Recreation Site & Trail Description

Recreation sites and trails provide many recreation opportunities on Crown land outside of parks and settled areas.

They enable recreational experiences generally within an integrated resource-management setting. This means the land base is managed for multiple uses, which may include forestry, cattle grazing, mineral extraction, oil and gas exploration, recreation, fish and wildlife management and watershed protection.

While visiting recreation sites and trails, you can expect to encounter a number of different land-management activities across the landscape.

Recreation Sites

Recreation sites are used for many different purposes. The majority provide a simple, rustic camping experience. Generally located in remote areas and accessed by gravel forestry roads, recreation sites provide only basic facilities, such as fire rings, picnic tables, outhouses, and, where appropriate, boat-launching ramps. Potable water and electricity are not available. At a limited number of recreation sites with on-site operators, supervisory services are provided. 

Campsites with Fees

These sites are managed through partnerships with recreation groups, community organizations, First Nations, private citizens, local governments and forest companies. Camping fees are charged to pay for the services provided by the agreement holder. Services may include supervision, daily maintenance, and facility/structure maintenance. 

Campsites without Fees

These sites are managed through partnership agreements or maintenance contracts. No fees are charged for the services provided because the agreement holder can reduce or recover the costs by alternative means (e.g., volunteers), or the B.C. Government covers the cost of the maintenance contract.

Typical Amenities

Amenities at recreation sites and trails vary from location to location. Typical amenities and services at a site may include:

  • Campsites
  • Fire Rings
  • Trails
  • Day-use areas
  • Picnic tables
  • Toilets
  • Firewood sales
  • Boat launches
  • Outhouses
  • On-site supervision
  • NOTE: potable water and electricity are not available at any sites.

Recreation Trails

B.C.’s recreation trails are used for many different purposes (hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, ATVs, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling). They range from primitive, single-track paths through dense forest to wide rail trails with high-quality tread  surfaces.

Many trails are set in spectacular natural settings, and in addition to providing access to beautiful destinations (e.g., recreation features), they also provide users with enjoyment and a sense of fulfilment and accomplishment along the journey. Many historical and heritage trails trace the footsteps of our forbearers and remind us of important events in B.C.’s history.

This extensive network of recreation trails gives B.C. the capacity to develop as a world-class outdoor tourism destination. The B.C. Government is developing a Recreation Trails Strategy to ensure that our recreation trails provide sustainable opportunities for all types of users – non-motorized and motorized. Updates on the strategy will be posted on this website.

As with recreation sites, some recreation trails have user fees while others are free of charge. Trails with fees are managed under partnership agreements whereby the partner charges for maintenance services such as trail grooming and brushing.