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Wilderness camping

Wilderness camping is allowed year-round when accessible, but no facilities are provided. Travelers will come upon traditional campsites where impacts have occurred and campers are encouraged to use these locations. 

  • When toilets are not available, bury human waste at least six inches in soil and 30 metres from water. 
  • To ensure drinking water is safe it must be boiled for at least five minutes. 
  • Register a trip itinerary with friends, check in and check out. 
  • When practical, use impacted campsites but otherwise practice Leave No Trace camping ethics. 
  • If you have a fire, build it on rocks, or remove sod, have fire, then replace sod. 
  • The conservancy is a non-mechanized area.

Campfires are allowed, however, visitors should check with the forest service or at the park trailheads to see if fires bans are in effect. For this backcountry area, use dead trees on the ground as wood supply for fires. 

At traditional campsites, use established fire-rings. In pristine areas, build fires on rocks or dig a hole, scatter the fire remnants and replace the sod ring when you move on. Please practice “Leave No Trace” camping.

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There are unimproved horse trails in each main valley and routes into many of the side valleys and over passes. Rivers may be impassable during flood season, usually until the end of July. There are no bridges on the east side of the park and hikers will have to ford creeks.

Visitors should be able to read maps and be capable of route finding. Because this is a wilderness conservancy, the park has no facilities or marked trails and is not regularly serviced. Visitors should be self-sufficient and proficient in backcountry travel practices. For more information please see the trail information page.


There are refreshing swimming opportunities at this park in alpine lakes and streams. There are no lifeguards on duty.


There are canoeing and kayaking opportunities in this park.


Anyone fishing or angling in British Columbia must have an appropriate licence.

Wildlife viewing

There are abundant populations of animals including elk, deer, goats, black and grizzly bears, wolverines, martin, beaver, coyotes, wolves and even the occasional caribou. There are also at least 90 species of birds. There are many wildlife viewing opportunities however, be aware that during the summer many animals take refuge at higher elevations.

Pets on leash

Dogs in backcountry parks must be under control at all times. Backcountry areas are not suitable for dogs or other pets due to wildlife issues and the potential for problems with bears.

Horseback riding

Horseback riding and multi-day pack trips are permitted on the east side as defined by the height of land along the Purcell Mountains. Trails are unimproved, uncut and historical structures such as old bog bridges exist. Use extreme caution while crossing these structures and be prepared to cut out the trail. There are traditional horse camps along most trails. Please use established sites or practice no impact horse camping.


Although most alpine opportunities are remote the rugged back bone of the Purcell’s offers many climbing opportunities.


Hunting is permitted in the park during open hunting seasons. Firearms may be carried by persons with a BC hunting licence during an open hunting season. Horse assisted hunting trips are allowed on the east side of the conservancy during open seasons.

Winter recreation

There are winter recreation opportunities for extended backcountry ski touring. Snow machines and aircraft are not allowed as the conservancy is a non-mechanized area.