Nitinat Lake

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Lakes, Pacific Northwest

Nitinat Lake, Vancouver Island, Pacific Northwest
Nitinat Lake, Photo By Bud Logan

Nitinat lake is a beautiful lake, 24 km in length and 1 km wide. Nitinat Lake flows into the ocean at Nitinat narrows, a narrow tidal passage three kilometers long. The Nitinat area is becoming a major tourism center, with the lake being named as one of the world’s ten best windsurfing areas.

This adventure land is a popular recreation destination for swimmers, boaters, paddlers, windsurfers, and anglers. A wonderful experience for kayakers as they explore Nitinat lake and the smaller lakes in the Nitinat triangle. There is a lot more to explore in the area, including canyons, caves, rivers and rain forests.

Services at Nitinat Lake include a small motel, restaurant, campsite, gas station and a food store operated by the Ditidaht First Nations. Camping facilities are available at the lake recreation site that is situated in a grove of giant spruce trees, there 53 campsites here. Drive through the village to reach this site. There is a boat launch about half  way down the lake, close to Doobah creek and the water only access knob point rec site campground.

Nitinat Lake, Vancouver Island, Pacific Northwest
Nitinat Lake, Photo By Bud Logan

The lake lies alongside the Nitinat main line road, with road access from port Alberni and Bamfield on the Bamfield road and south Main. The lake can also be reached on Nitinat main and south main logging roads from the western end of cowichan Lake, a 150-km drive from Victoria that takes 2 to 3 hours.

There is some great fishing in both lake and Nitinat river, and in the lakes, rivers and creeks that are in the area. The Nitinat river is a good river for fly fishing. A small run of summer steelhead occurs in June and early July, with a run of winter steelhead in February, March and early April. The lower section of the river and the mouth of the Nitinat are productive for cutthroat.

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