World-renowned Island outdoor education centre marks 60th anniversary

Strathcona Park Lodge book re-launch celebrates history of landmark wilderness centre

Strathcona Park Lodge and Outdoor Education Centre celebrates its 60th anniversary this year and part of the celebration is the re-launch of a history of the lodge.

Situated on Highway 28 halfway between Campbell River and Gold River, the ‘Lodge,’ as it is affectionately known, began as a cedar log building that floated across from one side of the lake to the other when Upper Campbell Lake was flooded during the 1958 construction of Strathcona Dam.

RELATED: Vancouver Island author tells the story of epic, treacherous maritime voyage

A year later, the building landed on the shore of property belonging to Wallace Baikie, that he then sold to his daughter Myrna and her husband Jim Boulding who intended to start a boy’s camp.

The camp idea was abandoned in favour of tourism, but by the early 1970s, the Bouldings had reprised their idea of training in the outdoors. Influenced by such notable conservationists as Roderick Haig-Brown and George Clutesi, they began the long journey of establishing what was to become a world-renowned outdoor education centre.

In time to celebrate the lodge’s 50th anniversary, Myrna wrote and produced a history of the lodge entitled Survival Strathcona Style, Off the Grid and On the Edge.

Now reprinted, with additional colour photos and a new cover, this account of the Bouldings’ pioneering efforts to establish their business in rugged central Vancouver Island while continuing to work as teachers and raise five children, is as entertaining as it is informative.

Interspersed with anecdotes and personal photos from friends, family and staff who passed through the portal of the lodge, and letters and articles that highlight the challenges of developing an unlikely enterprise that survived a multitude of challenges, the lodge story is as unique as its intrepid author and her late husband.

Truly ‘off the grid’ and ‘on the edge,’ the lodge is now operated by Myrna’s son Jamie and his wife Christine Clarke, and continues to spearhead environmental practices and operate as a green business in a splendid wilderness setting.

RELATED: Jason Momoa, Vancouver Island, co-star in new TV series ‘See’

Myrna and local historian Catherine Gilbert are hosting a pictorial presentation about the lodge and an opportunity to see the view the new book on Saturday, Oct. 19 from 1 – 3 p.m. at the Campbell River Museum, 470 Island Hwy, Campbell River.

Just Posted

Environment Canada issues gale warnings for most of Vancouver Island

Gale warnings in effect for most of Vancouver Island and west coast Mainland

Vancouver Island children’s author wins American award for The Moon Watched it All

Ladysmith’s Shelley Leedahl’s book took gold in the All Ages Picture Book category

Vancouver Island-penned musical sluggish and proud of it

VIU theatre department debuts instructor’s original new musical, ‘SlugFest’

Western Speedway racing legend ‘The Flying Plumber’ turns 98

Dave Cooper recalls car crashes, his first win, and more

Attraction in a hurry: Speed dating comes to Vancouver Island

Fresh Connections connecting adults in rapid succession

BC Ferries crew member taken to hospital after getting struck by bow doors

Two sailings between Horseshoe Bay and Departure Bay were cancelled

Greta Thunberg meets with First Nations chief in Fort McMurray

Thunberg has turned her protest against climate change into a global movement

Canucks hang on for 3-2 win over Rangers in New York

Vancouver scores three times in first period

More beef products recalled due to possible E. coli contamination

The food safety watchdog has been investigating possible E. coli 0157:H7

B.C. VIEWS: How to get the best deal on your ICBC car insurance

ICBC slowly being dragged into the 21st century

Pot legalization has gone ‘well’, but ‘yellow flags’ on vaping: task force chair

Canada legalized cannabis for non-medical use on Oct. 17, 2018,

Most Read