Fire Restrictions in Effect for this Park
Activites and Facilities Available in this Park - Click icon to view
Activities Available at this Park
Facilities Available at this Park

Chemainus River Provincial Park

About This Park

Chemainus River Provincial Park The park addition is located on the Chemainus River, approximately 3 km northwest of Duncan on southern Vancouver Island.

There is NO CAMPING or CAMPFIRES allowed in this park at any time.
Advisory: The park gate will be locked and vehicle access through Chemainus River Park will be limited May 16-17.


Please note: This park is cooperatively managed by the Cowichan Valley Regional District. Services and facilities may differ from those offered in other BC Parks.

Park Size: 119 hectares
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Location and Maps

Please note: Any maps listed are for information only – they may not represent legal boundaries and should not be used for navigation. The nearest cities or towns are Duncan and Cowichan.
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Nature and Culture

  • History: Chemainus River Provincial Park was established on December 30, 1959.
  • Cultural Heritage: Chemainus River Park lies within the traditional territories of the Nanaimo First Nation, the Chemainus First Nation, the Cowichan Indian Band and the Cowichan Tribes. Traditional uses include fishing, berry picking and bark stripping. The remnants of an old railway grade in the park is also of historic importance.
  • Conservation: Surrounded by a buffer of mature, second-growth forest, Chemainus River Park is home to Roosevelt elk, who use the river as a corridor, and black bears, cougars and wolves, who forage along the riverbanks. The river is home to coho salmon and steelhead. Found in the river above Copper Canyon, the steelhead are a sping “race” with a summer run. Since all steelhead are stopped at the canyon, the deep pools of the upper river are ideally suited to the production of steelhead. The river also has numerous sensitive ecosystems related to the floodplain and riparian vegetation.
  • General Wildlife, Marine & Outdoor Ethics Information
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Activities Available at this Park

Canoeing

Canoeing

There are opportunities for canoeing and river kayaking in this park. No facilities are provided.
Cycling

Cycling

Bicycles must keep to roadways. Bicycle helmets are mandatory in British Columbia.
Fishing

Fishing

Chemainus River Provincial Park is a popular destination for anglers. The river is home to spring and summer runs of steelhead, as well as a variety of freshwater species.

For up-to-date information, all anglers should check all current and relevant Freshwater (Non Tidal) Sport Fishing Regulations Synopsis and Tidal Water Sport Fishing Regulations, including the appropriate licensing requirements, prior to fishing. Click here for links to this information.
Hiking

Hiking

There are no developed trails at this park; however, there are several routes that follow the river and lead to various swimming holes.
Horseback Riding

Horseback Riding

Horseback riding is permitted in this park.
Pets on Leash

Pets on Leash

Pets/domestic animals must be on a leash and under control all times. You are responsible for their behaviour and must dispose of their excrement. Backcountry areas are not suitable for dogs or other pets due to wildlife issues and the potential for problems with bears.
Swimming

Swimming

There is no designated swimming area at this park, although a number of calm swimming holes and deep pools provide good opportunities for swimming. There are no lifeguards on duty at provincial parks.
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Facilities Available at this Park

Picnic Areas

Picnic Areas

This park can be used for day-use; however, there are no facilities at this time. The park is a popular destination for locals, who head here to picnic on the riverbank and swim in the calm swimming holes and pools in the river.