Cowichan River Provincial Park (Stoltz Pool)

 

Cowichan River Provincial Park was established in 1995 and protects stretches of Cowichan River, an area recognized internationally for its highly valuable and productive fish habitat. The swift currents of the river are home to many species of fish, such as coho, Chinook, and chum salmon, and steelhead, rainbow, and cutthroat trout. For those who do not wish to fish, there is an abundance of other recreational pursuits. Cowichan River Provincial park is great for swimming, canoeing, whitewater kayaking, tubing, cycling, and hiking. The park is adjacent to the Trans Canada Trail, as well as to the 20 km long Cowichan River Footpath. Hiking, cycling, and horseback riding are also possible on the abandoned rail right-of-way located in close proximity to the park. Please note that the Skutz Falls campground in this park has been closed indefinitely, while the Stoltz Pool campground remains open to visitors.

Facilities

Vehicle Accessible Camping Walk-in / Wilderness Camping Group Camping - - Picnic Areas Campfires - Pit Toilets - Drinking Water - - - Boat Launch Wheel Chair Accessibility - Managed Site / Facility Operator

Activities

Fishing Hiking Swimming Scuba Diving - Canoeing / Kayaking - - Bicycling - - - - Horse Riding Wildlife Watching - - - - -

Rating

Campsite privacy
Fun for kids
Lots of shade
Peacefulness/Quietness
Activities

Number of campsites: 43, reservable: 10, nearest town: Duncan (18 km), Lake Cowichan (15 km)

Additional Information

Location

There are three main access points to this Cowichan River Provincial Park:

Skutz Falls Road/West Access: Located off Highway 18, Skutz Falls Road provides access to Skutz Falls Day-Use area, Horseshoe Bend Group Campsite, Marie Canyon Day-Use area and the Skutz Falls Trailhead of the Cowichan River Trail. Follow signs from Skutz Falls Road via Cowichan Lake Road and Mayo Road to Riverbottom Road.

Highway 18 Connector/Middle Access: Located off Highway 18, the Highway 18 Connector provides access to the Stoltz Pool Campground, Group Campsite and Day-Use areas. Follow signs to Riverbottom Road.

Robertson Road/South East Access: Located on Robertson Road in the Glenora area south of Duncan. To access this point proceed west on Glenora Road, turn right onto Vaux Road and continue down Vaux Road, as it leads into Robertson Road. This provides access to the Glenora Trailhead of the Cowichan River Trail.

Contact Information

R.L.C. Enterprize Ltd.
E-mail address: office@rlcenterprize.com
Phone: (250) 474-1336
Please go to www.discovercamping.ca to reserve a campsite. For group site reservations, please call R.L.C. Enterprize.

Camping Information

Fees

Vehicle Accessible Camping Fee: $15.00 per party / night.
BC Senior's Rate (Labour Day to June 14 only):$7.50 per senior couple/night.
Winter Vehicle Accessible Camping Fee: $10.00 per party / night.

Operation Dates

Stoltz Pool campground is open year round. Operation dates with full services and fees: May 15 - September 15.
Skutz Falls campground is permanently closed.

Facilities

Vehicle Accessible Camping

Vehicle Accessible Camping

There are 43 drive-in and 4 walk-in sites at the Stoltz Pool campsite, situated in a second-growth Douglas fir stand. All sites are well spaced with easy access to the river.

Walk-in / Wilderness Camping

Walk-in / Wilderness Camping

There are 4 walk-in campsites at the Stoltz Pool campground. Camping is permitted only in designated campsites.

Group Camping

Group Camping

Group campsites are available at Stoltz Pool and Horseshoe Bend, located in the west between the 66-Mile Trestle and the Skutz Falls Campground (closed). Group Camping Fee: $15.00 per party / night. Youth Group Camping Fee: $50.00 per group / night.

Picnic Areas

Picnic Areas

There are four day-use areas at Cowichan River Park: The main day-use area at Stoltz Pool, as well as Skutz Falls, Marie Canyon and 66-Mile Trestle. Group Picnicking Fee: $50.00 per group

Drinking Water

Drinking Water

Cold water hand pumps are located at Stoltz Pool. It is recommended that you boil, filter or treat this water prior to consumption.

Boat Launch

Boat Launch

A boat launch suitable for hand-launching only is located at the Stoltz Pool day-use area near the group campsite. Parking is available near the boat launch.

Wheel Chair Accessibility

Wheel Chair Accessibility

The Stoltz Pool day-use/picnicking area is wheelchair accessible.

Activities

Fishing

Fishing

This park offers excellent river fishing opportunities. The Cowichan River is a highly important river because of its variety and abundance of fish species, including coho, Chinook and chum salmon, steelhead and Rainbow, Brown and Cutthroat trout. It is one of only two rivers in British Columbia known to have Brown trout, which was introduced from Scotland in the 1930s. Spawning salmon are often easily seen during the fall spawning season at Marie Canyon. All fishing is often closed in this section of the river from October to mid-December; specific fishing closures are posted at information shelters within the park.

Hiking

Hiking

A maze of developed and undeveloped routes offers significant walking and hiking opportunities in and around Cowichan River Provincial Park.

Swimming

Swimming

Swimming and tubing are popular activities at the Stoltz Pool day-use area and below Skutz Falls. Warning: The Cowichan River has fluctuating water levels and swift currents. Children should be accompanied by an adult when in or near the river. Visitors should also expect natural occurrences such as log jams and sweepers at any point and at any time along the river. Severe rapids exist at Marie Canyon and Skutz Falls throughout the year. Information on these hazards and pull-out locations are posted at the park. Visitors wishing to swim or float tube in this area must familiarize themselves prior to entering the river. There are no lifeguards at Provincial Parks.

Scuba Diving

Scuba Diving

Snorkeling and scuba diving in this clear river is becoming more and more popular, as it offers great opportunities for fish viewing.

Canoeing / Kayaking

Canoeing / Kayaking

Canoeing and kayaking are popular in the Stoltz Pool day-use area. Experienced whitewater kayakers may wish to navigate the river between Skutz Falls and Marie Canyon. The river is suitable for year round kayaking, although the best water conditions are from October through to June. Warning: The Cowichan River has fluctuating water levels and swift currents. Paddlers should also expect natural occurrences such as log jams and sweepers at any point and at any time along the river. Severe rapids exist at Marie Canyon and Skutz Falls throughout the year. Information on these hazards and pull-out locations are posted at the park. Visitors must familiarize themselves prior to entering the river.

Horse Riding

Horse Riding

Horseback riding is permitted on the Trans-Canada Trail.

Wildlife Watching

Wildlife Watching

River viewing points at Skutz Falls and Marie Canyon are prime locations to watch spawning salmon in the fall, or to have a picnic at the end of a day's hike. Marie Canyon day-use overlooks the Cowichan River as it surges through a spectacular sheer rock canyon. Skutz Falls offers magnificent views of river rapids and a man-made fish ladder. The restored 66-Mile and Holt Creek railway trestles along the Trans-Canada Trail offer spectacular river views and the opportunity to imagine back to a time when log-laden traincars would thunder along these tracks high above the Cowichan River.

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