Vast beauty. Colourful history. Ecological diversity. And the chance to strike gold!
Camp close to Cariboo gold rush towns. Ride the range with Chilcotin cowboys. View grizzlies, moose and goats near Bella Coola. Come see why the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast is a Land Without Limits. No limits on the views. No limits to adventure. No limits on the life-changing experiences. (And, happily, no need to reserve months in advance!)
CARIBOO (‘oo’, not ‘ou’)
In 1862, thousands of early B.C. settlers navigated the treacherous currents of the Fraser River to find their fortune in the Cariboo gold fields. Now, it’s campers and RV enthusiasts who are the lucky ones. Even luxurious, high-end guest ranches – the kind with beautifully peeled log cabins and gorgeous quarter-horses tied to the hitching post – are welcome here.
Canim (means “canoe” in the local First Nations language) Lake lies just 35 kilometres northeast of 100 Mile House (or “Hundred Mile” as the locals call it). Wildflower-carpeted meadows, waterfalls and ancient petroglyphs can be found nearby.
The haunting bird-call of the loon across a still mountain lake is as Canadian as camping gets, and could there possibly be a better place than Loon Lake to experience it? (And loons aren’t the only birdlife; bald eagles, hawks, swans, woodpeckers and even herons are regular visitors). Campgrounds and cabins abound on this clear, deep lake. Lots of boats, canoes and kayaks to rent, with even paddle boats for the kids.
From Google Earth, Quesnel Lake looks like an ocean fjord dropped from the sky. Carved by glaciers that ground their way out of the Cariboo Mountains eons ago, Y-shaped Quesnel Lake splits into multiple arms. Camping options range from plush RV resorts to hidden forest service road sites, with tons of secret beaches and coves to boat or kayak to.
CHILCOTIN: From Cattle to Canyon:
West of Williams Lake, the Chilcotin Plateauis a huge expanse of grasslands, forest, rivers and lakes that teems with wildlife. Viewed on a map, both Anahim and Nimpo Lakes might seem like remote way-points on the road west to Bella Coola. Yet Anahim Lake is surprisingly accessible, with daily air service direct from Vancouver International Airport (YVR). Nearby Nimpo Lake is often called the Float Plane Capital of the World. RV camping is popular at any of the fishing resorts in this vast region; indeed, getting a waterfront site is virtually guaranteed.
The Chilcotin plateau ends where the Coast Range mountains form an impenetrable barrier of rock and ice. Highway 20 traverses Tweedsmuir Provincial Park, jumping off spot for limitless backcountry adventures. Here, grizzly bears, bearded mountain goats and massively-antlered moose outnumber humans by a thousand to one – maybe more. Camping in and around Bella Coola differs greatly from the high rolling hills of the Chilcotin, as sheer granite walls, tumbling glaciers and dense forest hems in one of B.C.’s most enchanting valleys and the Great Bear Rainforest.
From Winnebagos to Westphalias, the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast welcomes campers in all sizes and shapes!