Adventure and travel writing

Kayaking British Columbia

Adams Lake, BC

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Location: Located about 30 minutes from Hwy 1 and Shuswap Lake.  Adams Lake Provincial Park is small and off the beaten path. 


Launch: Boat launch available at the Adams Lake Provincial Park.


Parking: Limited free parking at the Provincial Park.


Facilities: Pit toilet available near the parking area.


Drinking water / Food: No running water or food close by so come prepared.
 

Notes:  Beautiful, quiet lake with minimal boat traffic. The lake is used for logging so be aware of logs, log jams and logging equipment. Not a lot of places to stop due to steep, rocky shoreline however the Provincial Park has nice beaches to hang out on. We covered the southeast end from the Provincial Park which covered 17 km. North of the Provincial Park there is lots of remote lake to discover and would be a multi-day paddle to cover the whole north end of the lake. 

Columbia Lake, BC

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Location:  Columbia Lake is on the East side of Hwy 95. just South of Fairmount Hot Springs


Launch: We launched from the South end of Columbia Lake at Tilley Memorial Park on the East side of the lake North of Canal Flats.  


Parking:  $3.00/person for parking and park access.  


Facilities:  Public toilets with running water.


Drinking water / Food:  No food but there is a water fountain at the bathrooms.


Notes: Beautiful spot and well worth the few dollars to get into the park.  IT was very quiet when we were there in May but I imagine this may be a busy spot in peak times.  The launch is off of a nice fine stone beach. 

Little Shuswap Lake, BC

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Location: Just south of Shuswap Lake off Hwy 1 with the town of Chase at the far south end. 


Launch: Memorial Park in the town of Chase has a nice beach and launch area that runs beside the pier.


Parking: Free Parking at Memorial Park.  


Facilities: Public washrooms with flush toilets and outdoor shower to hose off after being on the beach are located in Memorial Park.


Drinking water / Food: Running water available on site and food close by.


Notes: Circumnavigating the lake would take about 4 hours and roughly 20km. The lake can be reached by traveling down the Little River that connects Shuswap Lake to Little Shuswap Lake. Minimal boat traffic and not a lot of areas to stop for a break, however there is a nice public area and beach on the north end of the lake with pit toilets and picnic benches. 

Little Shuswap River, BC

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Location: Joins the Shuswap Lake with the Little Shuswap Lake off Hwy 1 just wet of Blind Bay.     


Launch: We got permission to launch from Little River Boat World marina on the Shuswap Lake end of the river.  We would suggest you launch from the north end of Little Shuswap Lake and head up the river first.  


Parking: Free Parking at Little River Boat World with permission.  


Facilities: Washrooms with flush toilets at  the marina.


Drinking water / Food: We got drinks and ice cream at the marina.  Bring food and drinks as there is not a lot around.


Notes: We paddled down the river first and we HIGHLY recommend that you start by paddling up the river and have a gentle ride home.  There is quite a current going up the river but we found that if you stick very close to the edge it is manageable.  But be prepared for hard paddling to get around some obstacles and take advantage of the calmer bays to take a much needed rest.   

 

Shuswap Lake, BC

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Location: Large lake system just off Hwy 1 around Siccamous, Salmon Arm and Sarrento, BC. The lake can be reach from so many areas but we stayed in Shuswap Provincial Park right on the water.


Launch: Public area and boat launch available in day use area of Provincial Park as well as many beach areas for guest staying at the park. 


Parking: Free parking in day use area.


Facilities: Public bathrooms available at both day use area and campsite area.


Drinking water / Food: Water available on site and food available close by.


Notes: You can spend endless days exploring the different branches and areas of the Shuswap Lakes. From the Provincial park you can easily navigate around Copper Island and up and down the shores. The water is warm for swimming in the summer months and the lake is known for houseboating and powerboats.

St. Mary Lake, BC

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Location: About 20 minutes southwest of Kimberly, BC on St. Mary Lake Road.


Launch:  Boat launch on south end of lake.


Parking: Free parking close to boat launch.


Facilities:  Pit toilet available near boat launch. 


Drinking water / Food: No running water or food close by so come prepared.


Notes: Quiet serene mountain lake with cold water for swimming but minimal powerboats due to logs and underwater hazards. The north end has a beautiful swampy area where you can kayak through the swamp grass. The St. Mary River also opens up on the north end of the lake and you can kayak a fair way up the river to get some extra paddling time in. About 1.5 hours to circumnavigate the lake plus whatever time is spent on the river.

Wasa Lake, BC

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Location: About 25 min northeast of Kimberly, BC on Hwy 93.


Launch: There are numerous public access beaches along the northeast end of the lake. Including one boat launch with limited access.


Parking: Free parking at all the public beach areas.


Facilities: Public washrooms available with running water. 


Drinking water / Food: Running water not suited for drinking so bring your own water. Food close by but nothing on site. 


Notes: Busy lake with lots of people and power boats on it. Water is warm for swimming and lots of public access areas on the northeast end if you want to stop for a break. About 1.5 hours to circumnavigate the lake.

Windermere Lake, BC

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Location:  In Invermere just off Hwy 95.


Launch: James Cabot Provincial Park.  Turn left at the first set of lights after cross over the river.  Launch form a nice public sand beach.


Parking:  Lots of free parking in the James Cabot Provincial Park parking lot.


Facilities:  Public bathrooms with running water.


Drinking water / Food:  Water fountain located at the bathrooms and food located close by.


Notes: Beautiful public sand beach that may get busy in high season.  As per its name, the lake can get windy at times but beautiful view of the surrounding mountains and lakeside homes.