The view from the recreation site at Big Lake. Campers are welcome to stay here and at a number of sites throughout the rights and title area.

The view from the recreation site at Big Lake. Campers are welcome to stay here and at a number of sites throughout the rights and title area.

Xeni Gwet’in recreation sites open for the season

Free recreation sites established 10 years ago by the Xeni Gwet’in (Nemiah Valley) in the Chilcotin will continue.

Free recreation sites established 10 years ago by the Xeni Gwet’in (Nemiah Valley) in the Chilcotin will continue under the community’s care, said Xeni Gwet’in (Nemiah Valley) Coun. Marilyn Baptiste in anticipation of the upcoming May long weekend.

“We welcome you to come respect our home lands,” Baptiste said Tuesday from Nemiah Valley. “This is reflected through the high value, low impact services the Xeni Gwet’in have been providing for over 10 years.”

Nemiah Valley is located about two and half hours drive south west of Williams Lake and for at least a decade the Xeni Gwet’in have managed a total of 10 recreation sites.

Six of the recreation sites  —  Chilko-Taseko River Junction, Cochin Lake, Choelquoit Lake, Tsuniah Lake, Vedan Lake and Chaunigan Lake — are in the title area affirmed by the June 2014 Supreme Court rights and title case.

The other four sites are outside the title area and include recreation sites at Fish Lake, Taseko-Davidson Bridge, Scum Lake and Little Eagle Lake.

Baptiste said there are two more recreation sites within the territory.

Big Lake, which is managed by Roland Class, and the Tatlayoko Lake site, managed by the Tatlayoko community.

In addition to the recreation sites, Xeni Gwet’in co-manages two provincial campground sites within Tsil?os Provincial Park.

“We work with BC Parks and provide two Xeni Gwet’in rangers one at  Gwadets’ih at the north end of Chilko Lake and one at Nu Chugh Beniz at the south end of Chilko Lake.”

Baptiste said the Xeni Gwet’in emphasize an eco-system based conservation land management for a healthy future and they look forward to continuing to provide opportunities for people to experience the beauty of  Nemiah Valley.

“You can enjoy a variety of accommodation options from camping in our designated areas to bed and breakfasts and the lodges of the sustainable wilderness tourism operators we work with within the Xeni Gwet’in Caretaker area,” Baptiste added.

To learn more about the area stop in at the Visitor Info Centre at the Westend of Konnie Lake in Nemiah Valley, fuel up at their Xeni Gwet’in Enterprise Gas and Laundry or visit the website www.xeni.ca.

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