Windsor Lake Rec Campsite

A Favourite Camping Spot

This was a tough choice. There's many road accessible lakes and nice rec campsites, big & small, among the Powell Lakes, NE of Powell River. For some variety, and because it's a real sweet spot, I chose to go for this tiny (~3 tents), gorgeous site on north Windsor Lake, part of the Powell Forest Canoe Route, accessible only via a 1km portage trail (unless you're travelling by canoe). Getting here is a good backroads ride north off the Sunshine Coast highway.


As you can see below, this site also has one of the greatest examples of backwoods architecture, with an outhouse carved out of a stump.

One of my all time backwoods architecture favourites - a classic. From the tiny canoe route lakeside camp site on north Windsor Lake.  

Windsor Lake Rec Camp | outhouse carved from stump | bikepacking north Sunshine Coast

One has to ride north along the west shores of Goat Lake Welwood FSR past Lois, Nanton and Ireland lakes before reaching remote Windsor Lake. ~1/2km past the north end, shortly before reaching Goat Lake, you'll see signs for the portage route between the 2 lakes, and a rough road off to the right where, after a few hundred metres, you'll find the trail south into N Windsor Lake. Parts of the trail were rideable, others required pushing the bike (I don't recall needing to carry the bike & gear). There's a dock looking down the lake (see pic, great view) and several picnic tables amongst big trees. I was there off season, and had the place to myself, but no doubt in season, you'll meet interesting company from the canoe circuit.  

There's a Fav backroads ride into these lakes NE of Powell River - here's the link. And if you're interested to learn more about the canoe circuit, there's lots of websites, but here's one from the local tourism folks. 

Windsor Lake Rec Camp | Powell Forest Canoe Circuit | cycle touring north Sunshine Coast

Looking south down Windsor Lake from the campsite shore. Dock serves as a canoe launch (and, I expect, summertime swimming centre)

I debated choosing Goat Lake Rec Camp, at the south end of Goat Lake a few kms to the north. There's a very cool camping site at the south end of Goat Lake (the other end of this portage). Getting down the steep slopes surrounding the Goat Lake, though, is a real tough go - leave your bike on top (doing it with a canoe must be an #!%#). Getting in with the bike is easier if you ride north a further 600-700m to a road branching back and down to the left. It intersects the portage trail about halfway down. For the adventurous, maps show another wilderness canoe camping site, with walk-in trail, further north along the east shores of Goat lake, which I have not yet tried to visit.  

Routes to Windsor Lake Rec Campsite
Location & route map | Windsor Lake Rec Camp | cycle touring north Sunshine Coast

Portage trail into Windsor Lake North Rec Camp. This was ~ 1km. Note the 2 cross bar frames in the foreground: these are for canoe portagers. They carry canoes on their heads/shoulders, and can duck down to leave the canoes rested on the cross frames to take a break. I was able to ride ~1/2 the trail in, and pushed the rest.

Windsor Lake Rec Camp | portage trail for canoe circuit | bikepacking north Sunshine Coast