Discover Bowen Island’s Hidden Gem: The Marine-Access Apodaca Park Campsite

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A new campsite has been established on Bowen Island (British Columbia, Canada), offering visitors a chance to pitch their tents in the picturesque Apodaca Park. However, this remote campsite is accessible only by marine travel.

As per a report, BC Parks recently completed the construction of four tent pads in the 12-hectare Apodaca Park, located on Bowen’s east coast. 

The tent pads are available on a first-come-first-served basis for recreational paddlers, such as kayakers, canoers, or paddleboarders. Apodaca Park is now the 10th campsite along the Sea to Sky Marine Trail, which stretches from Horseshoe Bay to Squamish. 

Campsites are hosted by BC Parks and Recreation Sites and Trails BC, with maintenance and support provided by BC Marine Trails and the Sea Kayak Association of BC (SKABC). SKABC played a crucial role in advocating for the addition of the Bowen campsite to the trail, bringing the idea to BC Parks in 2019.

Visitors to the campsite land at a small beach on the far east side of the park, where Optimist Creek meets Howe Sound. To access the tent pads, paddlers follow a short path to a looped trail, with the four campsites situated to the right, overlooking Howe Sound. The left path leads to a compostable pit toilet. BC Parks has announced plans to add a storage rack for kayaks at the site later this summer.

While visiting the campsite, BC Parks requests that travelers remain on the looped campsite trail and avoid wandering the nearby bluffs to protect sensitive vegetation. Campfires are not permitted in the park.

The establishment of the campsites came as a surprise to many on the island, including the municipality. Chief administrative officer Liam Edwards said during a council meeting last week, “It came as a surprise to staff and many people on Bowen that all of a sudden there are four tent pads and a pit toilet at that park, where before there was none. We were surprised that we had not been informed or engaged by BC Parks or their partners,” 

Edwards acknowledged that since Apodaca Park is provincial land, none of the groups, including BC Parks, had any obligation to inform the municipality. He added that “the park plan for Apodaca has always considered the notion of camping in that park” and that common practice is to discuss projects like this with the host community. 

“They believed with the park size, being small, and the location, being very remote and boat-access only, that they didn’t need to inform or engage with any of the neighboring properties or the municipality,” said Edwards.

The Apodaca Park campsite features no running water or additional facilities beyond the tent pads and pit toilet. Visitors are advised to come prepared, considering both the lack of amenities and potentially challenging marine conditions.

This new campsite development at Apodaca Park is part of the growing outdoor recreation industry, which has seen an increase in demand for camping and nature-based experiences. By offering unique, remote camping opportunities, BC Parks and its partners contribute to the sector’s growth, promoting sustainable tourism and encouraging the enjoyment of natural spaces. This development aligns with the broader industry trend of expanding

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