The closure of the border with the United States has forced many Canadians to overwinter north of the 49 th parallel rather than in the heat of the American South. Without being able to bask in the sun, they came to settle in southern British Columbia where the temperature is milder.
Normally, about 50,000 recreational vehicle users cross the border each winter, says the Canadian Camping and RV Council. However, this year the situation is quite different, which benefits Canadian campsites.
On a small island nestled in the Fraser River, a campsite is already full. Unlike previous winters, the 118 full-service sites at Fort Camping Langley are occupied, says Customer Service Manager Marilyn Stone.
When the Prime Minister asked Canadians to come back to Canada in March, several people across the country wanted to spend their quarantine at this campsite and, before leaving, they reserved a site there for the winter.
At this time of year, Doug Overholt, 74, is expected to be in Palm Spring, Calif. Even though he considered jumping on a plane to the South despite the pandemic, considerations relating to his health insurance made him change his mind.
Instead, he spent the winter at Fort Camping surrounded by Canadians who, like him, would like to be in Uncle Sam’s country.
I have satellite TV and radio and everything I need. They have amazing internet service here , he says.
The clubs are not open, the shared toilets are no longer. They are in their RV and their home. They are not supposed to mix with other people at the park , he explains.
This year, Connie Axelson and her partner plan to celebrate the holidays in peace at the Langley Campground as they usually entertain their friends in Arizona this time of year.
I’m looking on the bright side, we know it could be worse. We have a great house, good neighbors and a beautiful environment. We would like to be in the south, but until they remove the restrictions and the vaccines are available, we will stay here , she said.