Making the most of Metro Vancouver’s regional parks in fall and winter

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      (This story is presented by Metro Vancouver.)

      During the summer months it’s easy to get outside and make the most of the great outdoors. But with fall fast approaching that doesn’t mean you should curb your alfresco activities.

      Metro Vancouver is home to 22 regional parks that you can visit year-round to go for a walk, breathe fresh air, and enjoy the beauty of nature—come rain or shine. They're also part of a larger system that includes regional park reserves, ecological conservancy areas, and greenways—all located within the traditional homelands of the Coast Salish First Nations.

      There are lots of benefits to spending more time outside, but for those who are looking to reconnect with nature, there are guided programs every month that reveal the natural world through exploration and discovery. 

      Through the fall, there are six Wednesday Wanderings taking place at regional parks across Metro Vancouver. The adult-only walks give participants the opportunity to learn about nature’s wonders, while enjoying some of B.C.’s most beautiful natural spaces.

      Registration is required and each session costs less than a latte! 

      Budding ecologists at the “Salmon and Big Trees” session will find out about the fascinating connections between the fish and the trees. The engaging field trip takes place from 10:30 a.m. to noon on September 18 at Capilano River Regional Park in North Vancouver and attendees will enjoy a stunning stroll through one of the North Shore’s green landmarks and walk away with some new knowledge under their belts.

      In an era of screens, it can sometimes be easy to forget to look up. But those who attend the “Autumn Stargazing” session from 7:30 to 9 p.m. on September 25 will find a whole new appreciation of the night sky. During a special evening edition of Wednesday Wanderings at Iona Beach Regional Park in Richmond, participants will learn some hints on how to pick out planets, constellations, and other celestial phenomena.

      The program will be brought back down to Earth with the new “Mysterious Mosses Magnified” session taking place from 10 a.m. to noon on October 9 at Campbell Valley Regional Park in Langley. Attendees on this hands-on walk will discover the mysterious world of mosses and the miniature ecosystems that thrive at our feet.

      To mark the onset of dropping temperatures, nature enthusiasts won’t want to miss the opportunity to learn why some birds make the region their winter destination. The new “Winter Waterfowl” session takes place from 10 a.m. to noon on November 13 at Minnekhada Regional Park in Coquitlam.

      When the temperatures drop, nature enthusiasts enjoy the beauty of Metero Vancouver parks.

      On December 4 from 10 a.m. to noon at Deas Island Regional Park in Delta, “Exploring Eagles” will educate participants on why the once-endangered bird is now so abundant in the region in winter. They’ll also discover some of the habitat components that allow these magnificent creatures to thrive.

      Ending the program on a high from 10 a.m. to noon on December 11 will be “Woodpeckers and Waterfowl on the Wing” at Aldergrove Regional Park in Langley. Participants will be guided through a restricted-access wetland to find woodpeckers and waterfowl that are specially adapted to survive in this unique habitat.

      A Pileated Woodpecker

      Wednesday Wanderings take place from September 18 to December 11 at regional parks across Metro Vancouver. Registration is required, so don’t forget to book your spot at www.metrovancouveronline.org. Attendance at each session is $3 per person. For more information, the schedule of programs, and events, as well as volunteer opportunities, visit the website and search ‘Check it Out’.  And remember to follow this series to discover more about Metro Vancouver’s regional parks.

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