Gray Provincial Park
The main entrance to Wells Gray Provincial Park is located approximately
10 km (12 miles) north-west of Clearwater
on Clearwater Valley Road.
There a few ways you can enter Wells Gray Provincial Park. One is
to take Hwy 5 either from Kamloops
in the south, or from Tête
Jaune Cache in the north. Access to the main section, called
the Corridor Area, of the park can be made through the open year-round
Clearwater Valley Road at Clearwater. Another section of the park
at Murtle Lake is accessed by the summer-use only road at Blue
River. If you happen to be at 100
Mile House, take the road to Canim Lake and follow the signs
to Mahood Lake which is on the western side of the park.
The main attractions in Wells Gray Provincial Park are the vast
number of waterfalls, crystal clear lakes, rivers, and creeks found
throughout this wilderness setting in British Columbia's highest
park of the Cariboo Mountains. Other geographical landscapes include
open valleys, woodland forests, fields of long grasses and wildflowers,
steep rugged mountains, snowcapped glaciers, and the ancient remains
of a volcanic lava flow. The park is also well known for its world-class
hiking trails, kayaking, and canoeing routes into some of British
Columbia's most remote lakes and rivers where you can find stunning
landscapes, unique beauty, and vast opportunities for wildlife watching.
The park is abundant with species that include sheep, cougars, wolf,
deer, moose, Mountain goats, lynx, wolverine, Black and Grizzly
bears, plus up to at least 200 species of birds and a large selection
of small mammals including squirrels, rodents, mink, fisher, and
The park is often referred to as the "Waterfall Park"
and has 39 officially-named waterfalls of decent size with Helmcken
Falls being the most famous as it is Canada's fourth highest waterfall.
It is located about 32 km (20 miles) north of the park boundary
near Clearwater. Other accessible falls from the road include Dawson,
Spahats, and by short trail, Sticta. Some waterfalls must be accessed
by wilderness hiking trails that will take you through rugged terrain
offering panoramic views of some of the highest peaks in the Cariboo
Mountains, such as the one to Pyramid Mountain.
With the appropriate license, the angling opportunities found in
the park include Rainbow trout in the Clearwater and Azure waterways,
plus in Angus Horne Creek and Barella Creek. Kokanee, Rainbow, and
Lake trout, whitefish and Burbot are present in Mahood Lake.
Redspring Picnic Site
Wells Gray Provincial Park has a number of day-use and picnic grounds
to choose from. A favourite called Redspring is located on the way
to Clearwater Lake. Here you are situated next to the Clearwater
River just upstream from Helmcken Falls at the 51.3 km (32 miles)
mark. Just remember to watch yourself and children near the river's
edge as there can be a very dangerous torrent at any time, and as
with all BC Parks, there are no lifeguards present.
For vehicle-accessible campgrounds, the park has a number available
for you to choose from. The most popular ones can be found in the
Corridor Area near Clearwater Lake where you can find Clearwater
Lake and Falls Creek Campgrounds available on a first-come, first-served
basis. If you would like to get a reservation, Mahood
Lake, a great spot for families located on the south-western
side off Hwy 24, offers a number to choose from. Mahood Lake is
the only lake in the area that is not glacier fed, offering better
swimming opportunities. Just remember, as with all provincial parks
in British Columbia there are no lifeguards present, and caution
must be observed around all children and non-swimmers.
A sani-station/dump is available for RVs operating during the collecting
season in the summer across from the north end of Falls Creek Campground.
Other conveniences and attractions include a number of fresh-water
taps, picnic areas, wheelchair-accessible areas, viewpoints, flush
and pit-toilets, a children's adventure playground at Mahood Lake,
plus numerous hiking and mountain biking trails.
The park has a number of remote wilderness campgrounds located throughout
the whole area with camping done at your own risk. The camping is
generally situated on Azure, Clearwater, Murtle, and Mahood Lakes.
A lot of the area in and around the wilderness campgrounds is full
of dead trees caused by the Mountain Pine beetle epidemic. Caution
must be exercised when camping next to possible dangerous trees
in the bush, especially around the marine campgrounds sites.
Gray Park Infocentre
For more information regarding Wells Gray Provincial Park, make
sure you visit the Wells Gray Information Centre located in Clearwater.
The staff are very friendly and have lots of information regarding
road closures, camping sites, and trail conditions. The Infocentre
is conveniently located right at the corner of Clearwater Valley
Road and the Yellowhead Hwy 5. For more information or current operating
hours telephone 1-250-674-3334 or 1-250-674-2646.
Just remember if you are enjoying the Wells Gray Provincial Park
and the countryside around British Columbia, please remember are
bears found everywhere. Try to avoid the rivers during heavy salmon
spawning times unless you feel comfortable with bears around and
take the usual precautions. There is also the possibilities of encounters
with wolves or cougars so please play it safe.
If the park campgrounds are full when you arrive at Wells Gray Provincial
Park and you want to stay the night or a few days, there are lots
of other alternatives next to the park or in nearby Clearwater.
A favourite is Wells Gray Golf Course & RV Park, and it is located
near the main entrance to the Corridor Area. Another great RV spot
called Dutch Lake Resort and RV Park is well-situated near Clearwater
and offers watersport activities for kids and adults alike.
on Wells Gray Park
Wells Gray Park