Province wide campfire bans in place - learn more.  Campers know before you go camping.

SilverStar Mountain Resort. Photo Credit Destination BC/Blake Jorgenson

5 BC Places to Visit for Outdoor Fun and Winter Camping

If you thought that camping and RVing was devoted solely to those months without snow, you would be wrong. British Columbia is fast becoming a destination for RVing and camping, particularly with those who live in colder climes. Here are five fun things to do and places to camp in BC’s winter months.

Winter Activities On British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast

Beach walks and beachcombing make for enjoyable outings in the off-season | Sunshine Coast Tourism/Shayd Johnson

From the artistic community of Gibsons northeast to the harbour village of Lund, mountains meet the sea along the Sunshine Coast, a mainland area uniquely only accessible by ferry, boat or plane. Winters are typically mild and range from 2 to 10ºC (20 to 50°F) during the day. In lower elevations, rains keep the flora and forests lush, while higher areas see snow.

There’s plenty to do both inside and out if you’re RVing here in the winter. Make sure to get out on the water and head up some slopes. You will be rewarded with majestic views and an excellent chance of seeing animals in their natural environment. Read more.

Five Spots to Ice Fish and Camp this Winter in British Columbia

Photo Courtesy of Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC
Photo Courtesy of Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC

Ice fishing is often overlooked as a winter activity, especially if you live in southern B.C.  But fishing opportunities do not stop when the temperature freezes – they only get more exciting. Ice fishing is a very social sport and requires only a limited amount of gear or experience. The entire lake becomes accessible without the need of a boat and you don’t need the often complicated casting techniques required in other fisheries. It’s as simple as drilling a hole and dropping a line. Try some winter camping while you’re at it; there are many parks open year-round close to great hard water lakes. Here are our top 5 spots to try ice fishing this winter with RV spots close by. Read more.

Winter RV Adventure for Camping Newbies at Sunshine Valley & Manning Park, BC

Tobogganing at Manning Park

If only we had known how amazing RVing in the winter is, we would have taken this trip a long time ago! Our journey started in earnest on a Wednesday morning when we had made arrangements to pick up a rental RV from CanaDream. We had already checked in online five days before, uploaded required documents and information, paid our deposit and reviewed demo videos so we knew all about the RV we were renting before we arrived. Upon arrival, we were greeted by friendly staff who checked that all of our details were in order and then my husband and I did a thorough walk-through of the unit. Read more.

5 Ways to Enjoy Winter in Wine Country, Okanagan, British Columbia

SilverStar Mountain Resort. Photo Credit Destination BC/Blake Jorgenson
Silver Star Mountain Resort. Photo Credit Destination BC/Blake Jorgenson

As cooler temperatures emerge, and the snow blankets the vineyards, the valley transforms from a sun-soaked paradise to the ultimate winter destination. From champagne powder to frozen waterfalls to theatrical sleigh ride shows, the winter can be a magical time to explore the Okanagan. Read more.

Vancouver Island, BC Off-Season Adventures

Ocean View Skiing at Mt. Washington, BC
Ocean View Skiing at Mt. Washington, BC

‘Canada’s Mediterranean’, is how I like to refer to Central Vancouver Island. It offers more year-round outdoor recreational opportunities in mind-blowing scenery than I’ll ever have time to enjoy in one lifetime. But I’m trying – and the best part is that so many activities are absolutely free!

To get you started let me give you just a couple of very different ‘cool season’ activities on different parts of the Island, along with two fantastic year-round RV parks located close to each mini adventure. Read more.

TIP: If you find this blog interesting why not subscribe to the enewsletter and never miss another story!

For places to camp in BC in the winter go to winter camping.

Share your BC  travel and camping photos using hashtag #campinbc

It’s always a great day to #CampinBC

First Time RVing In Winter – What To Know About Renting An RV

Canadream RV at a campsite in the winter
RVing in a campsite winter wonderland!

My husband’s family lived in the Arctic Circle before he was born, and his formative years were spent in Manitoba. So it should come as no surprise that he wants to go camping … in the winter.

I, on the other hand,  don’t really “do winter”. I’m more of a rainforest girl. But I love to camp and miss it all winter long.

Enter the perfect solution, or so we hope … a winter RV trip. All the adventure of camping, all the chill of winter, but with the comforts of home.

This winter we’re going to rent an RV from the good folks at CanaDream and take a short trip.  I have to admit I’m totally out of my element so step one: book the RV.

In order to feel better prepared for the RV experience, I posed some questions to the representative at CanaDream, who was extremely helpful. Here’s our conversation, which has some good procedural advice for any first-time RVer as well as stuff specific to winter use.

Photo courtesy of CanaDream RV

1. Can we leave our car with you when we pick the RV up?

Yes! Our pick-up location is about half an hour outside of Vancouver and we have a gated lot where you can leave your car.

2. What else happens at pick-up?

All Guests are invited to check in online 5 days before pick up. It is mandatory that you complete online check in as this is where you provide CanaDream with all your details, uploading driver’s license, emergency contacts, you’ll read and accept their terms & conditions and insurance policy, you can add on extras and also pay the mandatory security deposit by credit card. You’ll watch their detailed demo videos so you know all about your RV before you get to the station.  This is really helpful.

You will also select your pick up time and your drop off time from a range of available time slots. Again this is great to help you plan your departure and the return day of your vacation.

On arrival you will simply present your driver’s license, credit card to confirm they match what is in their system and you’ll perform a short self-guided tour (asking any questions that you need) and then you can head off on your road trip! simple.

3. Your Maxi Motorhome RV is a “winter unit” … what does that mean?

The Maxi Motorhome has been specifically designed and built to enable functioning of the RV in temperatures up to -30 degrees Celsius.  With heated and insulated pipes, use of the RV furnace and generator means you can keep the RV warm and frost free, ensuring full use of the bathroom facilities and kitchen water. Giving you the ultimate winter comfort and convenience on the road, the RV comes kitted out with fleece bed linen, insulated curtains and protective floor carpets to enhance the warmth of the unit.  Don’t get this confused with some rental companies who “winterize” their RVs which means they drain all of the water out of the pipes and tanks to ensure the pipes don’t freeze and cause damage when they thaw.  CanaDream is unique in this respect with their RV having an Arctic pack to assist with the use through harsh Canadian winters.

4. Does the unit come fully stocked?

You can chose to rent a Convenience kit which provides you with all the kitchen equipment, bed linen and towels, or you can bring your own if you want to reduce the cost.  Most people take the Convenience kits.

5. What extra items should we bring?

This depends on what you think you will need and of course you are welcome to bring whatever you like to make your trip more comfortable. We recommend that you pack supplies in soft bags so they can be easily stowed in the storage cupboards. I think it’s nice to bring things that make you feel at home. For instance, a favourite pillow. If you have chosen not to take the Convenience kit, you will need to bring everything you require.

6. Is the RV hard to drive? Is there any way to practice?

No. The beauty of these RVs is that they are very easy to drive and as long as you are confident and use a spotter outside to help you reverse and park, you will soon enjoy driving the RV.  They are all equipped with mud and snow tires, so you will have a lot of grip in the winter. We are also happy to provide snow chains.  With any driving in winter make sure you pay attention to the road conditions and don’t take unnecessary risks.

Photo courtesy of CanaDream RV

7. How far can we take the RV? Would we be able to use it to drive someplace for skiing, for instance?

With an RV the requirement is you have to stay on numbered public roads. You can’t take it off-road, or down a logging road, for instance. Not that you would be tempted to in the winter!

Really, though, you should be able to drive the RV as you would with an ordinary vehicle, and so you could take it on a day trip …  keeping in mind (as you would with any vehicle) that you need to check road conditions where you are going.

Well, it looks like we’re one step closer to this crazy dream. Thanks to CanaDream for being so patient with all my questions. I’m starting to get excited for the trip!

TIP: If you find this blog interesting why not subscribe to the enewsletter and never miss another story!

Want to read about their winter camping trip? Read the blog below.

Winter RV Adventure for Camping Newbies at Sunshine Valley & Manning Park, BC

For places to camp in winter check out the Winter Camping Map

Post your BC winter camping and RVing photos at #CampinBC

Top 10 RV Driving Tips – Go RVing Canada

Tips How to Drive an RV

Tips How to Drive an RV

The Camping and RVing BC Coalition speaks to many consumers at RV shows and often has to answer the question “I am new to RVing how difficult is it to drive a larger vehicle such as a 5th wheel or motorhome?”  So we thought let’s ask the experts at Go RVing and they provided us with a Top 10 RV Driving Tips blog… (more…)

Camping Kitchen: Shake and Wake Pancakes

Pancakes and coffee in a motorhome

Shake ‘n’ Wake Pancakes

This family-tested recipe is a great addition to your camp kitchen. Nothing says “vacation” like pancakes. Ditch the measuring tools, bowls and whisks, and use this recipe to serve up from-scratch pancakes while on the road. It can made on a camp stove, in an RV kitchen, or even in a cast-iron pan over the fire. These are thick cakes, almost like scones, and a great hearty breakfast for adventurers. Enjoy! (more…)

RV Adventure Part 2: Reserving the Campsite

A canadream rental RV travelling in the winter

Where to RV in the winter

So the W family has decided to take the plunge and go RVing, for the first time, in winter. With our RV booked (more…)

Published: January 21st, 2014

Connect With Us