Marlis Butcher, the Canadian Park Bagger

Her Goal

In July 2019 Marlis accomplished her goal of visiting all 47 National Parks of Canada. Of course Park Canada continues to create new parks, with the latest, Thaidene Nene, being announced in August 2019. Additionally, in 2021 Parks Canada was mandated to create 10 new national parks in the next 5 years. Marlis’s quest continues.

Hoping to inspire others to appreciate the country and visit the parks, Marlis shares her adventures in the national parks in her book Park Bagger – Adventures in the Canadian National Parks, published by Rocky Mountain Books in 2021.

Her Passions

Marlis Butcher is an environmental conservationist, a writer, and a photographer.  She is an accomplished wilderness adventurer, Nordic skier, backpacker, kayaker, canoeist, cyclist, and world traveller.

Marlis is a lifetime member of the Bruce Trail Conservancy (BTC), protecting and stewarding land along the Niagara Escarpment, a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. She served 9 years on the BTC’s Board of Directors, and 5 years as the Toronto Bruce Trail Club’s Trail Development and Maintenance Director. She still maintains the trails and volunteers on the Club’s board.

Marlis’s work is published in Canadian Geographic Magazine, CBC News online, The Weather Network, The Explorers Club’s “Far Afield” magazine, Bruce Trail Magazine, Canadian Encyclopedia,  her neighbourhood’s “Village Voice” newsletter, and in various wilderness outfitters’ brochures and travel blogs.


Royal Canadian Geographical Society (RCGS)

RCGS logoMarlis is a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. Founded 1929, the RCGS’s mission is to make Canada better known to Canadians and to the world. The Society’s vision is to help Canadians chart a successful future by fostering a greater understanding of Canada’s geography — its diverse human and physical landscapes — as well as the changes affecting its people and the environment. 

Marlis volunteers as an Ambassador for Canadian Geographic Adventures, a collaboration with a variety of travel partners in efforts to bring experiences off the pages of Canadian Geographic magazine and into the field through Ambassador-led, custom-curated travel experiences. Canadian Geographic Adventures engages with Canadian people, places, frontiers and conversations that are meaningful and connect us with learning and a sense of our place in the world.


Explorers Club (TEC)

Marlis is a Fellow of The Explorers Club. Founded in 1904, TEC is an international organization that promotes the scientific exploration of land, sea, air, and space by supporting research and education in the physical, natural and biological sciences.

Marlis volunteers as the Membership Director of TEC’s Canadian Chapter. She assists members through TEC procedures and she provides guidance to potential new members and associates on the application and sponsorship process.

In 2017 Marlis co-chaired the Lowell Thomas Awards Dinner (LTAD), themed “The Changing Face of the Arctic”. This was the first time that LTAD had been held outside of the United States.


Royal Botanical Gardens (RBG)

Marlis joined the board of Directors of the Royal Botanical Gardens in 2021. The RBG is the largest botanical garden in Canada, a National Historic Site, World Biosphere Reserve, and registered charitable organization with a mandate to bring together people, plants and nature.  The RBG’s  mission is to dedicate their expertise in horticulture, conservation, science and education to connect people, plants and place for the purpose of nurturing and preserving healthy growing life on our planet.


Her Professional Designations

Marlis’ professional designations include Chartered Director, Chartered Professional Accountant, and MBA. Marlis combines her passions and skills in the work and projects she takes on.