On This Page
Mabel Lake Provincial Park
About This Park
Well off the beaten track, nestled in a beautiful mountain setting are the quieter, sandy beaches of Mabel Lake Provincial Park.
Lush forests offer a pleasant retreat from the more crowded urban centres. The park’s sandy shoreline is backed by a cool forest of hemlock, red cedar and birch, in sharp contrast to the drier ponderosa pine/Douglas-fir forests to the west. Squirrels often visit the campsites and painted turtles can be seen at Taylor Creek. Deer, black bear and even moose can be seen occasionally as well as a variety of birdlife and water fowl.
Mabel Lake is a fisherman’s destination park as several local fishing derbies are held in the park each year. It is not uncommon to find a handful of fisherman enjoying the peaceful spring months, fishing off the beach. Opportunities for rainbow trout are available here year-round.
Temperatures are warm in the summer but rarely extreme, making this a great campsite for those who prefer a cooler locale than the Okanagan Valley. The natural setting and access to a 35 km long lake make this a popular destination for all ages.
Know Before You Go
- Mabel Lake can experience sudden weather changes. Boaters are reminded to find shelter in bays along the lakeshore in times of gusty winds.
- The lake bottom drops off steeply from the beach. Use caution.
In the spring and fall, there is a lot of wildlife activity in the park.
Please exercise caution and keep a safe distance.
All campsite and group site reservations must be made the BC Parks reservations system. When reservations are not available, all campsites function as first-come, first-served.
Campsite reservations are accepted and first-come, first-served sites are also available.
Group Campsite Reservations
Please note: Take Hwy 6 east from Vernon to Lumby. Follow signs in Lumby turning north onto Mabel Lake Road that follow the Shuswap River for 36 kilometres on paved road through a picturesque landscape of farmland and ranches and 1 kilometre of gravel road to Mabel Lake and the campground. The total distance from Vernon is 60 kilometres.
Nature and Culture
- History: Mabel Lake Provincial Park was established in 1972. The lake was named after Mabel Charles, daughter of a Hudson’s Bay Company manager during the late nineteenth century.
- Conservation: The area’s climate and landscapes mark the dramatic transition from the Okanagan Basin to the Quesnel/Shuswap Highlands. To the west, the slopes of the Thompson Plateau are covered in Ponderosa pine and Douglas fir, while on the east side of Mabel Lake the wetter and steeper slopes of the Shuswap Highlands grade into the Monashee Mountains. For visitors accustomed to the dry Okanagan forests, the cedar and hemlock of Mabel Lake clearly indicate the greater rainfall in this valley.
- Wildlife: Squirrels often visit the campsites and painted turtles can be seen at Taylor Creek. Deer, black bears and moose can be seen occasionally as well as a variety of birdlife and water fowl.
- Management Planning Information
- There is currently no approved valid management plan for this area. Management plans are prepared as soon as practicable, subject to available resources and the ability of key planning partners to participate.
Activities Available at this Park
Pets on Leash
Facilities Available at this Park
Some facilities in the park are wheelchair-accessible.
There is a group camping area at this park. Access is through the Monashee Campground but well separated from it by forest allowing for privacy. Taylor Creek flows beside the area. There is an open gravel parking area next to the 80 square metre wood frame/log picnic shelter. There are picnic tables under the shelter and a large fire pit beside it. There is space in an open grassy area for approximately 10 tents and in an adjacent gravel area surrounded by trees for a further 10 tents or several RVs. The area has two taps and two flush toilets. Reservation information »
Youth group camping charges per night are $1/person (6+), with a $50 minimum and $150 maximum. Read the Youth Group policy about Criteria for Youth Groups.
Regular group camping charges per night are the base rate for the site, which is $80.00/group site/night, plus $5/adult (16+, minimum charge for 15 adults), plus $1/child (6-15). Children under 6 are free!
This park has a large day-use/picnic area extending from the Trinity Campground to the boat launch. The lawns are level, open and spacious, providing the opportunity for a variety of games. There are 10 picnic tables amongst the cottonwood trees that separate the lawn from the beach and provide some shade. The tables have a great view of the lake and the adventure playground. Two flush toilets and a tap are located next to the playground. Five more tables with three fire rings are found nearer to the boat launch, also surrounded by open, spacious lawn. There is a gravel parking lot with 45 spots. Two pit toilets and a tap are located in a small patch of shrubs just off the parking lot.
Depending on water levels, it is possible to walk the beach the entire length of the park from the boat launch to Taylor Creek. Taylor Creek braids and forms a delta as it enters the lake. Sandy floodplains form underwater as the light sand settles out of the stream in miniature example of the geologic process that formed many parts of the Okanagan Valley.
Pit or Flush Toilets
Vehicle Accessible Camping
This park offers 114 vehicle-accessible campsites in three campgrounds: Trinity, Monashee, and Taylor Creek. The main gate located at the park entrance is locked between 11pm and 7am during the operating season. The main gate is open to the boat launch, but the road is not maintained during the off-season.
The Trinity Campground consists of sites 37–84 arranged in three loops and includes four double sites. The roads are single lane gravel. This is the first campground encountered when driving into the camping area. The loops are set in a thick forest of cedar and hemlock that provide shade and privacy with a forest floor carpeted in moss. The loops are separated by open grassy areas and linked by a trail that runs the length of both campgrounds. The sites consist of medium to large gravel spurs that have been raised and levelled. The abundance of trees may make parking difficult for some large RVs.
The Monashee Campground consists of sites 1–36 arranged in two smaller loops and includes eight double sites. The sites are generally smaller than those in the Trinity Campground and the forest is thicker allowing for more privacy. There are more double sites but these are also smaller and perfect for trucks with campers. The sites are gravel but not raised.
The Taylor Creek Campground consists of sites 85–114 arranged in one small loop. The sites offer good privacy under a heavily forested canopy and are the furthest from the lake.
Campsite reservations are accepted at this park and first-come, first-served sites are also available.
There is no phone or cell service in the park and the closest store for snacks and
other small items is right next to the boat launch. For more services,
Lumby is the closest community.