The world-renowned Bowron Lake Canoe Circuit is a 116km chain of waterways and connecting land. The full circuit takes between six and 10 days to complete. For a shorter trip, the West Side of the circuit can be paddled in two-to-four days.
The circuit is in Bowron Lake Park, a wilderness area on the western slopes of the Cariboo Mountain Range. It is recommended only for people with some previous wilderness canoeing experience.
This page provides help with booking a multi-day canoeing and camping trip in the backcountry. For information on booking a reservation at the Bowron Lake frontcountry campground, visit our frontcountry camping page. Look on this page for the following information on the Bowron Lake Canoe Circuit:
- How to make a reservation
- Fees you must pay to secure your reservation
- How to change or cancel your reservation
- How to make a reservation for a larger group
For full details of our reservation policies, download the reservation services policies and terms [PDF].
The Bowron Lake Canoe Circuit is extremely popular. Reservations usually sell out the day they become available. We advise you to make your reservation as soon as you can.
Reservations for the Bowron Lake Canoe Circuit open for the 2023 season on December 1, 2022, at 7 am PT.
- Anyone wishing to use any part of the Bowron Lake Canoe Circuit must make a reservation in advance
- Your reservation includes use of the circuit and campsites along the way, for a specified period
- Anyone over 16 years of age can make a reservation for the Bowron Lake Canoe Circuit via camping.bcparks.ca
- Reservations can also be made by calling 1-800-689-9025 toll-free from Canada and the US or 1-519-858-6161 internationally
- Paddlers must attend one of our orientation sessions, which are held in the registration centre at 9 am and noon daily
- If you do not attend an orientation on your first reserved day, your reservation is cancelled without refund
- To use the circuit, you must bring or rent the essential equipment outlined in our pre-trip information booklet [PDF]
- When booking your reservation, you must specify the ‘named occupant’ who will be your official reservation holder
- This named occupant can be yourself or another person, but they must be present when your party arrives and throughout your stay
If the named occupant cannot be present throughout your stay, your reservation must be re-booked with an occupant who can be present. The named occupant may be asked to show ID during your stay to keep your reservation valid.
- A maximum of three people total can travel in any single canoe (four people may be allowed if two of them are small children)
- Camping is allowed only on assigned tent pads or established campsites at campgrounds along the circuit
- Tent pads are a maximum of four square-meters and can accommodate two tents and four people in total
- For parties of seven or more people, you must make a group reservation (see groups, below)
- Reservations cannot be transferred or sold to another party, and any attempt to do so will lead to cancellation, without refund
For more information on booking an adventure in the backcountry, see the backcountry camping reservations page.
All fees must be paid in full when you make your reservation. There are two types of fees:
- Camping fees, which pay for your campsite and use of the circuit
- Transaction fees, which help us maintain the reservation service
Fees for the Bowron Lake Canoe Circuit
|Camping fees||• $60 per person for the full circuit |
• $30 per person for the West Side circuit
|Transaction fees||• $18 per canoe|
Camping fees do not include equipment rental, which must be paid for separately, if needed. Tax is included in camping fees, but tax is added to transaction fees. If you change or cancel your reservation, there will be additional fees (see changes and cancellations, below).
For more information on camping fees and transaction fees, see the camping fees page.
Changes and cancellations
- You can change or cancel your reservation via camping.bcparks.ca or by calling 1-800-689-9025 (1-519-858-6161 internationally)
- Camping fees will be refunded if you cancel your trip more than 28 days before your departure date (subject to our cancellation policies)
- If you cancel your trip with 28 days’ notice or less, camping fees cannot be refunded
- Transaction fees, including change and cancellation fees, are non-refundable
Group reservations can be booked for parties of between seven and 14 people. Because space is limited, and overall demand has increased significantly, only one group departure is available per day.
Your group must attend a 9 am orientation session before departing. The orientation session at noon is not available for group reservations.
Canoeing groups must:
- Camp only in designated groupsites
- Complete a fixed seven-night full circuit or three-night West Side circuit
If someone drops out before your trip, making your group less than seven people, group policies still apply. Additionally, you are still required to pay fees for at least seven people.
Each canoeing group must have a designated leader. The designated group leader is responsible for registration and the behaviour of the entire group.