Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area
Guide

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Introduction

There are plenty of reasons why Elks Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area is a premier camping destination for RV vacationers. Firstly, the park features a thundering waterfall and offers one of the most fantastic salmon fishing experiences on Vancouver Island. Moreover, the beautiful forest trails within the park make the park a hiker’s paradise, not to mention the great swimming opportunities available in the park’s waters. Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area has to be your next RV holiday destination.

Located along Highway 28, about 3 km (2 miles) west of Campbell River, this 10.5 sq. km. (4 sq. mile) provincial park offers quiet riverside camping at 122 sites available for RVs and tents. RVs and trailers up to 32 ft can be accommodated within the campground and reservations are accepted. Some of the campsites are available on first-come first-served basis.

Dubbed one of the best parks in the “Salmon Capital of the World”, world class fishing opportunities are available in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area. Beautiful birds and wildlife are also present in the park, so you may want to pause to enjoy the sight of these creatures on your visit. Swimming, cycling, and mountain biking are some other ways you can have fun at the park.

Elk Falls Provincial Park was established in 1940 while the Protected Area was established in 2013.

RV Rentals in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area

Transportation in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area

Driving

Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area is located along Highway 28, about 3 km (2 miles) west of Campbell River, British Columbia. As the park is a simple drive-in park, it is easy to access by RVs, trailers, and other motorized vehicles. Local roads within the park connect the campground, the day use area, and other points of interest in the park. There are no driving restrictions within the park.

Parking

Five parking areas are available within Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area for vehicles and rigs. One of the parking lots is located within the campground and offers additional parking for rigs besides the available space at each campsite. Overnight parking is available for RV campers.

Public Transport

There are no direct public transportation services to Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area.

Campgrounds and parking in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area

Campsites in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area

Reservations camping

Quinsam Campground

There are 122 vehicle-accessible campsites available at Quinsam Campground in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area. All the campsites can accommodate RVs and tents. RV/trailer length limit at the campground is 32 ft, but if you have a larger RV, you should contact the park ahead to find out if there is space available.

None of the campsites in the campground is equipped with RV hookups, however, picnic tables, firepits, water taps, garbage stations and washrooms are available in the campground. You’ll also find playground, telephone and a sani-station at the campground. Access to the day use area and Quinsam River from the campground is easy.

71 campsites are available by reservation in the campground, while 51 campsites are available on first-come first-served basis only.

First-come first-served

Alternate camping

Seasonal activities in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area

In-Season

Fishing

Freshwater fishing opportunities are abundant in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area on Quinsam River and Campbell River. If you prefer saltwater/ocean fishing, then you should visit the town of Campbell River to exploit the opportunity. Regardless, you will find a wide variety of fish species in the park ranging from steelhead, to dolly varden and cutthroat. Freshwater sculpin and chinook are also commonly caught by anglers in the park, in addition to three spine stickleback and sockeye salmon.

Wildlife Viewing

A wide variety of wildlife species are available in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area and they are commonly seen in different parts of the park. You’ll be able to see deer, cougars and bears in the park, and take pictures of them if you so wish. You should look out for squirrels, shrews, minks, and some other small mammals as you hike the trails in the park too. Just west of the campground, a beaver dam is present.

Hiking

Elks Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area features four trails that add up to 6 km (4 miles) and offer a variety of hiking opportunities to RV campers. These trails include Quinsam River Trail, Beaver Pond/Kingfisher Trail, Canyon View Trail, and The Millennium Trail. As you hike these trails, look out for beavers and marsh birds, beautiful waterfalls, and the resplendent forest trees, particularly Douglas fir. You are advised to remain on the designated trail paths and not take shortcuts for your own safety and the preservation of plant life and soil structure. Take care to avoid contact with Cow Parsnip and Giant Hogweed on the trails.

Off-Season

Birding

Bird lovers and bird viewing enthusiasts enjoy watching the various birds in Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area, as the park is home to many bird species. From great blue herons, to killdeer and glaucous-winged gulls, you’ll be to watch them as they fly around in the park. Look out for starlings and golden-crowned kinglets as they are also abundant in the park. So, with or without your binoculars, you will have a fun time watching the birds that call this park home.

Swimming

Swimming is a popular pastime among RV campers at Elk Falls Provincial Park and Protected Area. Even though there are no lifeguards on duty at the park, the fun does not stop. All it means is that RV campers exercise caution while swimming. Campbell River, Beaver Pond and Quinsam River are waters available for swimming in the park, but RV campers often prefer Quinsam River as it is located by the campground and the day use area. Swimming holes are even present in the river near the falls at the day-use area.

Cycling

Cycling and mountain biking opportunities are available at the park and RV campers who enjoy riding will enjoy these activities to the fullest. If you wish to cycle within the park, you’ll be able to do so only on the roadways. However, if mountain biking is what appeals to you, you can use the Pumphouse trails that connect all the way to the Snowden demonstration forest trail network. The best access to pumphouse trail from the park is from the logging road bridge over Campbell River.

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