By Russ and Tiña De Maris
Many U.S. boondockers are familiar enough with some of the alternative sources of finding boondocking sites in the Lower 48. Forest Service maps and BLM-provided information can yield a wealth of spots to check out. But if you’re traveling north of the border and into Canada, things can get a little sketchy.
If your travel planning includes a visit to Canada’s western-most province, British Columbia, here’s a great site to help you find “alternatives” to costly and over-populated provincial campgrounds. The Ministry of Forests is roughly analogous to the U.S. Forest Service, and is broken down by provinces. So, along comes a website from B.C.’s Ministry of Forests that helps you “drill down,” and find a camping site on the lands they manage throughout the province. Called Recreation Sites and Trails BC, you’ll find it a valuable resource.
Using a selectable menu, we asked to see available camping in the province on these forest lands and immediately got back a list of over 200 campgrounds. We did a random sample of over 20 sites and found that half of them were free, and the most expensive per-night charge was $13. Mind you, that was a sample – if you find some higher, please don’t send me pitchforks in the mail!
Another good feature about the site is the ability to pick and choose features you’d like to have where you go. For example, if you’re into kayaking, there’s a click-box for that feature that narrows down those 200 and some odd sites to only those that are suitable for paddling your own canoe.