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One of the many great things about living in Vancouver is that there are mountains right on our doorstep. In 1.5 hours you can go from downtown to backcountry wilderness! This Easter weekend Thom and I headed up to do some Mount Seymour camping and were treated to the most incredible sunset and views with absolutely no one else around. If you’re looking for awesome camping near Vancouver then consider camping at Mt Seymour. There isn’t a lot of free camping in BC, especially around Vancouver, but this option is great!
Check out the information below to make sure it’s right for you and, as always, remember to leave no trace.
About Mt Seymour Provincial Park
Mount Seymour Provincial Park is just 30 minutes from downtown Vancouver which makes it a great destination for those last-minute hiking plans, or days you don’t want to travel too far. Camping on Mt Seymour, you’ll get amazing views of Vancouver, Mount Baker (on a clear day!), the Indian Arm Provincial Park, and many many mountains in the Coastal Mountain range.
One of the more popular hikes in the park is the Mt Seymour hike which takes you past two other main peaks before arriving atop Mt Seymour. There are also several lakes in the park.
Lower mountain trails are popular with mountain bikers, and those in the upper sections of the park are reserved strictly for hikers.
You can hike in Mt Seymour all year round (although you’ll need snowshoes in the winter) and those trails marked by BC Parks do not require a permit or pass.
This Vancouver camping spot isn’t known about by many, but it’s the best option for backcountry camping near Vancouver.
Where can you camp at Mt Seymour?
Looking to know the rules for Mount Seymour Provincial Park Camping? Here’s the info!
While there’s no official Mount Seymour campground, you can camp anywhere north of Brockton Point as this area is considered the backcountry. You are not allowed to camp anywhere south of Brockton Point. That means you practically make your own Mount Seymour campsite.
Camping in Mt Seymour Provincial Park is dispersed camping with no facilities. You must remember to pack out everything you take in and there are no campfires allowed, regardless of the time of year. when you’re enjoying Mt Seymour backcountry camping.
We camped between Brockton Point and First Pump.
How much does it cost to camp at Mt Seymour?
Camping north of Brockton Point at Mt Seymour is completely free! To enjoy Mount Seymour free camping you’ll need a Mount Seymour backcountry camping permit but that’s it.
Things to know before camping at Mt Seymour
- The mountainous backcountry of Mt Seymour can be extremely rugged and unforgiving.
- Mt. Seymour Resorts Ltd. requests that anyone parking overnight post emergency contact information, including departure and expected return time, in a visible location on the dashboard of their vehicle. Mount Seymour overnight parking is clearly signposted and you must park in the designated parking lot (the one further away from the washrooms).
- Mountain weather conditions often change suddenly and dramatically. Be prepared.
- If mist and fog should close in and you become lost stay where you are until the weather clears or you are found. Never leave the trail!
- Remember the 10 essentials
- If camping in winter be sure to check the avalanche risk.
- There used to be a Mount Seymour group campsite, but this has been repurposed in 2020.
How to get to Mt Seymour
Getting to Mt Seymour from downtown Vancouver is very easy and takes only 30 minutes when there’s little traffic. You’ll park up in the Mt Seymour ski area (in winter you must use the designated backcountry car park) so if using GPS then put in Mt Seymour Ski area. Putting in ‘Dog Mountain’ or similar will likely send you a different, inaccessible, route.
Depending on where in Vancouver you’re coming from you can either go over Lions Gate Bridge and on to the Trans Canada Highway eastbound, or over the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge and onto the Mt Seymour Parkway.
Mount Seymour – Brockton Point winter route
The trail to Mt Seymour and Brockton Point is very well marked even in winter. It’s also a popular route so it’s likely you’ll see other people coming and going as you hike. In the winter it’s popular with snowshoers and backcountry skiers too.
From the Mount Seymour parking area, you’ll head uphill alongside the ski slopes. Walking on the ski slopes is not permitted for obvious reasons, and the fact that the slopes are owned by the resort and the trail is managed by BC Parks.
This first park of uphill has some pretty steep sections and you hike through the forest and it’s quite well covered so you won’t get many views to begin with. But, as you emerge from the trees and look to the right you’ll be able to see the chairlifts in the ski resort.
You’ll pass a couple of lakes on the way although in winter they’re usually covered in snow. Or, at the very least, a big layer of ice!
After a couple more steep inclines (pretty tricky when the snow is icy or slushy) you’ll arrive at Brockton Peak with incredible 360-degree views! Head slightly north from here and pick yourself a good spot for the night if you’re camping.
Trail stats & info for Seymour mountain camping
Mount Seymour Trail map
For camping at Mount Seymour, this trail map (click to enlarge) gives you an idea of the hiking trails available at Mt Seymour Provincial Park and where to camp.
Brockton Point isn’t marked on this map so I suggest using an app like All Trails to get a better idea of where you can and can’t camp.
What to pack for your Mt Seymour camping trip
Here are a few essentials items you won’t want to forget! Check out my day hiking packing list here.
- A tent
- Sleeping bag – this is the one I used (review here)
- Sleeping mat
- Lots of warm layers
Would you go camping on Mt Seymour? Camping on Mount Seymour is one of my favourite weekend activities, so I hope you try it!