Spray paint was discovered at Hot Rocks. (Special to The News)

Spray paint was discovered at Hot Rocks. (Special to The News)

Popular Maple Ridge summer destination vandalized

Rocks discovered with spray paint along South Alouette

During his morning walk Monday, Doug Stanger was dismayed to discover graffiti sprayed on rocks along the Alouette River.

A person or persons used bright orange paint and sprayed hearts and other symbols along the rocks at Hot Rocks, a popular summer destination for locals.

He made the discovery at around 9:10 a.m. on April 12, with his wife and a couple of neighbours who walk together daily.

“We go seven days a week,” he said of his walking group. The graffiti wasn’t there Sunday morning and, he added, another of his neighbours was at the location Sunday afternoon at about 2 p.m. and there was still no graffiti.

So, he suspects, it was sprayed on the rocks sometime after that.

Stanger said the area is not immune to graffiti, but he hasn’t seen any this year until now.

“The hot rocks is such a beautiful area and it’s a very favourite spot for people all over Maple Ridge and beyond to go and use, sitting on the rocks,” he said.

READ MORE: ARMS concerned about trash in the Alouette

Stanger, treasurer with Alouette River Management Society, is also concerned that the industrial spray paint that was used will slowly wash off into the South Alouette, which is a very important salmon spawning river.

At the moment, he noted there would not be salmon spawning there, but there would be some trout.

So, he sent a picture to the city parks department to see if there is any safe way to remove the paint without contaminants getting into the river.

Another local resident, Beth Polovick, was also upset after seeing the orange paint on the rocks.

“As landowners for 43 years, backing onto Hot Rocks and the Alouette River, we have seen a massive increase in the amount of people visiting the river,” said Polovick in a letter to The News.

“If you see acts of graffiti vandalism, please record it.

“Maybe if these vandals know that we are watching and trying to protect our little part of paradise , they will think twice about defacing our beautiful natural part of the world,” she said.

The City of Maple Ridge issued a statement saying a crew had been dispatched to the Hot Rocks to determine what will be required to remediate the site to its original condition while protecting the watercourse.

The crew will also be collecting any evidence at the site to turn over to the RCMP to determine if the people responsible can be identified and held accountable for this vandalism.

“The Hot Rocks site has been a favourite place for First Nations people and later settlers. The Maple Ridge Museum and Archives has archive photos of the earliest settlers to the community using this space in the summer for recreation,” explained Valoree Richmond, director of parks and facilities with the city.

“It is very disappointing to see this beloved natural space vandalized in this way,” added Richmond.

READ MORE: Have fun, but keep river clean, says City of Maple Ridge

Polovick was happy to see a city crew removing the paint on Tuesday, April 13.

However, she added, there are other concerns she has about the South Alouette.

She noted that when Golden Ears Provincial Park is at capacity during the summer, people end up at the Hot Rocks, Davidson’s Pool, and Maple Ridge Park.

“There is no crowd control here!!! In the summer there is wall to wall, (bank to bank), tubers floating down the river. We need more police presence and eyes on this area of Maple Ridge from April to November,” she declared, adding that people haul in supplies to the area, but unfortunately, don’t haul them out.

Stanger is also concerned about tubing in the South Alouette.

“It’s been absolutely chaotic here in the summer months,” he said. Visitors park across the street from his house and he sees lots of open alcohol and empty containers being thrown into the bush or the river.

Then,”they buy the cheapest tubes so that they usually puncture in the river and they leave them in the river or throw them up on the banks and it’s a huge clean up mess.”

“It’s a huge problem trying to get the message out every year about responsible tubing,” he added.


Have a story tip? Email: cflanagan@mapleridgenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

maple ridge

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Dan Joseph shared a sunset picture looking out over the Fraser River. What does the sunset look like for you today (Mother’s Day). (Special to The News)
SHARE: What does the sunset look like for you tonight?

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon

Hikaru Ozduman won Outstanding Effort at the 33rd annual British Columbia Japanese Speech Contest. (SD42/Special to The News)
Maple Ridge student earns award for speech – in Japanese

The 33rd annual British Columbia Japanese Speech Contest was held virtually in March

Have an opinion you’d like to share? Submit letters to the editor through our website, via email or the postal service. (Heather Colpitts/Black Press Media)
LETTER: Maple Ridge man suggests those who flout COVID rules forego taxpayer health-care

People following rules to help end pandemic frustrated by those who don’t, letter writer says

Ken Nunes is one of hundreds who venture out onto Alouette Lake in Golden Ears Provincial Park when the sun comes out. “Here’s how I see Maple Ridge,” he said. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Nice weather draws people to the water

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. Statistics Canada says the country's crime rate ticked up again in 2018, for a fourth year in a row, though it was still lower than it was a decade ago. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of May 9

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

RCMP are looking for information on an alleged shooting attempt near an elementary school in Smithers March 10. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News/Stock)
UPDATE: Man killed in brazen daylight shooting at Vancouver airport

Details about the police incident are still unknown

Pieces of nephrite jade are shown at a mine site in northwestern B.C. in July 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Tahltan Central Government MANDATORY CREDIT
Indigenous nation opposes jade mining in northwestern B.C.

B.C.’s Mines Act requires operators to prepare a plan to protect cultural heritage resources

Vancouver Giants celebrated a Justin Sourdif goal Saturday night in Kamloops. Giants dropped a 3-1 decision to Kamloops, a game that clinched the 2020-21 B.C. Division banner for the Blazers. (Allen Douglas/special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Vancouver Giants drop 3-1 decision to Kamloops

Third-period rally should have come sooner, said coach of Langley-based team

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. Statistics Canada says the country’s crime rate ticked up again in 2018, for a fourth year in a row, though it was still lower than it was a decade ago. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
IHIT investigating after man killed in Burnaby shooting

Police looking for more information on fatal shooting

After Bobby Henderson apologized online for his comments to a Toronto reporter, the Langley Rivermen announced that he was no longer team coach and general manager and in fact, had ‘parted ways’ with the franchise in March. (file/Twitter)
Former Langley Rivermen coach and GM apologizes for comments to Toronto reporter

Bobby Henderson blames stress due to the pandemic for his ‘disparaging’ remarks

The body of Brenda Ware, 35, was found along Highway 93 in Kootenay National Park on Thursday, May 6, 2021. (RCMP handout)
RCMP ask for tips after woman’s body found in Kootenay National Park

Brenda Ware was found along Highway 93 in the park, 54 kilometres north of the town of Radium

Most Read