in Canada are about to face some disappointment as Parks Canada temporarily bans the game
within its national parks:
"There might be an increase on off-trail travel in those locations which could displace animals and wildlife or perhaps lead to trampling and erosion, " Parks Canada spokeswoman Claire McNeil told CBC News.
Geocachers will have to remain patient until the government agency devises a policy regarding the game, which will likely be next year. In the meantime, Parks Canada is offering this interim geocaching policy
- A moratorium has been placed on new physical caches. Existing physical caches will be removed, as will the website postings of physical caches. Web material will be archived through cooperation with website administrators.
- Physical geocaching is now posted as a prohibited activity in all Parks Canada-administered protected heritage areas, in order to provide a regulatory and compliance mechanism for managing the activity.
Personally, I would like to see Parks Canada work with geocaching and use it to fulfill its mandate to educate. Caches are hidden in the same areas where you will find campers, hikers, mountain bikers, and photographers - public areas. As long as caches have been placed in these areas and not in nesting regions or other areas of concern, there should not be an issue. Geocachers in general are very eco-savvy and caches tend to be just a few feet off of the beaten path.
Parks Canada is to manage the parks for use by all Canadians, not own them. I am sure that a solution could be arranged, barring all of the bureaucratic red tape. The concern will be if provincial and municipal parks blindly follow the lead of Parks Canada and ban geocaching there as well.