Over the past couple of years I've been scouting out a number of different lakes in the vicinity of Harrison, not too far outside of Chilliwack. In this On The Road series I've brought you to these spots: the campsite on the East side of Harrison lake, nearby Elbow Lake and Sasquatch Provincial Park. On a recent trip up the West side of Harrison Lake I came upon what is now a new favourite: 20 Mile Bay!
It's exactly 20 miles (32 kilometres) from the beginning of the unpaved Sts’ailes Forest Service Road, and is located on the West side of Harrison Lake. My Highlander Hybrid handles the drive with ease, and since it's not too steep of a grade I would say most vehicles with AWD would be able to make it in. And don't be alarmed by the image below! There are points in the drive where you pass by areas that were devastated by that huge Harrison wildfire you might remember from a couple years back. The destination is more pristine, and it's actually super interesting to pass through these zones and witness the rawness of what happens during a fire. I would venture to say that it's actually a beautiful sight, mostly because I've walked many of these scenes a year after they've happened and to see the flora and fauna pushing its way back slowly is some sort of magic.
I was actually camping at nearby Wood Lake and the company who manages that site told me to check out this one further down the road. I couldn't believe I'd never been here before; it's a long ways down a dirt road but well worth it. Old growth trees surround the campsites, and it feels a thousand miles away from the city.
There are 52 individual sites here, and half of them can be reserved in advance. The other half are first come, first served. They're $15 per night.
Most of the sites are tucked into the trees, with views out onto the lake.
The beaches surrounding it are full of wildlife, as well as the ghosts of old logging operations. It's also been rumoured that there's a natural hot spring in this bay, which makes the water warmer than most parts.
There are a bunch of trails and forks in the dirt road to find your way down. Plenty of exploring to be done here, or just sitting in a lawn chair if that's your thing.
The spot is fantastic and I would definitely recommend heading out for a couple of nights this summer. If you can make it during a weekday it's more likely you'll get a good spot. You can make reservations and learn more HERE.