Elk Falls Park is located just west of Campbell River on the Gold River Hwy. It has a great many trails for hiking, picnic areas, and over 200 individual campsites along the Quinsam River. The upper falls and the day-use areas are located just below the dam on John Hart Lake, Vancouver Island.
The Quinsam River Campsite provides great riverside camping in the heart of a world-renowned fishing area. The Quinsam River with its great trout fishing runs right by the campground and from November to March, the Steelhead run right by the campsites.
Lakes in the area, many of which have been stocked with rainbow, Cutthroat, and Dolly Varden Trout can offer up some incredible fishing along with great wildlife viewing.
During the late summer and fall, fishermen head to the tidal waters at the mouth of the Campbell River to fish for returning Pink Salmon, there is an incredible run in both the Campbell River and the Quinsam River.
After a great morning meal at your campsite among the beautiful forests along the river, you could pack a picnic lunch and head up the canyon view trail. After walking just 3 km from the campground, you will reach the Elk Falls day use and picnic area, this picnic area contains many easy walking trails and of course, the incredible cascading waterfall that gives this park its name.
Hiking trails also lead to other areas in the park, which is home to a large and wonderful stand of old-growth Douglas fir. The trails that lead along the canyon offer up some great photo opportunities along with breathtaking views of the river far below. The new suspension bridge is open now, and it’s quite an awesome place to view the falls from.
Elk Falls Park has a wide variety of birds including Great blue herons, killdeer, Ravens, crows, Chestnut-backed chickadees, and Eagles being the most abundant resident bird species, but you can also see Western Tanagers, Golden-Crowned kinglets, Barred Owls, Red-Tailed Hawks, and other avian visitors.
Mammals include Black Tail Deer, Black Bears, Cougars, and Roosevelt Elk as well as Shrews, Squirrels, Voles, Raccoons, Mink, Otters, Muskrat, and Beaver. A beaver dam and pond are located west of the campground on the beaver pond trail. Roosevelt Elk visits the park during the winter.
Fish include steelhead, Cutthroat, and Dolly Varden trout, Three Spine Stickleback, freshwater Bullheads plus Chinook, chum, Coho, Pink, and Sockeye salmon.
So for some awesome camping, hiking or fishing, head out to Elk Falls Park and see what this part of the island has to offer, and don’t forget to bring your camera.