On Jan. 12 as Cedar and I were leaving Underhill Park on our daily circuit of One Mile Lake, we were stopped by a Village of Pemberton Bylaw Officer who informed me that the Village was going to start “cracking down” on off-leash dogs at the lake.
Obviously the VOP is not aware of who actually uses One Mile Lake Park, so I decided to keep track.
By far, the most active and prolific users of the One Mile Lake trail system are dog walkers and their off-leash buddies.
Between Jan. 13 and 31 (inclusive) Cedar and I were around the lake 18 times. Our route usually takes us from Underhill Park, across the bridge, along the creek, along the newly dug channel, around the lake and back to Underhill Park (a figure eight).
Over the course of 18 days, during the roughly one hour it takes us to cover this route we have encountered 72 people and 81 off leash dogs. Of all these people, only six were without dogs. I only counted people I met face-to-face, coming at me from the opposite direction. I did not count the many people and dogs I saw ahead of me, behind me, or across the lake from me who were going in the same direction as I and who I didn’t meet face-to-face, nor did I include Cedar and I in the daily count.
If you extrapolate these numbers to a whole day it gives you a rough idea of the numbers involved.
Clearly it is the dogs and their people who use the One Mile Lake trail system and if it weren’t for us the VOP would have spent a whole lot of money on a park that was hardly used at all.
If Whistler can have five designated off-leash areas as well as three time-sensitive off-leash areas, surely the Village of Pemberton can come up with something better than the miniscule doggy beach.
I strongly urge the Village of Pemberton to make the whole One Mile Lake park a designated off leash area.