Part of the Labour Day celebrations in Strathcona Park will include a guided hike to Amphitheatre Lake (above)

Labour Day in the park

Strathcona Wilderness Institute (SWI) is offering programs every day on the Labour Day weekend at the Strathcona Park Wilderness Centre at Paradise Meadows

Strathcona Wilderness Institute (SWI) is offering programs every day on the Labour Day weekend at the Strathcona Park Wilderness Centre at Paradise Meadows.

On Sat. Sept. 3 at 8 a.m. William Wright of the Comox District Mountaineering Club will be the volunteer guide for a ten to 12 hour hike to Amphitheatre Lake. The route will go via Croteau Lake and return via Hairtrigger Lake, with a stop at a point of historical interest – Sid William’s cabin.

This is a very demanding route for a day trip; 28 kilometres long and 900 metres of accumulated elevation gain, and it includes some off-trail terrain. Some of the trip will be on snow where trails will not be visible. Bring bug dope, hiking poles & water sandals for crossing creeks. This outing is restricted to ages 16 and over.  Call 250-650-4304 to register.

The next event is an art and nature talk and walk, called Image Hunting with Pencils & Brushes on Sun. Sept. 4 at 1 p.m. with watercolour artist Clive Powsey.

Powsey will give an indoor presentation on how artists treat the landscape to create dramatic images, advise on basic technical considerations for working ‘en plein air,’ then take the group into the meadows to look for subject matter.  Bring the media of your choice. Call 250-650-4304 to register.

To complete the Labour Day weekend, on Mon. Sept. 5 at 10 a.m. Mandy Vaughan of the Comox Valley Naturalists Society will guide a four-hour hike to Lake Helen Mackenzie. Dogs on leash are okay for this hike, and it’s suitable for all ages.

For all activities: dress for the weather, wear proper footwear, bring lunch or snacks, plenty of water, bug spray and sun protection.

Please don’t bring pets on SWI guided nature walks and hikes unless otherwise noted.

Programs are free, although a donation of $5 to $10 is appreciated to help with the Institute’s ongoing activities.

All SWI activities start at the Wilderness Centre which is located at the Paradise Meadows trailhead to Strathcona Park.

The Centre is operated by the SWI, a non-profit society. Thanks to funding from the Comox Valley Regional District, the Centre will be staffed for visitor information on most days from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. up to Sun. Oct. 2, 2011.

For more information email, or call 250-650-4304.

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