Gros Morne National Park program helps visitors discover the great outdoors
© Submitted photo
People take part in Gros Morne National Park's Lean to Camp program in Lomond.
LOMOND — About 25 visitors learned what it’s like to spend time in the great outdoors last weekend.
The first-time tenters took advantage of the park’s inaugural Learn to Camp program at Lomond. The program helped urban and new Canadians and families with young children overcome barriers when it comes to camping, such as a lack of access, equipment and knowledge about the great outdoors.
Participants in the program were given a beginner’s session on how to camp, picking up tips on skills like how to pitch a tent, cook and store food outdoors and enjoyed a campfire, complete with marshmallows and a sing-along.
“Camping is just a part of our Canadian culture,” said Kevin Barnes, national park interpreter and vice-chief of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Band in a prepared release.
“These days, not all families are able to do what many of us just took for granted as children.”
Barnes said that the program held in Gros Morne National Park equally provided campers the opportunity to enjoy meaningful interpretive activities related to his Aboriginal culture. They participated in a medicine walk that taught campers about medicinal plants. They awoke to the sound of a native drum and joined in a sunrise ceremony just as the sun came over Killdevil Mountain, listening to the prayers that the Mi’kmaq give to the four directions.
Participants needed only to bring their sleeping bags and some personal items while equipment like tents and tent pads were provided for them.