Imagine slogging your way back down a trail after a weekend of backpacking, eager to get back to the hallmarks of civilization: hot showers, beer, and nachos. And imagine the trailhead comes in sight! You quicken your pace, eager to get to your waiting vehicle only to discover… flat tires? Severed brakes? And you’re 23km up a forest service road and out of cellphone service range to call for help?
If you’re leaving your vehicle overnight in an alpine or sub-alpine zone, you need to porcupine-proof it.
Porcupines are nocturnal creatures who like to chew rubber. Nom nom nom. Tires? Yum. Brakes? Yes, please! Radiator hoses? What a treat!
Protecting your car is easy. Wrap chicken wire or hardware cloth around the bottom of your vehicle and secure it with sticks and stones, making sure there are no gaps for porkies to crawl underneath.
Popular parks like Kokanee Glacier Park have rolls of chicken wire available at the trail head. But if you’re not sure, best bring your own. Some things just aren’t worth taking the risk.