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Backcountry messes targeted by Kelowna shooters

An area off Gillard Forest Service Road in Upper Mission is covered in garbage and a local group of gun advocates want to find a solution.
Image Credit: Jesse Fleming
August 29, 2016 - 8:00 PM


KELOWNA – A group of avid shooters and firearm enthusiasts are fed up with the mess being left behind at their favourite backcountry shooting spots.

A secret Facebook group has recently started sharing their thoughts on how best to handle the increasing number of spent cartridges, shells, beer cans, old furniture and other garbage that is piling up in the woods all around Kelowna.

Local resident Jesse Fleming was the first to share a photo he took of a site up Gillard Forest Service Road in Upper Mission. He says he’s found couches, tables, chairs, appliances, broken bottles and car parts. And it seems to be getting worse with time.

“I don’t get it,” he says. “Who does this? Most outdoorspeople like to see a pristine forest but they’re leaving their trash behind.”

The worst area, he says, is on the way to Postill Lake behind Kelowna International Airport. It is known to many as “Little Iraq.”

“Little Iraq looks like a warzone,” Fleming says. “People bring fridges and couches up there to shoot at and they just leave them there. I took two truckloads out and paid the dump fees myself and it didn’t make a dent.”

Fleming is hoping to rally the shooting community to make a more organized effort to first clean up the sites and then start enforcing some ground rules.

“It’s going to take a community effort,” he says. “We really need somebody who can afford to bring up a five-ton dump truck. It’s that bad. These people are going to get (shooting) outlawed. We can’t lose that to a bunch of idiots.”

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