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Metro Vancouver Park Series: Belcarra Regional Park


Thursday, June 18th, 2009 — 2:14pm PDT
Comments 8

I was inspired to create an entry for my Metro Vancouver Park Series after my recent kayaking trip so here’s what you’ll need to know about exploring Belcarra.

Metrics: 1,100 hectares (2,718 acres) with 22 km of hiking trails and 9.5kms of bike trails.


Lake Sasamat – Photo credit: jkaneda on Flickr

How to Get There: There are three main destinations in Belcarra Regional Park that include Buntzen Lake in Anmore, White Pine Beach at Sasamat Lake, and Belcarra beach / day-use recreational area.

If driving, head into Port Moody and take Ioco Road North/West, continue to 1st Ave and turn right following 1st as it becomes Bedwell Bay Road where you’ll find White Pine Beach (often crowded since it’s so popular). Continue on Bedwell Bay Road to the three-way stop, turn left, then keep right to the picnic area parking lot. By transit you can take the C26 community shuttle from Port Moody Station to Belcarra Road right down to Midden Road or hop off earlier if you have another destination along the way.


Belcarra Picnic Area & Ocean Beach – Photo credit: bchow on Flickr

Features: Dogs are allowed on-leash, there are picnic areas (two covered), concession, swimming, tour bus access, boat launch, and many more facilities.

History: On August 22, 1979 the Village of Belcarra was incorporated but the history of the region runs far deeper. “Belcarra was a traditional camping area for the Tsleil-waututh, the First Nations people whose territory it is in.” [wiki] Mr John Hall from Ireland purchased the a land in 1882 (Lot 229), which included the entire present-day Belcarra picnic site, more than half of the Belcarra Peninsula and all of the Turtlehead and Whiskey Cove areas [pdf]. Hall got caught up in a murder and promised his attorney, William Norman Bole, all of his land in exchange for his defense. “William Norman Bole gave Belcarra its Celtic name that means “the fair land on which the sun shines”. In 1886 he became an MLA and in 1889 a judge of the County Court of New Westminster. In 1908, he subdivided Lot 229 and it was registered in the name of Belcarra-Bedwell Bay Land Company.” [pdf]


Photo credit: Cheryl_J on Flickr

Notes: When I was little I used to affectionately call Belcarra’s picnic area the “goose poop” park because of all the Canadian geese that would hang out on the lawn. There’s plenty of wildlife, from geese to sea stars, and it’s the ideal beach for an afternoon nature walk. Take a stroll along the water’s edge, making discoveries in tide pools, and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.

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8 comments

  1. Rob says:

    This is one of my favourite places in the world, I think. Cheers for the post. 🙂

  2. scales says:

    I used to live in Belcarra, GVRD manage/rent a 5 cottage community and I was lucky to be able to live in one of them in 2006.. Great park with amazing trails! thanks for bringing me back to memory lane!

  3. Raul says:

    *weeps* I was going to go to Buntzen Lake this Sunday with JT so that I could write a guest review for your blog 🙁 you beat me to it! 🙂

  4. Miss604 says:

    @Raul you could still do Buntzen, there’s lots in the area 🙂

  5. Kevin Baggs says:

    Are you sharing icons custom, or are they a plugin?

  6. Jenny says:

    I remember seeing lots of starfish there. And goose poop.

  7. emvandee says:

    I’d forgotten all about Sasamat! Thanks for this – I spent many a summer frolicking in these waters. It’s quite beautiful, and a great place to picnic. Do you know how one would get here by bike? Is it even possible?

  8. […] I decided to go for a short hike and we settled on (finally!) the Buntzen Lake area. I noticed that Rebecca had recently visited Belcarra Regional Park and I wanted to contribute to her Park Series with a post about Buntzen Lake. Photo credit: phobus […]

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