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Prince Albert National Park

Backcountry Campgrounds - Accessible by trail or water, not vehicle accessible

Paddling on the Kingsmere River is one way to access the Kingsmere Lake and Bagwa Canoe Route camping areas.
© Parks Canada

Whether you want a short hike or multi-day paddling excursion, Prince Albert National Park has something for every adventurer!

Stay at one of the 14 designated backcountry campgrounds and enjoy all the wonders of the backcountry with the benefits of a few simple comforts. Each campground is complete with picnic tables, pit toilets, firewood and bear caches. Some sites are now equipped with a newer “bear bar” style of cache requiring you to string up your supplies on a pole using rope.

Prince Albert National Park’s designated backcountry camping sites are located in 4 different wilderness areas. Backcountry permits are required for all overnight stays and registration is done at the Visitor Centre or South Gate before departure. Backcountry fees apply and sites are registered to campers on a “first come first served” basis.

Kingsmere Lake and Grey Owl Trail Campgrounds 
Whether you are planning a pilgrimage to Grey Owl’s cabin or a short escape from modern life, the Kingsmere Lake Backcountry Campgrounds offer you a lakeside camping experience you’ll remember for a lifetime.
Bagwa Canoe Route Campgrounds
A place with no motor boats, a place of peace, a place for paddlers. The Bagwa Canoe Route Campgrounds offer you a true backcountry experience.
 Crean Lake Campgrounds
Accessible only by water the Crean Lake Campgrounds are the perfect home base for an aquatic adventure in Prince Albert National Park.
Southern Area Campgrounds 
Hiking or trail riding into the South Area Campgrounds in Prince Albert National Park will give you fresh perspective on this transition zone from aspen parkland to boreal forest

Group Camping

Sandy Lake, Westwind and Northend are designated group camping sites and are available to educational groups. Call the Visitor Centre for more information and to make a reservation.

Random Backcountry Camping

With over 3800 km² of protected, unspoiled wilderness, the Park offers all adventurers the opportunity to use their wilderness skills. Random backcountry camping is a great way to see the Park without the ‘crowds’. Just remember:

  • Register at the Visitor Centre prior to your trip.
  • You must camp further than two kilometres from any public highway or designated campground in Prince Albert National Park*.

*With the exception of these lakes –Waskesiu, Kingsmere, Ajawaan, Bagwa, Lily, Clare, Lavallee, Crean and Lost Lake, where you must camp in a designated campground.

Backcountry Safety, Rules and Etiquette

When traveling in the backcountry BE PREPARED FOR ALL EMERGENCIES! Backcountry travelers in all seasons should be self-reliant and fully prepared to deal with any mishaps which may arise on their outings. Visit the Prince Albert National Park Visitor Safety pages for information and tips on how to make your back country adventure safe and enjoyable.

For your safety and the safety of others please ensure that you practice safe camping and observe the following regulations:

  • All overnight visitors must register at the Visitor Centre* in Waskesiu prior to departure. A park use permit will be issued and backcountry camping fees apply.
    * Campers may register for South Area Campgrounds at the Prince Albert National Park South Gate entrance on Highway #263 
  • Campers must agree to abide by all campground rules and regulations as provided at time of registration.
  • All garbage must be packed out of the backcountry.
  • Place your tent only on the sand or gravel camping pad.
  • Use bear caches for all animal attractants (food, garbage and toiletries).
  • Use only wood provided at the campgrounds, do not gather deadfall and remember to bring an axe.
  • Pit toilets are located at the campgrounds and should be used for the disposal of grey water.
  • Water is obtained from the lake - boiling before use is recommended.
  • A National Park fishing license is required by anglers. Available at the Visitor Centre, entry gates or any campground kiosk. Lake Trout endorsement are available only at the Visitor Centre in Waskesiu or at South Gate.
  • Registered backcountry campers are permitted to deposit fish offal into Kingsmere and Crean Lakes at a minimum depth of 6 metres (20 feet.)
  • Before starting your trip, please read the ‘Bear Country' brochure available at all park offices.