Darling Lake Trail


Stop Work Order and Trespass Notice



Darling Lake Trail Stop Work Order, Murray Watt, FLNRO Compliance and Enforcement Officer, August 2015 (4,396 KB)

On August 26, 2015, the BCMC was served with a Stop Work Order and Trespass Notice delivered by registered mail and issued by Murray Watt, Compliance and Enforcement Officer of Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.

2020 Commentary

The trespass notice contains what we consider major factual errors. Our position:

  1. The alleged impact on sensitive ecological sites is a complete fabrication. The trail does not approach Mountain Goat winter range. No evidence exists that the trail comes anywhere near mineral licks. The existence of mineral licks in Garibaldi Park has not been proven.
  2. The trail has been in existence for at least 20 years and the route in use for over thirty years. The Garibaldi Park 1990 Master Plan was deficient in not recognizing the trail. The Sea to Sky Land and Resource Management Plan of 2009 recognized the trail route as a major backcountry access route. Consultation with First Nations was not done because it is a more recent requirement. The trail has existed long before.
  3. The Garibaldi Park 1990 Master Plan did not put limits on the number of people entering the park. There is no management criteria that establishes a specific threshold number beyond which it is considered trespass. It is quite probably illegal for park managers to specifically discourage access to the park.
  4. The idea that the so-called Paranoid Creek is fish-bearing is fantastic considering the stream course over which the footbridge spans is bracketed both upstream and downstream by high waterfalls. No fish can pass upstream of the waterfalls.

It is also the position of the BCMC that the trail work was permitted under the FRPA, Part 3, Authorization not required subsection 2.

Part 3 — Unauthorized Trail or Recreation Facility Construction

Authorization under section 57 of the Act not required

3  (1) For the purposes of section 57 of the Act, the construction, rehabilitation or maintenance of a trail or recreation facility does not include

(a) marking a route with ribbons, cairns or other directional indicators, or

(b) minor clearing of brush, downed trees or repairs to a trail or recreation facility.

(2) Despite section 57 of the Act, a person may construct, rehabilitate or maintain a trail without the authorization of the minister if doing so is the only reasonable means of minimizing a risk to personal safety.

Stop Work Order posted on trail August 10, 2015


Darling Lake Trail Stop Work Order ORCS File No. 23060-40, Murray Watt, FLNRO Compliance and Enforcement Officer, August 10, 2015 (304 KB)

In August 2015, Stop Work Order ORCS File No. 23060-40 was posted on the "connector trail" segment of Darling Lake Trail by Murray Watt, Compliance and Enforcement Officer of Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.

2020 Commentary

The stop work order contains what we consider major factual errors. Our position:

  1. No trail building occurred in Garibaldi Provincial Park.
  2. No merchantable crown timber was cut. Only two trees of a diameter of 3 inches, no larger, one of which had a broken top, were cut.
  3. No unauthorized activity occurred in a park, conservancy or recreation area.
  4. Additionally, "making changes in and about a stream" is highly contentious.

Letter to Honourable Steve Thompson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, RE: Stop Work Order at Paranoid Creek


Letter to Hon. Steve Thomson, Minister of FLNRO, BCMC, September 4, 2015 (1,201 KB)

In September 2015, the BCMC wrote to the Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations regarding the Stop Work Order posted by Murray Watt.


Letter to Honourable Andrew Wilkinson from Chris Ludwig, August 10, 2015


Letter to Hon. Andrew Wilkinson, Minister of Advanced Education and former BCMC president, Chris Ludwig, August 10, 2015 (318 KB)

Chris Ludwig, the BCMC Cabins and Trails representative at the time, wrote to Honourable Andrew Wilkinson in the provincial cabinet.

Andrew Wilkinson was president of the BCMC in the early 1990s. Chris hoped to establish a dialogue with cabinet ministers to enable the Darling Lake Trail project to proceed.

Darling Lake Trail Rejection Letter


Darling Lake Trail Rejection Letter, Unsigned, August 11, 2015 (122 KB)

The BCMC received an unsigned letter from Recration Sites and Trails BC dated August 11, 2015 that the Darling Lake Trail application was rejected.



Photo: Crown timber allegedly felled by BCMC to bridge Paranoid Creek. The tree fell by itself across the creek. You can see the shattered base where it broke off.

Paranoid Falls Trail Rejection Letter

Letter100 Paranoid Falls Trail Rejection Letter, (Name Withheld to protect Source), Recreation Officer, December 10, 2015 (122 KB)

The BCMC recast the Darling Lake Trail application as the Paranoid Falls Trail application. It was realized that a formal Section 57 authorization under the FRPA was not going to happen while the 1990 Master Plan was in effect. Until it is changed, the Paranoid Falls Trail application was seen as a way to ensure public safety by upgrading the footbridge under Section 57. On December 15th, 2015 the club received a communication from (Name Withheld to protect Source) that Recreation Sites and Trails BC was not proceeding with the application.

2020 Commentary

This letter acknowledges:
  1. Volunteer trail builders and members of the public have a right to clear logging roads without formal permission from government. 
  2. Secondly, it acknowledges that BC Parks and the Forest Office are making efforts to limit and obstruct public access to Garibaldi Park.
  3. It states that the Paranoid Falls Trail is of low recreational value, which is of course highly subjective (and comical considering the major interest in the trail). For example, one weekend in summer there were over a dozen people in the alpine area around Darling Lake.
If an application for a Section 57 trail designation is made, the forest office is required to proceed with the vetting process (regardless of the merit of the application).  We at Garibaldi Park 2020 believe that the Paranoid Falls Trail Application was not treated in a unbiased manner.
It is highly unlikely that the Squamish Forest Office presented the proposed Darling Lake Trail and Paranoid Falls Trail Applications to Squamish First Nations in a manner that was unbiased and neutral, which they are required to do under the civil service code of conduct.  In fact, this Email confirms that they didn't even bother to forward the proposed Paranoid Falls Application to Squamish First Nations.  Being that both applications were rejected based on falsehoods, it is only logical to assume that any opposition from Squamish First Nations is a direct result of falsehoods and subjective statements supplied to them by the Squamish Forest Office.

Officer Watt's Goat Lick

DarlingLakeMineralLick alleged

Officer Watt alleges there is a goat mineral lick on the south side of Darling Lake on granitic bedrock terraces.