EDITORIAL – Answer to Peterson Creek Park safety is common sense, not money

(Image: CFJC Today)

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

TWO THINGS STAND OUT about the rescue of a hiker in Peterson Creek Park yesterday.

One is that we don’t know whether said rescuee was male or female, because the police haven’t old us.

The news release carefully avoids the question, referring to the hiker only as a “person” or as “they.” This takes the concern for privacy that so preoccupies our local RCMP detachment to a new level.

More importantly is how this hiker got him or herself into a pickle in the park that required the resources of police as well as fire and rescue to get him or her out of it.

Rescuing people in the park is, by no means, uncommon. It happens every year. Without details other than that he or she slipped and ended up on a ledge, it would be unfair to lay blame on this particular hiker for his or her miscalculation but it does raise a point about safety.

The trails in that park are a joy to experience. In summer the foliage is lush and thick with butterflies along the creek.

One has to be careful, though, or you can end up going for a tumble. As one progresses up toward the falls, the rocky trail can become unstable, especially in spring.

I once observed with trepidation a young man demonstrating his sureness of foot as he clambered around the rock face at the edges of the falls.

But it’s when folks take on the park from the top end that they seem to get in trouble. So, what’s the answer?

The City could pour a couple of million dollars into widening the trails, complete with railings and better signage.

However, I have an idea. How about caution? How about understanding the challenges of the park and being careful?

Let’s not ruin the naturalness of the experience with all kinds of barriers. The answer isn’t money; it’s common sense.

I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.

Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at

About Mel Rothenburger (8961 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

4 Comments on EDITORIAL – Answer to Peterson Creek Park safety is common sense, not money

  1. I’m afraid that you are asking for something that people cannot get on ” rollback “. Their parents , and their teachers are to blame, because no one teaches Common Sense anymore. It seems that common sense is fast being lost to our detriment.

  2. Jennie Stadnichuk // March 1, 2021 at 4:37 PM // Reply

    Caution is what’s needed wherever you walk or hike. Peterson Creek is fine as it is with its adventurous trails and beauty – all practically downtown. My children and I hiked there often without any problems. They were aware that carelessness often results in injury that can be painful as well as take time to recover! I once had a fall on a sidewalk downtown. I had hiking boots on, the sidewalk was bare of snow, a little wet though. Well how did I have the accident that sprained my wrist? There was a tiny patch if ice that remained from the dripping of an awning. Even though I thought I was being careful, accidents can happen. But being on a downtown sidewalk is very different from hiking Peterson Creek.

  3. It definitely is a dangerous world out there, especially in Kamloops. The winter, the steep terrain, the Coquihalla, If we could inculcate a great deal of caution and good sense to many we could easily reduce our taxes.

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