Lake access fight pits fishing club against billionaire owner of Douglas Lake Ranch
More from Randy Shore
Original posted in the Vancouver Sun
Published on: January 8, 2017 | Last Updated: January 12, 2017 9:04 AM PST
A decades-long dispute over the right of British Columbians to have access to lakes and fish on privately held property will finally be considered by the Supreme Court of B.C. in Kamloops on Monday.
Nicola Valley Fish and Game Club member Rick McGowan was one of many anglers who fished Minnie Lake, Stoney Lake and others on the Douglas Lake Ranch until Stoney Lake Road was abruptly gated and locked in the late 1970s by the Douglas Lake Ranch. The ranch has since built a fishing resort at Stoney Lake.
Local anglers still occasionally walk to the lakes to fish to help legitimize their claim to access, and McGowan has been arrested twice for fishing at another nearby lake on private land.