Punky Lake Wilderness Camp Society will not be running its wilderness camp in the Chilcotin this summer due to an act of vandalism.
“I think it happened Friday,” said executive director Sarah Jackman who has been with the non-profit society for three years. “There are several people back and forth and some caretakers down the road who check in on the camp. I got a call about it on Saturday.”
Jackman went there on Canada Day to see the damage for herself and estimated it was in the thousands.
“Almost every door has been beat in using what looks like an axe, but I’m not absolutely certain,” she said.
Several windows were broken, the pantry was cleared out of dry goods, and things like frying pans, stainless steel pots and roasters are gone.
The vandals also tried to start up the generator and water systems.
“It was almost like they were thinking they could come and stay there,” Jackman said. “They sure left me a mess to deal with.”
Typically the camp operates in July and August providing youth an opportunity to go to camp who might not have the chance.
“It’s really disappointing,” Jackman said. “It’s a service we offer for free and we run for the most part on grants, donations and a few small government contracts. A lot of the stuff we have out there has been donated.”
To access the camp, people take the Puntzi Lake turnoff on Highway 20, and then take a wilderness road about 56 kilometres.