Boat-In Camping

Canoes loaded for camping  prepare to launch at the Colonial Creek boat launch. Image Credit: NPS/NOCA/David Snyder
Canoes at Colonial Creek loaded for camping on Diablo Lake.

NPS/NOCA/David Snyder

 

Seclusion, scenery, and still water. Twenty-five boat-in camps dot the backcountry shorelines of North Cascades National Park Complex. On Lake Chelan, explore the shoreline of a water pathway used by human travelers for thousands of years. In the Skagit Valley along State Route 20, visit the hidden coves, islands, and bays of Diablo and and Ross Lakes, both reservoirs created by the dams on the Skagit Hydroelectric Project. Whether you spend a night or a week, boat-in camping within the park complex is a unique experience.

The tables below list the camping options for each lake. Also visit the backcountry permits and Wilderness Trip Planner page, or call a ranger station to help you plan your visit.

 
Lake Chelan Boat-In Camps
These sites are accessed from the Stehekin region. Lake Chelan can experience strong winds and cold water - be prepared. A federal dock permit or a backcountry permit is required at these camps.
 
Camp Number of Sites Elevation Comments
Weaver Point

22

1100

Treated water. Across from the Stehekin Landing by boat. Limited moorage. Access to Stehekin River Trail. Lake Chelan Dock permit required May 1 - October 31.
Manly Wham

1

1100

Lakeshore camp near Bridal Veil Falls. Lake Chelan Dock permit required May 1 - October 31.
Flick Creek

1

1100

Camp also has access to the Lakeshore Trail. Lake Chelan Dock permit required May 1 - October 31.
Purple Point 6 1100 Short walk to campsites. Treated water and flush toilets. Backcountry permits required year round.
 
Group in canoes on Ross Lake
Canoers head out on Ross Lake for an overnight camping trip.

Image courtesy of North Cascades Institute.

Ross Lake Boat-In Camps
Refer to Boating on Ross Lake for information on access, special regulations and tips for the backcountry. Ross Lake can be very windy - be prepared. All boat-in camps on Ross Lake require a backcountry permit for camping.
 
Camp Miles (km) From Ross Dam Miles (km)
From Hozomeen
Number
of Sites

Group
Sites

Trail
Access

Boat
Dock
Green Point

0.8 (1.3)

21.2 (33.9)

5

X

X

X

Cougar Island

2.4 (3.9)

19.6 (31.4)

2

X

Roland Point

3.5 (5.6)

18.5 (29.6)

1

McMillan

4 (6.4)

18 (28.8)

3

X

X

Spencer's

4.3 (6.9)

17.7 (28.3)

2

X

Big Beaver

4.6 (7.4)

17.4 (27.8)

7

X

X

X

May Creek

5 (8)

17 (27.2)

1

X

X

Rainbow Point

6 (9.6)

16 (25.6)

3

X

X

Devil's Junction

9 (14.4)

13 (20.8)

1

X

X

Ten Mile Island

10 (16)

12 (19.2)

3

Dry Creek

10.4 (16.7)

11.6 (18.6)

4

Ponderosa

11 (17.6)

11 (17.6)

2

X

Lodgepole

11.4 (18.4)

10.6 (17)

3

X

X

Lightning Creek Stock Camp

11.8 (18.9)

10.2 (16.3)

2

X

X

Lightning Creek Boat Camp

12 (19.3)

10 (16)

5

X

X

X

Cat Island

13 (20.8)

9 (14.4)

4

X

X

Little Beaver

15 (24)

7 (11.2)

5

X

X

X

Boundry Bay

16.5 (26.5)

5.5 (8.8)

3

X

X

Silver Creek

20 (32)

2 (3.2)

2

X

X

Hozomeen

22 (35)

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Drive in campground
 
Diablo Lake Boat-in Camps

The three boat-in sites on Diablo Lake are some of the most accessible boat-in camping, with a boat launch located at Colonial Creek Campground on State Route 20 providing easy access. The waters of Diablo Lake are especially cold, given the glacial meltwater that spills into the lake. Waters can also be very windy - be prepared. All boat-in camping on Diablo Lake requires a backcountry permit.
 
Camp Miles (km) From
Colonial Creek
Campground
Number
of Sites
Boat
Dock
Buster Brown

2.8 (4.7)

3

X

Hidden Cove

2.6 (4.3)

1

X

Thunder Point

2.0 (3.3)

3

X

 
Canoers on turquoise waters of lake
Glacial melt water, stunning mountain views, and easy access make Diablo Lake a beautiful boating destination.

Image courtesy of North Cascades Institute.

Last updated: February 7, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

810 State Route 20
Sedro-Woolley, WA 98284

Phone:

(360) 854-7200

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