British Columbia Wildlife Watch - Lower Mainland Region (Sunshine Coast Viewing Sites)
copyright © A.L. Mol  2003
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Within the Sunshine Coast portion of the Lower Mainland Region, the following 17 viewing sites are identified.

       Sechelt (8 sites)
       Powell River (9 sites)

The Sunshine Coast is accessible by three BC Ferries routes.

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   Sechelt - Southern Sunshine Coast
    Detailed Location Map   (click here for a map showing the location of the following 8 viewing sites)
    WARNING - this will take some time to load!!

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   Powell River - Northern Sunshine Coast
    Detailed Location Map   (click here for a map showing the location of the following 9 viewing sites)
    WARNING - this will take some time to load!!


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   Chapman Creek Hatchery

Chapman Creek is one of several large creeks in the Sechelt area that provides important fish habitat. A number of species are reared at Chapman Creek Hatchery, including Coho, Chum, Chinook and Pink Salmon, and Cutthroat Trout. The hatchery is open year round.

Viewing Highlights - From August through December adult salmon use Chapman Creek to spawn. Pink Salmon are present in August and September. Coho and Chum Salmon are visible later, beginning in mid October.

A viewing platform provides good views of the creek. A trail leads upstream along Chapman Creek to a recently developed side stream with wintering habitat for juvenile fish.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) between Roberts Creek and Sechelt turn north onto Field Road. There are blue and white hatchery directional signs on the highway. From Field Road turn left onto Parkway Drive and continue straight to the hatchery.

For more information contact -

Sunshine Coast Salmonid Enhancement Society
4381 Parkway Drive, Sechelt, B.C. Canada V0N 3A1
phone: (604) 885 4136
fax: (604) 885 4176
e-mail

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   Copeland Islands Provincial Marine Park

This park consists of a small chain of islands, islets and rocks. There is restricted anchorage, and swimming, fishing and paddling galore. This is an excellent place to explore by kayak or canoe.

Viewing Highlights - The waters surrounding this park is frequented throughout the year by many species of diving waterbirds, including ducks, cormorants and murrelets. The park is also a good place to look for marine mammals such as seals and sea lions, especially during the winter months.

Directions - The park is accessible by boat only. The closest boat launch is located at Lund.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Garibaldi/Sunshine District
Box 220, Brackendale, B.C. Canada V0N 1H0
phone: (604) 898-3678
fax: (604) 898-4171
e-mail

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   Inland Lake Provincial Park

This site contains a 13.5 km, 2 m wide limestone pathway that circles Inland Lake. There are picnic sites, overnight camping sites and fishing wharfs. The trail is totally wheelchair accessible. An interpretive book, produced by the Ministry of Forests, is available for a small charge.

Viewing Highlights - There are many viewing opportunities at Inland Lake. If you only have a short time, walk the east side of the lake to the marsh boardwalk. Swallows, songbirds and some waterfowl may be observed. Woodpeckers are commonly seen in the forests.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) turn northward onto Alberni Street. At Manson Avenue turn right, and continue to Cranberry Street. Turn right and continue to Haslam Street where you turn left. Follow the signs to Inland Lake. The area is usually closed during the winter so it is best to check with the Ministry of Forests before driving to the lake.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Garibaldi/Sunshine District
Box 220, Brackendale, B.C. Canada V0N 1H0
phone: (604) 898-3678
fax: (604) 898-4171
e-mail

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   John Daly Regional Park

Located on Anderson Creek, this tiny regional park contains important fish habitat.

Viewing Highlights - Chum and Coho Salmon spawn in the creek. They are visible from mid October to mid November.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway), just north of the community of Madeira Park, turn west onto Garden Bay Road. At Roosen Road turn left and continue a short distance to the park entrance. If the gate is closed, park and walk in.

For more information contact -

Sunshine Coast Regional District, Parks Department
Box 800, Sechelt, B.C. Canada V0N 3A0
phone: (604) 885-2261
fax:

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   Khartoum Lake Forest Service Recreation Site

This recreation site offers wilderness camping and fishing, and is part of the Powell River Forest Canoe Route.

Viewing Highlights - The rocky bluffs visible at Khartoum Lake and further north in the Lois River Valley are good places to look for Mountain Goat. The best viewing times are in April, May, October and November.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) turn north onto Dixon Road. At the main road division take Third Lake Road to the right. Caution: Access to this site is via an active logging road that is usually closed to visitors during weekdays, with evening and weekend access only. Check with the Ministry of Forests on access. This can be a very rough road at times, and is not recommended for some vehicles. A four wheel drive vehicle is best.

For more information contact -

Ministry of Forests, Sunshine Coast Forest District
7077 Duncan Street, Powell River, B.C. Canada V8A 1W1
phone: (604) 485-0700
fax: (604) 485-0799

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   Lang Creek Estuary

The estuary area is where the fresh water of Lang Creek enters the salt water of Malaspina Strait. It is a very productive area for both fish and wildlife.

Viewing Highlights - Throughout the year, many different waterfowl and shorebird species use the estuary. The fall salmon migration into Lang Creek attracts many Bald Eagle that feed on the dead and dying fish carcasses. The November to January period is best to see the eagles.

Directions - Lang Creek estuary is located directly across the highway from Lang Creek Hatchery and Spawning Channel. Walk to the estuary or from Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) turn south onto Brew Bay Road and continue straight to the end of the road.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119

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   Lang Creek Forest Service Recreation Site

This small site is located at Lang Creek Falls.

Viewing Highlights - Salmon migrating up Lang Creek can be viewed attempting to jump the series of waterfalls. The falls are unpassable for fish. The best viewing time is during September and October. Look for chickadees and woodpeckers along the trail to the falls.

Directions - Access to this site is by trail from Duck Lake Road. The turn onto Duck Lake Road is located along Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) west of the hatchery.

For more information contact -

Ministry of Forests, Sunshine Coast Forest District
7077 Duncan Street, Powell River, B.C. Canada V8A 1W1
phone: (604) 485-0700
fax: (604) 485-0799

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   Lang Creek Hatchery and Spawning Channel

Lang Creek provides important habitat for spawning salmon as well as year round habitat for juvenile fish. The small spawning channel next to the hatchery provides enhanced viewing opportunities.

Viewing Highlights - Four species of salmon spawn in Lang Creek between mid August and late November. The most visible species are Chum and Coho Salmon from about mid September to mid November.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) you can turn directly into the hatchery parking area. There are blue and white hatchery directional signs on the highway.

For more information contact -

Powell River Enhancement Society
7050 Alberni Street, Powell River, B.C. Canada V8A 2C3
phone: (604) 485-7612
fax:

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   Langdale Creek

This small creek runs along the southern side of the Langdale Terminal of BC Ferries, and is visible through the wire fence.

Viewing Highlights - Small numbers of Coho and Chum Salmon may be observed in the creek. The best viewing time is from mid October to mid December.

Directions - The ferry terminal is located near Gibsons at the Sunshine Coast side of the Langdale Ferry route. There is ample parking available at the terminal if you are not taking the ferry. To visit the creek you can walk across the parking area for ferry vehicles.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119

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   Nanton Lake Forest Service Recreation Site

This recreation site offers wilderness camping and fishing, and is part of the Powell River Forest Canoe Route.

Viewing Highlights - A small herd of Roosevelt Elk has been transplanted to this general area. As you travel in the Nanton Lake area, keep a watch for these big animals. They can be observed year round. The best viewing times are in the early morning and before dusk periods. Look along the forest edges.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) turn north onto Dixon Road. At the main road division take Weldwood Main Road straight ahead. Caution: Access to this site is via an active logging road that is usually closed to visitors during weekdays, with evening and weekend access only. Check with the Ministry of Forests on access. This can be a very rough road at times, and is not recommended for some vehicles. A four wheel drive vehicle is best.

For more information contact -

Ministry of Forests, Sunshine Coast Forest District
7077 Duncan Street, Powell River, B.C. Canada V8A 1W1
phone: (604) 485-0700
fax: (604) 485-0799

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   Porpoise Bay Provincial Park

Porpoise Bay Provincial Park is located on the east side of Sechelt Inlet 4 km north of Sechelt. The park is 61 hectares of second growth coniferous forest with a component of great moss-covered big-leaf maple and red alder. There is a sandy beach about 1 km long. Angus Creek flows through the park into Porpoise bay, and is a popular salmon-watching spot.

Recreational opportunities include walking the several loop trails, wildlife viewing, nature study, swimming, picnicking, camping, kayaking and canoeing.

Viewing Highlights - The park offers excellent year round birding with a good selection of waterbirds in winter, including loons, grebes, cormorants, ducks and gulls. In spring there are migrant warblers and vireos in the woods, and in July and August the intertidal mud flat of the Angus Creek estuary is very good for shorebirds.

The marsh area of the estuary should be carefully watched in fall for migrant sparrows and rare passerines. Bald Eagle frequent the park in all seasons. There are many birds to see and hear in the park on any day of the year.

During the fall, Chum and Coho Salmon spawning in Angus Creek may be easily observed. The best time for viewing is during November and early December.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) in Sechelt follow the park directional signs 4 km to the park.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Garibaldi/Sunshine District
Box 220, Brackendale, B.C. Canada V0N 1H0
phone: (604) 898-3678
fax: (604) 898-4171
e-mail

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   Ruby Creek

Ruby Creek is a short length of water that drains from Ruby Lake into Sakinaw Lake. Several habitat enhancement projects have been completed, including the addition of new gravel into the creek bed, and the placement of covers over portions of the creek.

Viewing Highlights - Ruby Creek provides spawning habitat for a rare population of Coastal Cutthroat Trout and for Kokanee Salmon. Kokanee spend their entire life cycle in fresh water, and, like Sockeye Salmon, turn red when spawning. The best viewing is in late fall.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) at the south end of Ruby Lake, turn onto Halowell Road. Continue straight to the bridge over Ruby Creek.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119

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   Sargeant Bay Provincial Park

Sargeant Bay Provincial Park is located on the Sunshine Coast 7 km west of Sechelt. The park is 57 hectares in size, and contains 400 m of shingle beach, a small lake with a cattail marsh, and an upland area of second growth forest. This diversity of habitats attracts a wide variety of birds and other wildlife.

The park is noted for its beautiful bay, and for the views east to Vancouver and Mount Baker (easily visible on clear days). Recreational opportunities include walking, hiking to Triangle Lake, wildlife viewing, nature study, swimming, picnicking, mountain biking (to Triangle Lake), kayaking and canoeing.

Viewing Highlights - The birding is excellent but the emphasis varies by season. In winter there are many waterbirds on the bay, including loons, grebes, cormorants, ducks, gulls and alcids. In spring there are migrant warblers and vireos in addition to much activity around the marsh.

The upland forest is good in summer for flycatchers and Western Tanagers, and in the fall the lake is visited by a variety of ducks, and the berm is very good for sparrows. Bald Eagle and other raptors are quite common in all seasons.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) just west of Sechelt follow the park directional signs and turn onto Redrooffs Road. The park entrance is on the left, 1 km from the highway. The park also extends above Redrooffs Road, and the Colvin Creek Trail and the Triangle Lake Trail are located here.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Garibaldi/Sunshine District
Box 220, Brackendale, B.C. Canada V0N 1H0
phone: (604) 898-3678
fax: (604) 898-4171
e-mail

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   Sechelt Marsh

This small marsh is owned by The Nature Trust of British Columbia, and is managed by the District of Sechelt in cooperation with the Sunshine Coast natural History Society. The head of Sechelt Inlet is located directly across the street from the marsh. Together the freshwater marsh and the salt water inlet provide important wildlife habitat.

Viewing Highlights - Woodpeckers and swallows frequent the marsh and its forest edges. Many ducks and geese are seen year round. Shorebirds can be observed in both spring and fall migrations, especially when the tide is low.

Directions - From Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway) follow the Porpoise Bay Provincial Park directional signs north onto Wharf Street. Continue straight to this site located a few blocks past Porpoise Road.

For more information contact -

Sunshine Coast Natural History Society
Box 543, Sechelt, B.C. Canada V0N 3A0
phone: (604) 885-5539
fax:

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   Skookumchuk Narrows Provincial Park

During the ebb and flow of tides between Sechelt Inlet and Jervis Inlet the water is greatly constricted at Skookumchuk Narrows. The boiling tidal rapids are quite a site. A viewpoint located high on a rocky bluff at Skookumchuk Narrows provides excellent views of this spectacle.

Viewing Highlights - Chickadees, nuthatches and woodpeckers are common along the forest trail. At the viewpoint, many diving waterbirds are visible, including mergansers, ducks and grebes. Harbour Seal are common also.

Directions - Access to the park is by trail that begins near the end of Egmont Road near Egmont. There is a 4 km trail from the parking area to the viewpoint.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Garibaldi/Sunshine District
Box 220, Brackendale, B.C. Canada V0N 1H0
phone: (604) 898-3678
fax: (604) 898-4171
e-mail

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   Sliammon Hatchery and Spawning Channel

This hatchery and spawning channel is located alongside Sliammon Creek.

Viewing Highlights - Chum Salmon spawn in Sliammon Creek. The best viewing time is during October and November. The actual timing of up stream migration varies slightly depending on the creek's water level. The short spawning channel provides enhanced opportunities to see fish. A few Bald Eagle frequent the area throughout the year.

Directions - The hatchery is located a short drive from Powell River along Highway 101 (Sunshine Coast Highway). There is limited parking room on site.

For more information contact -

Sliammon Indian Band
R.R. #2, Sliammon Road, Powell River, B.C. Canada V8A 4Z3
phone: (604) 483-4111
fax:

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   Texada Island

Texada Island can be explored by vehicle or by bicycle. The main island communities are Vananda and Gillies Bay. A park with considerable beach access is located at Gillies Bay.

Viewing Highlights - The island is home to a large population of Mule Deer. They are visible during most times of the year. If you get away from the more populated areas, park along the road and wait. The best viewing times are first thing in the morning and at dusk. During hunting season viewing is poor.

Directions - Texada Island is accessed via ferry from Powell River. Both paved road and dirt roads provide access around the northern part of the island.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119