Upper Campbell Lake on Vancouver Island is a large man-made lake that was created when the government of the day built the Strathcona dam. This is one of three lakes that were created by dams on the same water system.
This lake is located 27 km southwest of Campbell River, access to the lake is directly off the Gold River Highway or down the old elk river timber logging road, but this road is in rough shape.
There are nice numbers of rainbow, cutthroat, and dolly varden trout in this lake that average around 40 to 50 cm but can get to around 3 kg on occasion. The best fishing is from March to June and September to November. Trolling is the best way to fish in this lake, but just before dark, the fish will move to the shore areas to feed on insects, and you can bobber fish, fly fish, or bottom fish with great success. There is nothing like fighting a big trout on light fly-fishing tackle from the shore, then frying the fish up right there on the beach as the sun goes down.
There are many boat launches and camping areas on the lake. You can gain access to the Strathcona park and provincial campgrounds on buttle lake through a short pass the separates the two lakes. There are many more campgrounds on Buttle lake. There are many trails on both Upper Campbell Lake and Buttle lake, these will take into some of the prettiest areas of the island.
The nearest lakes to Upper Campbell Lake are buttle lake, upper quinsam lake, beavertail lake, and gooseneck lake. All are quite awesome.
The winds can come up real fast on Upper Campbell Lake and all boaters should keep an eye on this, as the waves can grow pretty big.