the backcountry is a very shameful thing.