We store our trailer at Pacific Playgound over the winter. The basic storage rate provides for full hookups and includes 2 free nights per month. There are two excellent walks from the campground, both spectacular on a crisp fall day. It takes a little over 2 hours to walk from the campgound to the end of Miracle Beach Provincial Park and back.
Located on Holden Lake south of Nanaimo, this forested park is popular with local residents, who mainly come here to explore the extensive trail system. The marsh area at Hemer Provincial Park is also a favourite destination for bird watchers and ornithologists. A viewing platform over the marsh, approximately 1 km from the parking lot, provides the opportunity to observe various types of ducks, Trumpeter swans, Bald eagles and turkey vultures, as well as beavers.
Approximately 11 kilometres of easy walking trails weave through the park along Holden Lake and through the marsh areas. The trails are forested, primarily with mature coastal Douglas fir, red alder and big-leaf maple. Trails are not marked but are easily identifiable and well maintained. Hemer Park provides day-use opportunities at Holden Lake, a peaceful setting for paddlers, boaters and anglers.
The Kleskun Hills rise 100 meters above the surrounding plains and support the largest remaining intact native plant community in the Peace Country. The eroded landforms remind you of southern Alberta and the badlands along the Milk or Red Deer Rivers. There is a pioneer museum here and a small campground with a hot shower. The walk can be divided into 2 loops with the northern loop featuring the landforms and the southern loop featuring the plant communities. This park is a real gem and well worth a visit or two. For more information visit the Alberta Parks website
This short loop around the campground in the Queen Elizabeth Provincial Park takes just under 45 minutes. Start by parking near the boat launch or playground and then walk along the lakeshore for 12 minutes to the group camping area. Walk around the perimeter of the group area until you pick up a trail to the left that leads into the forest. Fight your way through the clouds of mosquitoes to the viewpoint over looking the small marsh then return to the road near the entrance to the campground. Cross the road at the sign for the trail to the viewpoint and continue straight ahead on the trail back to the parking lots. Click on the link at the end of this entry for more information from Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation.
Queen Elizabeth Provincial Park
Lat: 56.2191280963 Long: -117.693540328
Located on the shores of Lac Cardinal, this park protects diverse forest habitats and offers excellent recreation and wildlife viewing. Water-based activities include swimming, boating, water-skiing, sailing and windsurfing.
This park is one of the principal attractions of the Peace River Country. It is historically and culturally significant, scenically spectacular and has a great campground and visitor centre. The trail can be divided into two short 40 minute loops both starting at the visitor centre or do all 4.86 km at once in an hour and 20 minutes. The first loop starts at the visitor centre and heads downriver through the campground to Dunvegan Gardens. Take the short trail along the river to see hummingbirds and the enchanted garden near the entrance to Dunvegan Gardens. Return along the perimeter of the campground by the phone and dump station. Back at the Visitor Centre continue along the river, past St Charles Mission and the boat launch, under the Dunvegan Suspension Bridge (an Alberta Icon), past the Hudsons Bay Factor’s house to Maples Park. Return along the same route to the visitor centre. Click on the link at the end of this entry for more information from Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation.
One of the oldest fur trade and missionary posts in Alberta, Dunvegan Provincial Park includes a visitor centre, restored fort and mission buildings (St. Charles Mission church & rectory and factors house), river-side walking trails and spectacular views of the Peace River valley. The park is also the site of Alberta’s only suspension bridge. Historic site tours are available during summer months.