Canada’s National Parks

Well I’ve thought up a new life long ambition: To visit each and every one of Canada’s 46 National Parks. Not just visit though, I have to go on an adventure in each one. For instance I’ve been through Yoho National Park, Grasslands National Park and Prince Albert National park before but cannot include them on my ‘completed’ list because I didn’t actually do any sort of outdoor activity while there.

I have been to and done many things in Banff, Jasper and Waterton Lakes so they’re the first three I can check off my list. 3 down, 43 to go. It might not seem like a huge adventure to achieve this until you actually start doing the research and crunching the numbers. I figure if I buckled down I could finish in 25 years at a cost of 1/4 million dollars.

If you’re like most people (including me) who have only been to the big ones it would be easy to think why National Parks are just a place for tourists to visit and get some fresh air, but that’s not the main purpose of a National Park at all. The primary reason for a National Park to be created is preservation of the landscape and wildlife; conservation. Because of this a good portion of Canada’s National Parks are far away from populations and easily accessible areas. Many of them require chartered airplanes, boats, helicopters ect. just to gain access to there remote locations. Located in every single province and territory, I would have to travel Canada East, west, and North many times over to experience the wonders of every single National Park.

Most of my outdoor adventure is done in provincial parks, not National ones. Although I only have a mere three checks on my list as of now, I am more experienced than your average person with being in the wilderness. I have a few multi-day hikes and a 300km kayak trip planned for this summer. Although none of these are in National Parks it’s still a few more credentials and experiences learned to help with my National Park Journey.  This year I think I should be able to cross off Yoho and Elk Island.

The most I can do right now is just keep adventuring and documenting the areas that are closer to me, so in the future I can try getting sponsored to continue on. I am one of the most interesting, intelligent, creative and capable people I know of, so I’m really shooting for eventually trying to convince some network or production company to make a documentary or reality show about me. Might be a long shot, but would definitely speed up my 25 year timeline and help my $250,000 budget problem 😉

Here’s some photos of my first three checks (Banff,Jasper,Waterton)  As a photographer I obviously have to document the travels, and as an adventurer I have to spend at least a few days in each location and accomplish a difficult hike/bike/climb/paddle ect. in order to be able to check it off the list. For all future checks I will have a separate blog post with a new photo and story about the park and the adventure that was had, so keep watch on here and who knows, maybe in 5 years you can just watch me on Cottage Life.

Lance Edwards-Hampton


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