Garibaldi Provincial Park: Cheakamus Lake Area
Topographical map 92-J-2 1:50,000
Glacier fed Cheakamus Lake lies at elevation 915 metres surrounded by mountains that tower to 1,600 metres above its thickly forested shoreline.
Turn right off Hwy 99, 48 km north of Squamish or 2.5 km south of Whistler at Function Junction. The logging road to the trailhead is on the left-hand side after 500 metres. It is 7.5 km from the highway to the parking lot.
All campers must make a reservation through the Discover Camping Reservation Service year-round and must produce proof of reservation – failure to do so can result in an eviction and fines.
Please pay your camping fees here:
Reservations are required for Cheakamus Lake and Helm Creek year-round.
There are no garbage facilities so always pack out what you pack in!
Cheakamus Lake campground:
Located 3 km from the parking lot, the Cheakamus Lake campground offers 10 cleared shoreline tent sites, pit toilet facilities and food hang facilities. Located 7 km from the parking lot, the Singing Creek campground offers 7 cleared tent sites, pit toilet facilities and food hang facilities. Be aware food hang facilities exist but be prepared to hang your food as the facilities do fill up.
Helm Creek campground:
Located 8.5 km from the Cheakamus Lake parking lot, and 18 km from the Garibaldi Lake parking lot. The Helm Creek campground offers 30 tent platforms, pit toilet facilities and food hang facilities. Be aware food hang facilities exist but be prepared to hang your food as the facilities do fill up.
Parking lot to Cheakamus Lake: Length, 3 km; suggested time, 45 minutes to 1 hour, one way; elevation change, minimal. An easy, pleasant trail that winds through old growth forest. It is possible to portage a kayak or canoe on this trail.
Cheakamus Lake to Singing Creek: Length, 4 km; suggested time, one hour one way; elevation change, minimal.
Cheakamus Lake to Black Tusk Meadows via Helm Creek: Length, 14.5 km; suggested time, 6 to 7 hours one way; elevation change, 600 metres. Located 1.5 km along the Cheakamus Lake trail, the trail drops down to a bridge across the Cheakamus River. On the other side of the river the trail switchbacks upward, following Helm Creek past the Helm Creek campground, through the Cinder Flats, to the Upper Lakes and the meadows.
Cheakamus Lake parking lot to Garibaldi Lake parking lot via Helm Creek: Length, 25 km; recommended as a two day trip; elevation change, 1,000 metres. Located 1.5km along the Cheakamus Lake trail, the trail drops down to a bridge across the Cheakamus River. On the other side of the river, the trail switchbacks upward, following Helm Creek to the Helm Creek camping area at 8.5 km. Continue through the Cinder Flats and Black Tusk meadows to Taylor Meadows and onto the Garibaldi Lake parking lot. Side trips can be made to the Black Tusk, Panorama Ridge or Garibaldi Lake.
Items of Importance
Mountain biking is permitted on the trail as far as the Cheakamus Lake campsites but may not be taken across the Cheakamus River Bridge on the Helm Creek trail.
The Cheakamus Lake area experiences increased black bear activity in the spring season. Please use caution while travelling through the area and respect their environment. Stay on the trail and never approach or feed the wildlife. Remember, “A fed bear is a dead bear.”