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General News · 11th June 2014
Wendy Legare
Parks of Cortes Island at a Glance:
The Strathcona Regional District Community Parks Service for Cortes Island/Area B refers to lands, trails, beach accesses, and Boat Launches the result of properties transferred/gifted to the SRD, leased, permitted, or by license of occupation.

Blind Creek Boat Launch - public boat launch
Carrington Bay Park - 214 ha, 531 ac - 30 year lease from Province $1.00 (no kidding)
Cortes Skate Park - less than 1ha, leased from SCCA
Hank's Beach Forest Conservation Park - 63ha, 153 ac. - DONATED to the SRD includes a $150,000 endowment 'in perpetuity' ; interest pays some operating expenses
Gnat Park - ~ 1ac. Trail, beach access.
Kw'as Park/ Kw'as Park Trails - leased from Province
Moon Park - Trail, beach access
Seascape Park - Trail access with new steps to beach
Siskin Forest Park - ~ 5ha, 13ac.- DONATED to the SRD as per subdivision requirement
Siskin Forest Trails - as per above
The NEW Ferry Park - trails with road access ; fruit arboretum - future benches, picnic table, small bridges.

ON THE RADAR - seven possible beach accesses. The Crown land at the southern tip of the island, and private forest land near Carrington Bay ~650 ac. - known as a Forest for the Children of Cortes - are also mentioned in the OCP as "future park interests".

Gorge Harbour Park - ~4 acres -leased by the Whaletown Community Club from the Province for 30 years $1.00.
Donations and volunteer labour gladly accepted to help maintain it.

We can also enjoy our Provincial Parks paid by the provinces tax coffers.
H'athayim/Von Donop Marine Park-1277ha, 3155 ac
Smelt Bay Provincial Park-16 ha, 40ac.
Manson's Landing Park- 100 ha, 241ac. (47ha upland, 53ha foreshore)

Total of all current Cortes Island Parkland = ~4600 acres .
Regardless of location, it's there for everyone to enjoy.

Apparently not a done deal, the possibility of the Regional District purchasing private forest land - named by the Society as 'Whaletown Commons' - that would consume the lion's share of Area B Parks Reserve funds and require a substantial loan, heralds an unprecedented event in the history of Cortes Regional Parks demanding sober second thought.