Alouette Lake (short) Paddles


Given its proximity to Vancouver, highly rated hiking trails, well-serviced campground, and gorgeous Alouette Lake, Golden Ears Provincial Park is one of the most popular provincial parks in BC. As of July 27, 2020, a day-pass system was introduced to control the crowds during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Junior exploring the park.

We went to Alouette Lake to paddleboard on a Friday morning before the day-pass system was introduced, and found the parking lot quite empty. Saturday was a different story, but more on that later.

South Beach was not very busy on a cloudy Friday morning. Visitor volume picked up a little in the afternoon but I don’t think the parking lot was full that day.
Day camp for the baby.

Launching the paddleboard was a little awkward, since a large section of the beach was blocked off as a swim area. All kayakers and SUPers were forced to launch on either side of the swim area, and were somewhat crammed into a small corner.

Once we got onto the lake though, the paddle was fantastic!

#YesFilter

We paddle from the South Beach, crossed the boat launch, and circled back after 30 minutes for an hour-long round trip. Didn’t get very far but the view was great.

There were several speeding jetskis on the lake doing water donuts, sometimes even close to the designated swimming area, so that was somewhat annoying.

Mom joined the fun for a few minutes but our toddler was very upset about that for some reason. Probably because he had very little nap due to all the excitement.

We actually also took the baby on the board, and he stayed with the program for about 5 minutes before getting upset. Pro tip: 4 months old is probably a little young for paddleboarding. Maybe wait until they can sit unsupported.

We promise the baby also had fun.

We camped overnight and on Saturday, when we tried to go do a hike in one of the popular trails, all of the parking lots were completely full by 11am! We didn’t want to walk kilometers on roads just to get to the trailheads, so we ended up paddling some more around Campers Beach near North Beach.

As its name suggests, Campers Beach is only accessible to campers in the Aloette and North Beach campgrounds. Depending on where your actual campsite is in the campground, the walk to the beach may take anywhere between 10 to 30 minutes. After walking down to the beach with a pumped up paddleboard, I thought it may be easier to carry the SUP to the beach in a carrier bag, then pump it up manually instead.

Campers Beach
The weather was still gloomy and the wind were picking up in the afternoon.
Junior’s favorite paddling companion is GoPro, which he adorably tries to voice command.
Mom had a better time paddling this day, and she went for a good 10-15 minutes.

Next time I visit Alouette Lake, I plan to paddle from South Beach to North Beach, and perhaps explore the Gold Creek a little bit. That would make a nice 12km round trip day-paddle, which may be a little long for a toddler.

  • Difficulty – minor chops typical of a large lake, especially if wind picks up
  • Boat traffic – lots of motor boats and jetskis
  • View – big beautiful green mountains
  • Facilities – South Beach is very well maintained, with flush toilet and picnic tables. Campers Beach is pretty rustic.
  • Overall score – 7/10

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