Albertans disappointed after being kicked out of B.C. park

A group of would-be campers feeling unwelcomed by their neighbours to the west. Jackie Perez speaks with an Albertan who was evicted from their camp site and threatened with arrest.

CALGARY (CityNews) – Threatened with arrest and kicked out of the province. A group of Albertans were looking to enjoy one of B.C.’s provincial parks, only to be told to leave.

Alexey Gorozhalov and his camping group went out to White Swan Provincial Park about a week ago.

When they arrived, he says the park’s operator wasn’t clear on the rules and let them in any way. However, less than 24 hours later the park’s operator and police asked them to leave.

The operator told Gorozhalov and his group they were being evicted for causing a disturbance. While police told them they could be arrested if they didn’t pack up.

A statement from B.C. Parks reads “We want to ensure British Columbians have access to summer vacation opportunities close to home, so we are limiting new reservations to B.C. residents.”

No reservations are needed at Whiteswan Lake Provincial Park and Gorozhalov says COVID-19 restrictions weren’t posted anywhere on the grounds and the website was not clear.

“I checked the website, a friend of mine checked the website. I asked my son, he checked the website. None of them could find the information about out of province. After we came back to Calgary they couldn’t give me a clear answer whether we are allowed or not.”

On the BC Parks website in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) under travelling to parks it states:

“This is not the time for inter-provincial travel for recreational purposes. Public health officers are advising people to stay close to home. Additionally, you may be refused service upon arrival at the campground.”

“(We’re) disappointed because we go there every year for the last seven years at least three-four times a year,” said Gorozhalov they don’t like Albertans there that’s what I would say.”

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