Strathcona Wilderness Institute




For More Information, check out the Calendar and to Preregister email:


Paradise Meadows Walks

There are  guided and self-guided walk opportunities in Paradise Meadows. The self-guided interpretive walk is of interest to many naturalists and nature lovers. Pick up a brochure at the Wilderness Centre & look for plant signs installed by Strathcona Wilderness Institute along the way. You can download the Interpretive Nature Walk brochure (two 11″ x 17″ size pages, pdf format 3.4 MB) Sometimes in the meadows, due to unusual conditions, the early and late flowers bloom at the same time, which makes for an interesting summer!

Paradise Meadows Summer Program

In addition to self-guided walks in Paradise Meadows, the Strathcona Wilderness Institute also offers a weekend series of guided nature walks and hikes. Outings are guided by volunteers for the Institute.

Make sure to view the calendar for the latest Summer 2017 Schedule.

Nature Walks: 2-3 hour walks & talks on a nature theme.

Level 1 Hikes: 3-4 hour hikes with a guide, for all ages.

Level 2 Hikes: 5-7 hour hikes with guide, intermediate hikers.

Level 3 Hikes: 8-10 hour hikes with guide, fit hikers only. Strenuous & a long day.

All programs are presented by the Strathcona Wilderness Institute (a non-profit charity). Cost is by donation for all activities.($5 – 10 / person) Programs start at the Strathcona Park Wilderness Centre, adjacent to Raven Lodge at Mount Washington. No pets please on SWI guided nature walks & hikes unless noted otherwise.

Please read the guidelines for day hikers before attending an outing.


Gray Jay Project 

If you see on the trails around Paradise Meadows some of our ubiquitous gray jays sporting multi-coloured bracelets, it is because Dan Strickland, retired Algonquin Park Naturalist, is initiating a study of the Pacific populations of Perisoreus canadensis  in the Park.  Having worked extensively on the populations in Ontario and Quebec, he is turning his attention to the west, to determine if our populations exhibit different behavioural patterns.   This Fall he banded and took samples from over 100 Jays in the Paradise Meadows and the Battleship and Helen Mackenzie Lakes area and he will return in the Spring to observe nesting habits . The mult-icoloured bands will give each jay an individual identity .

Dan has sent out a call for information on sightings over the Winter – if you are out on skis or snowshoes in the areas on the map in his poster ( see below)  you may well encounter birds with their unique combination of coloured plus conventional bands.  If you take a digital photograph and record the location of your sighting, please send it to Dan at the following email address:



To download the poster click on :  strathcona-banding-sign




Female & Male White-tailed Ptarmigan

Female & Male White-tailed Ptarmigan

Ptarmigan Bird Cards

The Vancouver Island White-tailed Ptarmigan Conservation Project was developed in cooperation with Mountain Equipment Co-op, Canadian Nature Federation, and the University of British Columbia. It increased awareness, through public outreach and education, for the on-going work of the Centre of Alpine Studies at UBC. The Record Sighting Cards are still being distributed & the reports received will next be used to evaluate the impact of climate change on alpine birds on Vancouver Island.

At several trail heads throughout Strathcona Park and Mount Arrowsmith, posters explain the project, show what a Ptarmigan looks like, and encourage the Park visitor to record any Ptarmigan sightings on a record card.

Download the record card (150 KB), which you can print out and take with you.