The yurt is built on the original site of legendary local Eugene Croteau’s guest lodge, which was built in the 1930s.
Strathcona Provincial Park is the oldest provincial park in BC and attracts hikers, skiers and paddlers to its extensive trail network. Group campsites, such as the newly installed site at Croteau Lake, are popular among larger, out-of-region parties seeking backcountry experiences. However, lack of suitable group amenities was limiting the range of visitors the park could accommodate.
Led by the Strathcona Wilderness Institute, this project involved design and construction of a multi-use yurt at Croteau Lake. The shelter provides a safe, dry and versatile space that can be reserved for groups of up to 25 people and includes unique specifications to withstand the severe snow loads of Strathcona Park. The project also included interpretive signage linking to the site’s unique history and namesake Eugene Croteau.
The Croteau Lake shelter, opened in the spring 2018, encourages longer park stays and attracts a wider range of groups, unable to be hosted previously. The project has seen a stead increase of users, both from within and outside of the region, increasing demand for accommodation, hospitality and other goods and services in gateway communities. Continued enhancements to the site have also since been added (a deck at the Yurt’s front, a solar power lighting system and a host tent pad). A host program began in 2019 to help meet and inform groups about the site and Strathcona Park.