Camping Bylaw FAQ

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Camping Bylaw FAQ

  • Why is the District of Squamish implementing this Bylaw?

    Squamish sees an increasing number of seasonal visitors each year. With this increase, more people are choosing to camp outside the designated camping areas, prompting concerns with waste management, wildlife attractants, wildfire risk, and neighbourhood interface – issues official campgrounds have the facilities to mitigate. The intention of the bylaw is to mitigate social and environmental impacts resulting from the high density of "wild" campers by encouraging camping in designated campgrounds, or dispersed on crown land beyond the District of Squamish boundaries.

     

  • Where can I camp within the District of Squamish?

    There are over 700 camping spots situated across municipal, private, BC park, and BC recreation site campgrounds within the District of Squamish. Visit our camping guide for more information and locations. Also check out the Campsite Availability calendar which provides campers with a calendar identifying available campsites at local campgrounds. 

  • How do I check for campground availability?

    Tourism Squamish has launched a campsite availability calendar to assist campers with finding available campsites nightly in Squamish. View the Campsite Availability calendar here.

     

  • What if I don’t want to pay for camping?

    Camping is permitted on crown land outside municipal boundaries for a maximum of 14 consecutive days. No long-term structures are permitted, and campsites must be returned to their original condition at the end of your stay. 

     

  • Will I be fined if I camp on crown land within the boundaries of the District of Squamish?

    Anyone camping within sensitive areas identified in the Camping Bylaw Zone, will be subject to a $100 fine. Identified sensitive area no camping zones include: the Mamquam Forest Service Road and Powerhouse Springs Road, and the Squamish Estuary and Spit.

    Dispersed camping is allowed on crown land outside the boundaries of the municipality, as per the Permissions Policy of the provincial Land Act, and for up to 14 consecutive calendar days.

     

  • What is No Trace camping?

    No Trace camping means that the environment/site is left as you found it, once you leave.

    Principles of No Trace camping include:

    • Respecting local fire restrictions and checking for current fire bans at squamish.ca
    • Securing food to avoid attracting wildlife
    • Disposing of garbage, organics and recycling properly
    • Disposing of human waste and toilet paper properly
    • Returning your campsite to its original condition
    • Respecting your neighbours and the surrounding community

     

  • What resources are available for campers?

    Please refer to our Camping Guide for locations of the following services

    • Garbage and recycling depots
    • Showers and Aquatic Centre
    • Free Wi-Fi
    • Medical Care
    • Police

     

  • How will this bylaw be enforced?

    Municipal bylaw officers, in conjunction with local police and provincial agencies, will focus enforcement efforts on seasonal campers through routine patrols in the Estuary and Spit, as well as the Mamquam Forest Service Road, Powerhouse Springs Road and adjacent parcels of crown land.

     

  • Does the Permissions Policy of the provincial Land Act apply within municipal boundaries?

    No. The Permissions Policy (the policy of the Land Act which allows for crown land camping) does not apply within the boundaries of a municipality. The District Camping Bylaw gives municipal bylaw officers the authority to ticket campers within the Camping Bylaw Zone.

     

  • What does this bylaw mean for the local van dwelling community?

    The District is working with representatives of the year-round van dwelling community to understand any unintended impacts that this bylaw may have. Some of their concerns have been met, while balancing the needs of other residents. Dialogue with the entire community will remain ongoing as this bylaw comes into effect.

     

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