May 18, 2015 11:13 pm
Updated: May 20, 2015 8:20 am

Fort Langley ‘oTENTik’ tents appeal to new generation of campers

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WATCH: Fort Langley Historic Site offers camping opportunities for families

Parks Canada officials hope a new kind of camping shelter will draw more people into the great outdoors.

So-called “oTENTik” tents are available at camping sites like Fort Langley and are fitted with comfy mattresses, a table, fridge, dishes and utensils. There’s also electricity, a little heater and even Wi-Fi.

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This will be the third season for the oTENTiks at the Fort Langley National Historic Site, and already most weekends through the summer are booked.

“I had 150 per cent higher booking rate on opening day than we did last year,” said Stephen Dicks of the Fort Langley Historic Site.

“It’s a great balance between the folks who want to go out camping and those who aren’t quite so familiar or comfortable with that activity. This kind of gives you the amenities of a cabin and the feeling of a tent with a little bit more comfort.”

The concept is so popular Parks Canada is doubling the number of oTENTiks to 238 nationwide in an effort to get people to try camping.

“The demographics of Canada are changing quite a bit,” said Dicks. “We have an aging population, we have families coming from everywhere in the world to live here in this country and they may not be used to what we consider to be a more traditional Canadian experience.”

The new form of so-called “glamping” may help boost the number of campers in B.C.

A new survey found that, surprisingly, British Columbians are among the least likely to sleep out in Canada’s great outdoors.

According to the Canadian Camping and RV Council, just 19 per cent of B.C. residents say they are regular campers. That compares to 34 per cent in Alberta and 30 per cent in Saskatchewan. Among all the provinces, only Ontario has a lower rate of camping.

-with files from Elaine Yong

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