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
Park Contact

K2 Park Services Ltd.
E-mail address: k2parks@shaw.ca
Phone/Fax: (250) 539-2115
Website: www.k2parks.ca

Montague Harbour Marine Provincial Park

  • Please be advised, the area located north east of the main campground road, across from campsites #5, 6, 8, 9, 11, 14, 15 and 17, is closed to public access. There are no designated trails in this area and due to the hazardous terrain, recreating in this area is prohibited.
  • Please be advised, campsites #1, 2, 3, 7, 10, 12, 13, 16, 18, 19 and 20 will be closed permanently due to recent concerns associated with rock fall hazard. Thank you for your co-operation.
  • Water System Upgrade: We are pleased to announce that the Water Treatment Upgrade Project has been completed and is now serving campground and day-use visitors.
  • (NEW) Shell Beach Staircase: The new Shell Beach Staircase, located north-west of the lagoon and south of the boat launch, has been completed and is open for use. Thank you for your patience and co-operation during the construction interval.

About This Park

Montague Harbour Marine Provincial Park Montague Harbour Marine Provincial Park on peaceful Galiano Island is rich in natural and cultural history. White shell beaches, open meadows, tidal lagoons, towering forests, craggy headlands and abundant bird life are just a few of the things that attract visitors to this park in the southern Gulf Islands.

The park starts five metres below sea level and climbs 180 metres to a steep rocky precipice. Visitors can moor their boats to one of the 35 buoys in sheltered Montague Harbour or come by ferry and camp in one of the scenic vehicle-accessible or walk-in campsites. The park is the perfect place to enjoy a picnic or afternoon of exploration. Located within the park is Gray Peninsula, which was inhabited by First Nations peoples before the arrival of Spanish explorer Dionisio Galiano in 1792. Skirting the northwest edge of the peninsula is a spectacular rock ledge that was carved into rippling patterns by the movement of glaciers thousands of years ago.

Montague Harbour, with its sheltered waters and abundant salmon and shellfish, is heir to a rich history. The white shell beach on the north side of the park marks one of several shell middens – evidence of native occupation dating back more than 3,000 years. Castaway shells left by centuries of harvesting form berms on the foreshore in many areas of the park. Wave action erodes the middens, crushes the shells and redeposits them to create Montague’s white shell beaches. Archaeological excavations of these protected middens have unearthed arrows, spearheads and stone carvings, helping to unravel the stories of earlier cultures.

Montague Harbour is a delight for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers in any season, but particularly during the long hot days of summer. Naturalists and bird watchers enjoy a climate and ecology found nowhere else, making Galiano Island a haven for many rare and protected plants and more than 130 species of birds. The waters around Montague Harbour attract flocks of wintering birds including diving ducks like scoters, buffleheads, goldeneyes and mergansers.

Special Features:
On the northwest edge of Gray Peninsula is a spectacular rock ledge that was carved into rippling patterns by the movement of glaciers thousands of years ago. The park also features a salt water marsh between the main campground and Gray Peninsula, and evidence of First Nations culture that dates back more than 3,000 years. Middens are located in the north side of the park and in the harbour.

Park Size: 97 hectares

Special Notes:
Middens are protected under BC law. Do not disturb these archaeological sites. Help protect them by accessing the beach using the stairs where ever possible.

In your exploration, please remember to carefully replace overturned rocks in their original position. Look but do not touch or remove any shells or marine organisms from the park.

Maximum vessel length for the dock is 11 metres or 36 feet.
Dock Facilities Use Fee: $2.00 per metre / night
Mooring (to buoy) Fee: $12.00 per vessel / night

Campground Dates of Operation
All dates are subject to change without notice
Opening and Closing Campground Dates:
(campground is accessible but may not offer full services such as water, security, etc.)
Year round
Campground Dates with Full Services and Fees: March 15 – October 31
Winter fee from November 1 – March 14; no services
Campground Reservable Dates: May 15 – August 31
Total Number of Vehicle Accessible Campsites: 28 total with 13 drive-in and 15 park/walk-in
Number of Reservable Campsites, if applicable:
100% Reservable
Note: The above information is for the campground only. Park users can still walk into the park if conditions such as weather permit. Check the "Attention Visitor Notice" above for park alerts.

Reservations

All vehicle accessible and walk-in campsite and group site reservations must be made through Discover Camping. When reservations are not available all campsites function as first-come, first-served.

Make A Reservation

Campsite Reservations:
Campsite reservations are accepted for 13 drive-in sites and 15 walk-in sites. First-come, first-served sites are not available from May 15 to August 31.

Group Camp Reservations:
Group campsite reservations are accepted at this park for dates starting March 15 to October 30.
Back to Top

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. Montague Harbour Marine Provincial Park is located on the southwest side of Galiano Island approximately 10 km northwest of Sturdies Bay. BC Ferries provides vehicle and passenger service to Sturdies Bay from Swartz Bay on Vancouver Island and from Tsawwassen, south of Vancouver. The park is located on Montague Park Road; follow signs to the park from the ferry terminal. Boaters can reference marine chart #3442, #3462, #3463 and #3473 for more information on this area. Nearby communities include: Galiano Island, Saltspring Island, Victoria, Nanaimo, Duncan, Vancouver.

Maps and Brochures

Any maps listed are for information only – they may not represent legal boundaries and should not be used for navigation.
Back to Top

Nature and Culture

  • History: Montague Harbour, with its sheltered waters and abundant salmon and shellfish, has a rich human history. The white shell beach on the north side of the park marks one of several shell middens (refuse heaps) that indicate native occupation that dates back more than 3,000 years. Castaway shells left by centuries of harvesting form berms on the foreshore in many areas of the park. Wave action erodes the middens, crushes the shells and redeposits them to create Montague’s white shell beaches. Middens contain many of the archaeological clues that help to unravel the stories of earlier cultures. Middens are protected by law. Do not disturb these archaeological sites.
  • Cultural Heritage: The arrival of the Spanish explorer, Captain Galiano, in 1792 marked the European discovery of the Gulf Islands. Montague Harbour, named for a naval officer, first appeared on a British surveying chart around 1859. Gray Peninsula was settled in the late 1890s by Captain Gray, who cultivated an orchard that supplied fruit to residents in Victoria. Remnants of this old orchard can still be found.
  • Conservation: Montague Park is rimmed by diverse shoreline – on the open shore, the shifting surface of sand and shells prevents large plants and animals from making their homes. Acorn barnacles grow in intertidal zones, together with the giant barnacle, edible mussel and Japanese oyster. At low tide scores of ochre sea stars can be seen on the rocks, feeding on barnacles, mussels and sea snails such as the whelk and periwinkle.
    A rich habitat of flora and fauna can be viewed in the small salt marsh on Gray’s Peninsula. A lush mixture of Douglas fir, western red cedar, grand fir and arbutus characterize the park. Skirting the northwest of the peninsula is a spectacular rock ledge that thousands of years ago was carved into rippling patterns by the movement of glaciers.
  • Wildlife: The forest, rocky coastline and rich tidal lagoon attract many birds year-round. Great Blue Herons, glaucous-winged gulls, black oystercatchers, northwestern crows, belted kingfisher and bald eagles can often be seen scavenging and soaring over the seas in search of a meal. Horse clams, littleneck clams and butter clams find a safe sanctuary by burrowing beneath the shifting sands on the open shore.
  • General Wildlife, Marine & Outdoor Ethics Information
Back to Top

Management Planning

Management Planning Information
Back to Top

Activities Available at this Park

Canoeing

Canoeing

Montague Harbour Marine Provincial Park offers canoeing and kayaking opportunities for more experienced paddlers. Paddlers should be aware of ocean currents and check weather forecasts before heading out. Montague Harbour is both a destination and a starting off point for kayakers wanting to explore the Gulf Islands.
Cycling

Cycling

Bicycles must keep to roadways and are not permitted on trails. Bicycle helmets are mandatory in British Columbia.
Fishing

Fishing

Saltwater/ocean fishing is permitted, subject to closures. A permanent shellfish closure is in effect due to poor water quality within Montague Harbour. All anglers should check the current regulations issued by Fisheries and Oceans Canada prior to fishing. Anyone fishing or angling in British Columbia must have an appropriate licence.
Rockfish Conservation Areas occur within this park. Fishing activities are limited in Rockfish Conservation Areas. Before you go fishing please refer to the Rockfish Conservation Area descriptions available from Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO).
Hiking

Hiking

There are a variety of well-maintained walking trails in Montague Harbour Provincial Marine Park. Routes lead along Shell Beach and around Gray Peninsula. These easy trails offer spectacular views of the surrounding islands, local marine life and wildlife. For your own safety and the preservation of the park, obey posted signs and keep to designated trails. Shortcutting trails destroys plant life and soil structure.
Interpretive Programs

Interpretive Programs

Montague Harbour Provincial Marine Park offers scheduled interpretive programs. The Floating Nature House offers interpretation programs through the summer – for details, click here.
For employment opportunities as a Park Interpreter, please contact k2parks@shaw.ca or fax a resume to 1-877-559-2115.
Pets on Leash

Pets on Leash

Pets/domestic animals must be on a leash at all times and are not allowed in beach areas or park buildings. 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

This park offers ocean swimming opportunities; however the water is very cold. Bring good footwear for the gravel beach. There are no lifeguards on duty at provincial parks.
Back to Top

Facilities Available at this Park

Boat Launch

Boat Launch

This park has a boat launch, located at the north end of the park; follow the main road past the drive-in campsites. Dock facilities and mooring buoys are located within Montague Harbour and are accessible from the south. Boats can also anchor in Montague Harbour.
Dock Facilities Use Fee: $2.00 per metre / night
Mooring (to buoy) Fee: $12.00 per vessel / night
Campfires

Campfires

This park has campfire time restrictions:
Cooking fires are allowed from 7:00 am – 9:00 am; 11:00 am – 1:00 pm; and 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm. Small campfires are permitted after 7:00 pm. These restrictions will improve air quality and firewood conservation while still permitting fires. Visitors must use campfire rings, which are provided at each campsite. Limited burning hours or campfire bans may be implemented.

During the camping season, firewood can be purchased from the Park Facility Operator. Fees for firewood are set locally and may vary. To preserve vegetation and ground cover, please don’t gather firewood from the area around your campsite or elsewhere in the park. Dead wood is an important habitat element for many plants and animals and it adds organic matter to the soil. You can conserve firewood and air quality by keeping your campfire small.
Drinking Water

Drinking Water

Cold water taps are located throughout the park. Water is available from March 15 to October 31. This water is treated and safe to drink.
View the Annual Drinking Water System Report [pdf]: Montague
Group Camping

Group Camping

There is one walk-in group campsite at this park, located behind the walk-in sites and overlooking the lagoon. There are two wood-burning stoves and a stand-up barbeque for the group use. Group camping reservations are accepted at this park.

Youth group camping charges per night are $1/person (6+), with a $50 minimum and $150 maximum.

Regular group camping charges per night are the base rate for the site, which is $70.00/group site/night, plus $4/adult (16+, minimum charge for 15 adults), plus $1/child (6-15).

Picnic Areas

Picnic Areas

This park has a day-use/picnic area. As you enter the park, head straight past the drive-in campsites to an open grassy field beside the boat launch. Picnic tables and pit toilets can be found in the day-use area.
Pit or Flush Toilets

Pit or Flush Toilets

There are 5 sets of male and female pit toilets located throughout the campsite.
Vehicle Accessible Camping

Vehicle Accessible Camping

This park offers 14 vehicle accessible campsites located within the forested area, adjacent to the beach and day-use area. Campsite reservations are encouraged, as there are no “first-come, first-served” sites available. Montague Harbour is open year round; a winter fee is charged and limited services are available in the off-season.
Vehicle Accessible Camping Fee: $21.00 per party / night
BC Senior’s Rate (day after Labour Day to June 14 only): $10.50 per senior party/night. Read the User Fees Policy for information on Senior Camping Discounts.
Walk-In/Wilderness Camping

Walk-In/Wilderness Camping

15 walk-in/cycle in sites are available to the left as you enter the park, above the parking lot near the wharf. These sites are situated in the forest above Montague Harbour. Campsite reservations are accepted for all 15 walk-in sites.
Walk/Cycle-in Frontcountry Camping Fee: $21.00 per party / night
Wheelchair Access

Wheelchair Access

Some facilities in the park are wheelchair accessible.
Winter Camping

Winter Camping

14 drive-in sites are available located within the forested area, adjacent to the beach and day-use area and 15 walk-in/cycle in sites are available to the left as you enter the park, above the parking lot near the wharf. These sites are situated in the forest above Montague Harbour.
Drive-in and Walk/Cycle-in Frontcountry Camping Fee: $11.00 per party / night