Good Secluded Backpacking/Camping spots near Vancouver, BC. - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 05-10-2018, 02:11 AM Thread Starter
Hittin' the Trails
 
Join Date: May 2018
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Question Good Secluded Backpacking/Camping spots near Vancouver, BC.

Me and my GF finally got all the gear required to go backpacking for 1-2 days. Now we need to choose a place where we will go.

We would like to find a place maybe 2-3 hour drive from Vancouver that has easy access for a vehicle where we can park the car. And then we would like to hike maybe 2-4 hours until we find a nice place to setup our tent and stay there for 1 or 2 nights until we decide to hike back to our car and leave.

Some people suggested going to a campground like Golden Ears but for what I read usually campground are pretty crowded and we want to camp somewhere where there is no people around.

Is it a common thing to go to a provincial park campground, leave the car and then instead of camping next to the car, go hiking and finding a secluded spot far away?

We don't care about camping in the bush or in a provincial park. Our main concern is where would we leave the car. Since we don't really want to leave the vehicle by itself for a few days on a random road.

Any suggestions where we can go and where can we park the car? Also I must say we are pretty new to this backpacking world so we would like to find a hike that are not very hard/advanced.

Many thanks!!!
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 05-10-2018, 12:59 PM
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Two come to mind that should not have snow:
Stein Valley, drive to Lytton, take the ferry across the Fraser and hike up the valley.
Gold Creek, in Golden Ears Park. Here you would park at "Gold Creek Parking" near North Beach campground. There are no designated campsites up the valley but lots of flat sites on sand bars, etc.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 05-11-2018, 02:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martin View Post
Two come to mind that should not have snow:
Stein Valley, drive to Lytton, take the ferry across the Fraser
ferry's shut down right now due to high water levels
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 05-11-2018, 02:50 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martin View Post
Two come to mind that should not have snow:
Stein Valley, drive to Lytton, take the ferry across the Fraser and hike up the valley.
Gold Creek, in Golden Ears Park. Here you would park at "Gold Creek Parking" near North Beach campground. There are no designated campsites up the valley but lots of flat sites on sand bars, etc.
We are looking into Gold Creek, seems an easy place to try for the first time.

They say there are 4 designated wilderness camping areas: (Alder flats, Viewpoint Beach, Panorama Ridge and Half Moon Beach) but they don't show in any map what are the delimitation of the camping spots.

How do we know if we are in a "legal" place to camp or not?
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 05-12-2018, 10:53 AM
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Alder flats/ Panorama Ridge are designated camping spots, up the west canyon trail and away from Gold Creek. There is a nice lookout spot on the trail where you can see Gold Creek far below. You could also park in the east canyon lot, take the east canyon trail up to the connector bridge. This takes you over Gold Creek to the west canyon trail and on up to Alder flats. May be some snow up there still. Panorama Ridge is further up on Golden Ears Mt and there will be snow. Viewpoint and Half Moon are on the east canyon trail, both with privies nearby. Bring tp. I don't think Viewpoint is an official camping spot but certainly people pitch a tent there no problem and it's a nice area right on Gold Creek. Expect day people, especially on the weekends. It's only about 6 km from the parking lot. Another 6 or so km from Viewpoint is Half Moon Beach and campsite. You won't find a mob there! The trail past Viewpoint is not well maintained and you may find the creek is overflowing in places but you'll have some privacy. These hikes are not difficult except past Alder flats going up Panorama Ridge- that is strenuous!
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 05-15-2018, 03:27 PM
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I saw a ton of decent spots along the Soo River up the FSR. Road isn't too bad, could be done up to about the 14km marker in a 2WD car.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 05-16-2018, 03:02 PM
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subscribed, this seems like a very interesting thread
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 12:16 AM
Dru
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The question of "where can I find a secluded campsite close to Vancouver with nobody else around" comes up a lot.

This is one of those questions that anyone who has a good spot won't ever answer online because then the internet will ensure that everyone else can find their secret spot.

In short, those who know don't say, and those who say either don't know or just like to ruin it.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by adrenaline681 View Post
How do we know if we are in a "legal" place to camp or not?
If it's in a Park, it generally illegal to camp outside of specified campsites. On crown land it's up to you. Trails tend to be better in parks though.

If you camp wild remember you have an immense responsibility to leave the space better then you found it. That means packing everyting out, burying your human refuse. Most of all that means if you MUST make a fire you do it only with deadfall, and remove any trace of a fire. Considering that wild fire risks are rising, it's best not to make fires for awhile. I would recommend doing a trip with a club first to learn the ins and outs of backcountry camping.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 02:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adrenaline681 View Post
We are looking into Gold Creek, seems an easy place to try for the first time.

They say there are 4 designated wilderness camping areas: (Alder flats, Viewpoint Beach, Panorama Ridge and Half Moon Beach) but they don't show in any map what are the delimitation of the camping spots.

How do we know if we are in a "legal" place to camp or not?
I've attached a map showing the four designated backcountry camping sites in Golden Ears, and clayriley's descriptions are pretty accurate with a few notes.
Click image for larger version

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  • Alder Flats is about 6km up the West Canyon trail, or roughly the same or slightly more up the East Canyon trail and across the bridge. There are a handful of cleared tenting sites here, and it looks like all the snow has melted from earlier in the year. Do NOT camp on the wooden helicopter landing pad (do not burn it for firewood either), and try to avoid the unofficial tenting spots right beside the creek because it's been causing damage to the riparian area. There is an outhouse nearby, just up the hill from Alder Flats.
  • Panorama Ridge is the exposed ridge leading up to the summit of Golden Ears. This is another 4 or 5 km up past Alder Flats. I believe they added some wooden tenting platforms last year, alongside the emergency shelter building. A seasonal outhouse used to be helicoptered up every year, but I think there was talk of building a permanent one there...? At this time of year, it's mostly covered in snow.
  • Hikers' (Viewpoint) Beach is about 4.5km up the fairly moderate East Canyon trail, and is a rocky beach area on Gold Creek. This area gets busy on the weekends, especially if it's sunny. There are no marked tenting sites, but pretty much anywhere on the beach is probably fine. There's an outhouse nearby, just a short distance back on the East Canyon trail.
  • Half-moon Beach is another rocky beach further up Gold Creek, about 10km up the East Canyon trail. It also has an outhouse nearby, and is much less busy than Viewpoint Beach. However, the trail is somewhat unmaintained, and you'll need to skirt blowdowns and streambeds to reach it, but it's reasonably well flagged. Note that in early April it was only possible to get about 6.5km up the trail due to high water levels in a streambed.

There are a few other spots that you could easily set up a tent, but they're not officially designated. Campfires are not permitted at any of the backcountry camping sites, but propane stoves and such are allowed.

Golden Ears Explorer
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