Garibaldi Provincial Park
New for 2014: You can now pay for your overnight camping fees for the Elfin Lakes Shelter (cabin) on the Backcountry registration site. Click on the “Get Your Backcountry Camping Permit Now” button. Once you are in Garibaldi Park on the Backcountry registration system, Elfin Cabin is now available on the drop down menu and you will be prompted to fill-in the appropriate fields in the payment section.
As of January 3, 2015
- Be prepared for winter conditions in alpine areas. Expect snow on summer alpine trails, which will make route finding difficult.
- Snowshoes or skis and skins are required for winter travel in the park
- Black Tusk/ Garibaldi Lake access – the Rubble Creek road is not plowed to the parking lot in the winter months. Please do not block the driveways on the main road.
- Diamond Head access – Please be advised that the road to Diamond Head requires winter tires and snow chains in the winter months. Those travelling the road must be equipped and prepared for a self-rescue in case of an emergency.
- Warning: Thieves have been known to operate in the Rubble Creek Parking Lot, targeting vehicles and personal property of park users. Be sure you remove all valuables from your vehicle prior to leaving it unattended, and leave unnecessary belongings at home. If you have any information regarding these incidents, please contact Squamish RCMP at 604-892-6100.
- Avalanche and glacier hazards exist in Garibaldi Provincial Park. Only experienced groups who, practiced in crevasse rescue and who are properly roped, should venture onto snowfields and glaciers.
- Use extra caution and assess before crossing creeks/bodies of water.
- Avalanche Bulletins are found at http://www.avalanche.ca/.
- Wedge Trail Head has been moved. Turn left just before old parking lot and follow signs to new parking lot and trail head.
Pay your camping fees here:
Alternatively it is possible to pay cash at the Diamond Head and Garibaldi Lake parking lots only!
Revenue from fees goes directly into providing park recreation services, such as maintaining trails, park roads (snow removal), and park buildings. This system ensures that members of the public are more involved in paying for the recreation services they use.
Trail InformationView the most recent trail report [PDF]
Diamond Head/Elfin Lakes Area:
Elfin Lakes/Diamond Head Access road is a narrow, rough mountain road. Please be advised that the road to Diamond Head requires winter tires and snow chains in the winter months. Those travelling the road must be equipped and prepared for a self-rescue in case of an emergency.
CAUTION: Diamond Head winter pole route (from Red Heather to Elfin Lakes) is in place.
Elfin Lakes Campground has been relocated to the east, and lies adjacent to the Elfin Lakes shelter. Please use the tent pads and the new day-use shelter area. Please use the clips on the tent pads to post your backcountry camping permit.
Elfin Lakes Shelter is busy on weekends. Shelter capacity is 33 people and fills up quickly. If you are planning on staying overnight, start up the trail early and bring a tent as a backup plan. You can now pay for your overnight camping fees for the Elfin Lakes Shelter (cabin) on the Backcountry registration site. Click on the “Get Your Backcountry Camping Permit Now” button. Once you are in Garibaldi Park on the Backcountry registration system, Elfin Cabin is now available on the drop down menu and you will be prompted to fill-in the appropriate fields in the payment section.
Elfin Lakes Shelter is $15.00 per person per night.
Mamquam Lake campers should bring their own rope for making a bear-proof, hanging food cache.
Join us for Avalanche Awareness Days on January 17th and January 18th, 2015 at the Red Heather warming hut. Meet at Red Heather between 11:00 and 2:00 for gear demos, snow pit profile, single and multiple burial transceiver searches and prizes! Vehicle chains are mandatory beyond the chain-up area and allow 1-2 hours to get from the parking lot up to Red Heather. All ages and abilities are welcome.
Garibaldi Lake area:
Black Tusk/ Garibaldi Lake access – the Rubble Creek road is not plowed to the parking lots in the winter months. Please do not block the driveways on the main road.
Note: there are no huts for overnight use in this area.
Singing Pass Area:
Beware of multiple open creek crossings. Harmony Creek bridge was removed at 5km from Whistler Village. Use caution and assess hazards before crossing creeks, or any body of water.
Please follow the reroute for the first 1.5kms of trail. Please follow the signs at the parking lot. The existing trail is unsafe.
(10 or more) planning a trip into Garibaldi Park are requested to register online well in advance of their trip. A Youth Group Information Package [PDF 132KB] is available for both leaders and youth as a general aid in preparing for a fun, educational and safe wilderness experience.
Know Before You Go
- Use of motorized vehicles including snowmobiles, motorcycles, ATVs, trail bikes and similar conveyances are restricted to park roads and parking lots.
- Domestic animals (dogs/pets);
- Arriving or departing from the park by aircraft;
- Harvesting of natural resources; this includes mushrooms.
CampingCamping is permitted in designated areas only. Be prepared to camp in outdoor conditions if facilities are full.
All camping areas, cabins, shelters, etc. in Garibaldi Provincial Park are operated on a first-come, first-served basis. There are no reservations accepted.
Safety NotesDo not underestimate the demands of the backcountry. The hiker must be in good physical condition, properly equipped, and prepared to be totally self sufficient. Take adequate clothing as mountain weather is subject to sudden change and Garibaldi Park can receive snow anytime of the year.
The Red Heather area in Diamond Head experiences the highest concentration of black bears within Garibaldi Park. Be bear aware when traveling through the area.
Most of the park’s lakes and rivers are glacier fed and the water is extremely cold year round.
The park access roads are subject to poor visibility. Please use caution while driving these roads. Watch for other vehicles, cyclists and wildlife.
View the Voluntary Flight Guidelines - 1990 [PDF 163KB]
Barrier Civil Defence ZoneThe area below and adjacent to the Barrier, a geological feature upholding Garibaldi Lake is considered hazardous. Although imminent danger is unlikely, special regulations are in effect to make you aware of the potential danger and to minimize the risk to life and property in the event of a landslide. Posted signs identify the Civil Defence Zone. Do not camp, stop or linger while traveling through the Zone. Camping or remaining overnight at or near the Garibaldi Lake parking lot is prohibited. Developed campgrounds are located nearby at Alice Lake and Nairn Falls Provincial Parks.
Please Note: Revenue from camping and shelter fees goes directly into providing park recreation services, such as maintaining trails, park roads (snow removal), and park buildings. This system will ensure that members of the public are more involved in paying for the recreation services they use.
Frequently Asked Questions [PDF 52KB]
About This Park
Garibaldi Park’s rich geological history, diverse vegetation, snow-capped mountain, iridescent waters, abundant wildlife and scenic vistas all contribute to the immense beauty. The park is located in the heart of the Coast Mountains just 70 kms north of Vancouver.
Offering over 90 kms of established hiking trails, Garibaldi park is a favourite year round destination for outdoor enthusiasts.
Park Size: 194,650 ha
| Campground Dates of Operation
All dates are subject to change without notice
|Opening and Closing Campground Dates:
|Walk-in Backcountry Campgrounds:|
|– Garibaldi Lake Campground||Year round|
|– Taylor Meadows Campground||Year round|
|– Red Heather Campground||Winter camping only|
|– Elfin Campground||Year round|
|– Helm, Cheakamus Lake, Singing Creek, Russet Lake and Wedgmount Lake Campgrounds||No winter services|
|Campground Reservable Dates:||Not applicable|
|Total Number of Walk-in Accessible Campsites:||
– Garibaldi Lake = 50
Location and MapsPlease note: Any maps listed are for information only – they may not represent legal boundaries and should not be used for navigation.
To simplify finding information, the five Garibaldi Provincial Park access points are listed as they are found traveling along Highway 99, Sea to Sky Highway, south to north.
Maps and BrochuresAny maps listed are for information only – they may not represent legal boundaries and should not be used for navigation.
Nature and Culture
- History: In 1860, while carrying out a survey of Howe Sound on board the Royal Navy survey ship H.M.S. Plumper, Captain George Henry was impressed by a towering mountain dominating the view to the northeast. Captain Richards chose to name the 2,678 metre mountain Mount Garibaldi, after the great 19th century Italian patriot and soldier, Giuseppe Garibaldi, a guerrilla general whose exploits and valour were held in high esteem. In 1907, a party of six Vancouver climbers reached the summit of Mount Garibaldi. The views from the peak inspired the establishment of summer climbing camps at Garibaldi Lake. This early interest led to the creation in 1920 of a park reserve. Garibaldi Provincial Park was legislated as a Class A park in 1927, a 195,000 hectare mountain wilderness just 64 kilometres north of Vancouver.
- Conservation: During July and August the alpine areas of Garibaldi Park offer hikers an opportunity to view alpine flowers in bloom, a beautiful display of nature. Please keep to designated trails. Shortcutting trails destroys plant life and soil structure in fragile alpine meadows. Trail erosion by rain and melting snow occurs rapidly as a result. BC Parks asks for your cooperation as we help to repair damaged areas. Please help by obeying posted signs.
- Wildlife: Small mammals and birds such as squirrels, chipmunks, grey jays, and flickers can often be seen. Large mammals such as mountain goats, deer, cougars, wolverines, grizzly and black bears, also call the park home, although are seen less frequently.
Management PlanningManagement Planning Information
- The management plan for Garibaldi Park was approved in 1990. In Feb 2014 a management plan amendment was approved to provide more specific management direction to the Spearhead area of the park.
- Garibaldi Park Management Plan (1990) [PDF 3.34MB]
- Garibaldi Park Management Plan (Spearhead Area Amendment) (2014) [PDF 1.7MB]
Activities Available at this Park
Note: climbing the Black Tusk is not recommended due to loose, unstable rock.
- Diamond Head: from the parking lot to the Elfin Lakes shelter. Bicycles are not permitted beyond this point and must stay on the main trail. Rock and gravel trail surface.
- Cheakamus Lake: from the parking lot to Singing Creek. Bicycles are not permitted past the bridge on the Helm Creek Trail. Dirt trail surface.
Youth groups planning a trip into Garibaldi Park are requested to register online well in advance of their trip. A Youth Group Information Package [PDF 132KB] is available for both leaders and youths as a general aid in preparing for a fun, educational and safe wilderness experience.
Snowmobiles are NOT permitted in Garibaldi Park.
Facilities Available at this Park
Cabins / Huts / Yurts
Wedgemount Lake: There is a small hut which can accommodate 6 people. Camping is permitted at designated campsites on the ridge near the hut and at Wedgemount Lake near the inlet from the Armchair Glacier. There are 10 tent pads at each location with overflow camping available on the delta near the lake sites. A year-round pit toilet is located near the hut and another is erected near the lake sites during the summer season. No other amenities are provided. There are no garbage facilities so pack out what you pack in! The hut is available year round.
Russet Lake: There is a small hut available at Russet Lake near Singing Pass that can accommodate 6 people. Camping fees are in effect year round, please pay online at the bottom of this page. There are no garbage facilities so pack out what you pack in! Store all food on the hangers provided. This hut is available year round.
Diamond Head: Red Heather day-use shelter offers 2 picnic tables, counters with a wash sink, 2 propane burners, a wood stove (winter only), and pit toilet facilities. Elfin Lakes offers 2 outdoor picnic tables, a day-use shelter with 4 picnic tables, counters with 2 wash sinks, and pit toilet facilities.
Black Tusk/Garibaldi Lake: Garibaldi Lake offers 4 outdoor picnic tables, 4 day use shelters each with 2 picnic tables, counters, wash sinks, and pit toilet facilities. Taylor meadows offers 2 day-use shelters, each with 2 picnic tables, counters, wash sink and pit toilet facilities.
Cheakamus Lake: No picnic tables. Various scenic spots around the lake to picnic in a natural setting. Pit toilet facilities are provided.
Singing Pass: No picnic tables. Small shelter at Russet Lake equipped with a counter and limited seating. Although this shelter is not recommended for picnicking, there is plenty of room outside in a beautiful alpine setting. Pit toilet facilities are provided.
Wedgemount Lake: No picnic tables. Small shelter at Wedgemount Lake with limited seating. Although this shelter is not recommended for picnicking, there is plenty of room outside in a beautiful alpine setting. Pit toilet facilities are provided.
Pit or Flush Toilets
Camping fees are charged year round for all campsites and must be paid in full before entering the park. Proof of payment must be carried at all times while in the park.
Please pay your camping fees here:
Alternatively it is possible to pay cash at the Diamond Head and Garibaldi Lake parking lots only!
Day-use cooking shelters are located at Red Heather, Elfin Lakes, Garibaldi Lake and Taylor Meadows. Camping is not permitted in day-use shelters. register online well in advance of their trip. A Youth Group Information Package [PDF 132KB] is available for both leaders and youths as a general aid in preparing for a fun, educational and safe wilderness experience.