Callaghan Lake Provincial Park
Guide

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Introduction

Featuring stunning views to the dormant Mount Callaghan volcano and some of the best year-round backcountry recreation in British Columbia, Callaghan Lake Provincial Park is an RV lover's paradise. Located in the upper Callaghan Valley to the west of the resort town of Whistler, Callaghan Lake Provincial Park was founded in 1997 and expanded in 2000. Since the expansion the park is made up of 6649 acres (27 sqkm) for visitors to explore and enjoy.

One of the major attractions of Callaghan Lake Provincial Park is the untouched wilderness that includes considerable glacial till and slide materials that are visible across the lake. Some of the beautiful sites you can expect to see include talus slopes, cirques, hanging valleys, waterfalls and flat rock benches. The park is also home to the 2010 Olympics nordic sports venue known as Whistler Olympic Park. This attraction is a very popular destination for visitors of all ages and is open for fun during all seasons. Other popular recreational activities within the park include fishing, hiking and canoeing.

For those wanting to stay at the park, you will be happy to know that Callaghan Lake Provincial Park has fee free primitive camping available during the snow-free months of the year. The campground is located at the end of the park road close to the lake. Peak season at Callaghan Lake Provincial Park runs from May until September.

RV Rentals in Callaghan Lake Provincial Park

Transportation in Callaghan Lake Provincial Park

Driving

Callaghan Lake Provincial Park is located in south-east British Columbia and is around 12 miles (20km) west of the popular ski town of Whistler. The park has one entry and exit point that is in a fairly easy to reach location directly off Sea to Sky Highway.

Services and amenities to Callaghan Lake Provincial Park are also located very close by as Whistler has many facilities. Here is where you will find the closest shopping opportunities to the park, so stock up on supplies if you need anything before you head up the mountain. Other towns close by include Garibaldi (around 20 miles or 33 kms away), Squamish (around 26 miles or 42kms away) and Pemberton (around 30 miles away or 48kms). Vancouver is the closest major city to the park and can be found 70 miles (113km) to the south.

Accessing the park used to be very difficult as the road was hardly maintained so only 4x4 vehicles could navigate the terrain. Now the park roads are very well maintained and should be very straightforward as the road is very wide. The road into the camping area (which is located at the end of the park access road) is also kept in very good condition. During the winter there is heavy snowfall in and around the park so you may have trouble with access if you plan to visit during this time. If you do plan on visiting the park during winter make sure you call the park in advance to confirm that you will have RV access.

Parking

There is plenty of parking available for visitors to Callaghan Lake Provincial Park.

Public Transport

Unfortunately there are no public transport options that will take you to Callaghan Lake Provincial Park.

Campgrounds and parking in Callaghan Lake Provincial Park

Campsites in Callaghan Lake Provincial Park

Reservations camping

First-come first-served

Callaghan Lake Provincial Park Campground

Callaghan Lake Provincial Park has a small campground with six sites available for fee-free primitive camping during the summer months of the year. The campground is quite rustic and is a throwback to the past with no electric or sewer hookups available for visitors.

The amenities in the campground are limited, however there are pit toilets and water collection points available for you to use. There are no garbage facilities or dump station within Callaghan Lake Provincial Park Campground so make sure that you take everything with you that you brought to the campground.

The campground is located at the end of the park road close to the lake and there are no reservations taken as it is first come, first served only. Due to the remoteness of the camp ground you should still be able to find a camp site even during the peak summer months. The campground is open from May until September.

Alternate camping

Seasonal activities in Callaghan Lake Provincial Park

In-Season

Fishing

Callaghan Lake will also be a happy place for those who love to fish. The lake gives visitors the change to do some easily accessible subalpine fishing from the banks of the lake or from a watercraft such as a canoe or kayak. Common species caught in Callaghan Lake include trout and char. If you are looking for more fishing opportunities we recommend taking the time to explore the other lakes in the park. Before you cast a line you must have an appropriate fishing license.

Boating

Callaghan Lake in Callaghan Lake Provincial Park is stunningly beautiful and perfect for anyone wanting to do some paddling. There is a small boat launch that you can use near the campground for you to easily launch your canoe, kayak or paddle board and you can spend the day exploring the waters. If you are looking for more canoeing opportunities there are also many smaller lakes that you can check out during your stay. There are no guarantees that watercraft rental will be available so make sure you bring your own if you want to enjoy the waters.

Whistler Olympic Park

Whistler Olympic Park was originally built in 2010 to host the nordic events at the Olympic Games. Now Whistler Olympic Park is an adventure attraction for people visiting Callaghan Lake Provincial Park all year round. There are many different things to do in Whistler Olympic Park, including climbing the ski jumps to see a view that has been coined "top of the world." Other activities at the park also include electric assist mountain biking, summer biathlon, disc golf and sightseeing. Whistler Olympic Park is open daily for summer adventures until September.

Off-Season

Wildlife Viewing

No matter what time of the year you visit the park there will be some great wildlife viewing opportunities. A variety of wildlife exists within the park and surrounding areas, including the bobcat, cougar, coyote, mink, Douglas’ squirrel and weasel. The park is also a popular place for people to bear watch with both black bear and grizzly bear sightings common. For more information on wildlife viewing opportunities available during your visit contact the park office.

Winter Recreation

As you could imagine winter recreation is a very popular pastime in the park due to the Whistler Olympic Park facilities. The park has an extensively marked snowshoe trail system along with some fantastic cross country skiing opportunities. If you are looking for groomed trails there is a private ski operation within the park that have around two and half miles(four km) of groomed trails that you can use for a fee. If you plan on having some fun in the winter make sure you bring your own equipment as there is no guarantee that rentals will be available.

Hiking

While Callaghan Lake Provincial Park doesn't have a lot of formal hiking trails due to the steep terrain and mostly forest covered park there is access to numerous backcountry routes in the park. If you want to explore the edge of the lake you will find many small unmarked trails that will take you on adventures near the lake. There is also a rough marked trail leading to Conflict Lake and Ring Lake for those who are looking for a bigger challenge.

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