Parks and Environment

The mandate for the Parks Program is to maintain and build Bowen Island Municipality parks, trails, beaches, beach accesses, pedestrian right‐of‐ways, playing fields, greenways and open space in a manner that contributes towards a sustainable community.  Between May and August, two temporary Parks Crew employees provide the bulk of the maintenance with additional support from contractors and the core Public Works Crew.

Parks, Trails and Beaches

There are three classes of beach access on Bowen Island as follows:

In general, Class “A” beaches are high traffic beaches that are equipped with both washroom facilities and garbage containers and are designated with signage. These beaches are also wheelchair accessible. During the summer months they are maintained at least twice per week ensuring clean facilities and unobstructed access to the sea. 

Class “B” beaches are well used beaches that are typically frequented by neighbourhood residents and are designated with signage. During the summer months these beaches are maintained weekly by municipal staff.

Class “C” beaches are legal public access routes which may or may not be physically accessible. These beaches may be used by neighbourhood residents but not as frequently as Class “B” beaches. These beaches are not maintained by municipal staff and are not designated with signage.

To view a map of Bowen Island Parks, Trails and Beaches please click here. We are currently updating our trail map. The map provided is the most current version available but is subject to change.

Metro Vancouver and Bowen Island Municipality both operate a number of parks throughout Bowen Island.

Dogs on main beaches

Dogs are not permitted on Bowen Bay Beach, Tunstall Bay Beach and Sandy Beach during the months of July and August.

Beach Water Quality

Six Bowen Island recreational beaches are sampled throughout the swimming season (mid-May through early September) to determine compliance with the Canadian Recreational Water Guidelines. Two samples per beach area are analysed by Vancouver Coastal Health and geometric means are calculated.  

When the geometric mean of the samples from a particular beach area exceeds 200 E.coli bacteria per 100 millilitres of sea water sample or in the event of a known hazard or spill, an assessment will be made to determine the possible health risks and the most effective approach to protecting the health of recreational water users.

The provincial Medical Health Officer may require Bowen Island Municipality to post a warning sign at a particular beach indicating that the water is contaminated and is unsafe for swimming. Vancouver Coastal Health’s website regarding bathing beach counts is an informative and reliable reference.

Beach “closures” are generally not based on individual results but rather geometric means of water samples taken from a particular swimming beach area over the past 30 days. 

2016 Snug Cove Tunstall Bay Sandy Beach Bowen Bay Pebbly Beach Mothers Beach
May 10 15 85 <5 <5 <5 <5 5 <5 9 36 30 15

May 17

115

65

<5

5

180

155

<5

100

<5

<5

55

36

May 24 120 170 20 5 10 30 155 35 <5 5 40 50
May 31 50 35 <5 5 9 9 <5 50 5 50 180 185
June 7 1700 255 5 <5 25 9 <5 <5 10 40 1500 300
June 14 340 450 <5 20 435 95 15 64 15 14 230 200
June 21 364 400 9 60 750 120 140 59 10 5 5 460
June 28 95 218 5 20 64 118 5 15 260 225 30 86
July 5 335 268 <5 5 827 230 5 27 95 40 82 225
July 12 40 95 9 5 82 32 <5 <5 <5 40 60 55
July 19 1650 2550 <5 5 260 250 20 5 50 25 130 185
July 26 723 536 <5 15 275 1150 <5 5 41 45 30 150
August 2 185 350 10 5 550 40 5 1200 5 15 18 145
August 9 50 50 <5 <5 200 500 <5 5 <5 30 25 32
August 16 180 7 <5 <5 5 50 23 <5 5 10 45 45
August 23 <5 <5 10 <5 800 10 5 <5 305 5 15 32
August 30 45 130 <5 5 91 165 <5 <5 <5 <5 105 9
September 6 205 23 5 <5 15 5 <5 <5 5 14 64 20

Numbers in this chart represent the number of E. coli bacteria per 100 millilitres of sea water sample. Two samples are taken from each of the swimming beach sites.

Environment

Heron Policy

Heron Nesting Activity Report

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