NEWS

Clayoquot horse trips challenged by environmental group

02/04/2013 01:27 EST | Updated 04/06/2013 05:12 EDT
A Vancouver Island environmental group is challenging the B.C. government's right to allow a high-end wilderness resort the exclusive right to run guided horse trips in a remote area of a provincial park

Friends of Strathcona Park argue the environment ministry should not have issued a park use permit to Clayoquot Wilderness Resort in 2011, allowing the resort to bring guided horse trips into a secluded area of Strathcona Park.

The group say the permit must be overturned because allowing a private company exclusive rights to a wilderness area diminishes the park for everyone.

“No government has the right to give away rights in a park if it is not in the public interest," said Scott Bernstein, the lawyer for Friends of Strathcona, in a statement released on Monday.

"Granting rights that only one business and its high-end clients can enjoy at the expense of the environment is certainly not in the public interest”

The case will be heard this week in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver.

The resort is located northwest of Tofino, on the west coast of Vancouver Island and rates start at $4,750 per person for a three day trip.

The packages that include return airfare from Vancouver, meals, snacks and guided activities including fishing, horseback riding and kayaking.

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