Parts of South Okanagan's Christie Mountain damaged by wildfire closed to public | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Parts of South Okanagan's Christie Mountain damaged by wildfire closed to public

A wildlife management area on Christie Mountain is closed to public use after being damaged in last year's Christie Mountain wildfire.
May 12, 2021 - 10:37 AM

A wildlife management area on Christie Mountain south of Penticton has been closed to public use because of damage from last summer’s wildfire.

The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development said in a release issued today, May 12, the McTaggart-Cowan/nsek’Iniw't wildlife management area on Christie Mountain will be closed for all public use after a portion of the wildlife management area was severely damaged in last year’s fire.

The area will be off limits to mushroom picking, camping and motor vehicle use due to sensitivity of the landscape to impacts from public use, the ministry said.

The closure does not apply to most uses where a legal permit or tenure has been obtained or to indigenous uses for food, social, cultural or ceremonial activities.

The Penticton Indian Band and the province are working together to assess and monitor public use in the wildlife management area.

The McTaggert-Cowan wildlife management area protects bighorn sheep in the area.
The McTaggert-Cowan wildlife management area protects bighorn sheep in the area.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development

The McTaggart-Cowan/nsek’Iniw't WMA is 6,491 hectares in size and was established in 2013 to protect habitat for at-risk bighorn sheep. It lies southeast of Penticton and east of Skaha Lake.

The area is known as nsek’Iniw’t in the Syilx language. The place name refers to the gash on the side of the mountain and describes an important Indigenous trail. The area has significant cultural value to the Syilx people.

The McTaggart-Cowan wildlife management area on Christie Mountain near Penticton.
The McTaggart-Cowan wildlife management area on Christie Mountain near Penticton.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development

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