Dutch Creek Hoodoos named Nature Destination
Nature Conservancy of Canada expands its Nature Destinations network
The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is giving people more inspiration to spend time outdoors and connect with Canada’s natural beauty this summer.
The not-for profit, private land conservation organization has announced 10 new Nature Destinations, part of a network showcasing some of British Columbia’s and Canada’s important natural areas. NCC is the only conservation group in the country to offer access to a network of such conservation sites, from coast to coast.
NCC is encouraging people to explore these Nature Destinations, both on the ground and online, in all 10 provinces. These spaces offer opportunities for people to hike, explore and see wildlife. Many are close to urban centres, providing a place to escape the city.
Featuring an accessible trail leading up to unique sandstone cliffs – the hoodoos – and offering spectacular panoramic views of the Columbia Valley, Dutch Creek Hoodoos has long been a popular local landmark. Interpretive signs installed last year illuminate the natural and cultural history of the area.
The other Nature Destination site in British Columbia is the Sage and Sparrow Conservation Area in the South Okanagan, which was designated in 2017. There are now 29 Nature Destination sites across the country.
Through its Nature Destinations program, NCC has several goals. It hopes to get people outside so they can enjoy the health benefits of being active in nature. The organization also hopes that people will gain an appreciation for the ecological benefits that nature offers, such as clean air and water — things that people often take for granted. NCC also wants to provide people with an up-close look at its conservation efforts.
The Nature Destinations website, naturedestinations.ca, provides detailed information on all 29 locations, including interactive maps, species to spot, trail information and easy-to-follow directions. A list of the sites is attached.
“We are pleased to offer these sites that help Canadians from all walks of life connect with nature,” said John Lounds, Nature Conservancy of Canada president and chief executive officer. “The ‘great outdoors’ brings families and friends together, and can provide health benefits and a greater appreciation of nature.”
Natu re Conservancy of Canada Nature Destinations
Alberta (3): Bunchberry Meadows, bordering Edmonton, Nodwell property near Drumheller, Hopkins property on Coyote Lake.
British Columbia (2): Dutch Creek Hoodoos Conservation Area near Fairmont Hot Springs, Sage and Sparrow Conservation Area in Osoyoos.
Manitoba (3): The Forks Prairie Garden in Winnipeg, The Weston Family Tallgrass Prairie Interpretive Centre, near Stuartburn (includes Prairie Orchid Trail), Agassiz Interpretive Trail, located next to The Weston Family Tallgrass Prairie Interpretive Centre.
New Brunswick (3): Johnson’s Mills Shorebird Reserve and Interpretive Centre near Dorchester; Lincoln Wetland Natural Area, near Fredericton, Musquash Estuary, 15 minutes west of Saint John, (Five Fathom Hole and Black Beach trails on the Bay of Fundy.
Newfoundland and Labrador (2): Maddox Cove Nature Reserve, near St. John’s, and Grand Codroy Valley Estuary in Doyles.
Nova Scotia (4): Pugwash Estuary, Gaff Point near Lunenburg, Brier Island on the western tip of Nova Scotia, Abraham Lake Nature Reserve, east of Upper Musquodoboit.
Ontario (3): Hazel Bird Nature Reserve in Harwood, North Bear Alvar (Carden) near Orillia, Backus Woods in Norfolk County.
Prince Edward Island (1): Thomas Island in Murray Harbour.
Quebec (5): Green Mountains Nature Reserve in the Eastern Township. Alfred-Kelly Nature Reserve in Piedmont, Pointe Saint-Pierre in Barachois, Hochelaga Archipelago near Montreal, Jean-Paul Riopelle Nature Reserve near Montmagny.
Saskatchewan (3): Old Man on His Back Prairie Heritage and Conservation Area, in the rural municipality of Frontier, Fairy Hill South Complex, 30 minutes north of Regina, Maymont Complex in the rural Municipality of Glenside (virtual destination, limited public access).
Lead image: Geologist Bill Ayrton, of Windermere, at the interpretive sign he helped draft atop Dutch Creek Hoodoos. NCC photos