Errington, British Columbia Canada (PressExposure) December 23, 2006 -- When Patrick Walshe's father passed away 14 years ago, the Parksville biologist knew he'd find a way to continue the work of one of the country's finest naturalists. After nearly a decade and a half of working to preserve the environment, Walshe has launched what promises to follow in his father's footsteps: his nature and heritage tour company, Coastal Revelations.
"My father taught that nature only reveals its deepest secrets to those who examine her closely. That's what people will find when they come along with Coastal Revelations: a compact wilderness experience and the close-up view. One way we do this is to use a spotting scope which magnifies our normal vision by 20-60 times."
Operated from Walshe's home base in Errington, Coastal Revelations offers scheduled and customized wilderness and cultural adventures in the Central Vancouver Island area. Walshe bases his company's tours on the interactive principles learned in his Interpretation Canada training. Coastal Revelations doesn't just tell people the workings of the wilderness. They show, illustrate, and illuminate.
"There are so many weird and wonderful sights right in Oceanside and the surrounding area, from skeleton shrimp in tidal pools to secretive marsh birds. Where else can you see ocean wonders, giant rainforest trees, and alpine wildflowers, all in the same day?" says Walshe. "People don't often know where to look to get beyond the superficial experience of these places and discover the story behind the scenery and animals. We can help them with that."
A biologist by training, Walshe has worked in research and education. His love of the outdoors was fueled by a boyhood spent in a provincial park, where his father, Shan Walshe, was the head naturalist for 20 years. Combining his background in science with training in nature interpretation, Walshe launched his company in July of 2005. Already he is running regularly scheduled tours from Tigh-Na-Mara Resort and subcontracting for local groups. In addition to these alliances, Walshe is interested in working with others in the hospitality industry to create a marketing network and tour packages, enhancing the overall visitor experience. Website cross linking is a good start he says.
Philosophically, Walshe believes in building the quality of the economy rather than pushing the idea of infinite growth. If he can make a business that doesn't consume a lot of energy or natural resources and still build the economy of the local area, he'll be meeting his goal.
"I'm a practical environmentalist at heart. I believe that an essential way to preserve the wild places that we love is to create an economy that doesn't consume them. We want to bring people to the wilderness in a way that isn't destructive. The aim of nature interpretation is to provoke interest and curiosity and relate the theme to something in the lives of the audience and to the big picture. Our hope is that they come away from the experience with a deeper understanding of nature's interconnections. That's the revelation."