Camping fees going up at some BC Parks
Camping rates are rising in BC Parks March 15, including at some East Kootenay and area parks.
Over the past five years, BC Parks has invested approximately $60 million in park facilities. The increases come after years of capital projects aimed at attracting young families, improving accessibility, and providing new opportunities for people to experience and enjoy BC Parks.
To continue to maintain high service levels and provide new recreational opportunities at B.C. provincial parks for a growing number of visitors, the provincial government is raising some camping fees as of March 15.
The changes affect approximately half of the provincial parks across B.C. where fees are charged for various forms of camping. These changes support enhanced facilities and services at provincial parks across the province, so visitors continue to enjoy the best experience possible in B.C.’s beautiful parks.
The majority of affected parks will see only a $1 or $2 per night increase. In some parks, fees will be decreased or eliminated altogether. For example, several camping and backcountry sites in the Kootenays, such as at Arrow Lakes Provincial Park, will no longer have fees. Select group camping sites will see a $1 to $2 per party increase.
An additional $410,000 is expected to be generated this year for B.C.’s protected areas systems. All of the revenue from increased fees will be put back into operating and maintaining the parks system.
“The appeal of British Columbia’s treasured parks is reflected in the growing number of visitors who come from around the province, and the world, to enjoy them. We are ensuring BC Parks continue to offer a high level of service, as well as enhanced facilities, for the public to enjoy now and for many generations to come,” stated Mary Polak, Minister of Environment.
User fees at BC Parks are generally lower than those of most private campsites in the province, and competitive with public sector campgrounds in other jurisdictions.
There are 1,029 provincial parks, recreation areas, conservancies, ecological reserves and protected areas in B.C., covering more than 14 million hectares or approximately 14.4% of the provincial land base.
B.C. provincial parks receive over 21 million visits each year.
In 2015, more than 158, 000 reservations were made through Discover Camping – an increase of nearly 19% from 2014.
East Kootenay Provincial Parks and camping rates
Akamina-Kishinena – backcountry camping $5 a night.
Bugaboo Provincial Park $5 to $10 a night for camping.
Dry Gulch Provincial Park rates are staying the same at $25 a night.
Elk Lakes Provincial Park – backcountry camping $5 a night and cabins $25 to $50 a night.
Kikomun Creek Provincial Park rates will remain $35 a night for front country sites and the group camping rate is rising by $20 to $120 a night.
Lockhart Beach (north of Creston) is staying the same at $23 a night.
Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park camping rates run from $5 to $10 a night and cabins $20 to $50.
Mount Fernie Provincial Park camping fees are going up by $2 to $30 a night.
Moyie Lake Provincial Park camping rates are climbing by $1 a night to $33.
Norbury Lake Provincial Park rates are holding steady at $20 a night.
Premier Lake Provincial Park camping rates are remaining at $25.
Top of the World Provincial Park’s backcountry rates remain at $5 a night and cabins run from $15 to $30 a night.
Wasa Lake Provincial Park rates are climbing by $2 a night to $30.
White Swan Provincial Park’s Home Basin Campground rates are climbing by $1 a night to $23 and Inlet Creek is $20; backcountry sites are $5 a night.
Yahk Provincial Park camping rates are up $3 a night to $21.
Parking remains free in all provincial parks. For a complete list of campgrounds and updated fees, please visit bcparks.ca.
Lead image: White Swan Lake in White Swan Provincial Park southeast of Canal Flats. Ian Cobb/e-KNOW images