Drenched in sunshine on the sunny north shore of Shuswap Lake, in the interior of British Columbia, the North Shuswap incorporates the picturesque villages of Anglemont, Celista, Lee Creek, Magna Bay, Scotch Creek, Seymour Arm, and St. Ives. Home of the world-famous Adams River salmon run and the beautiful Shuswap Lake Provincial Park, the North Shuswap is a vacation paradise, with stunning views of Shuswap Lake, sheltered bays, wide sandy beaches for picnicking, many campsites, and numerous nature trails.
In this outdoor adventure playground, activities include para-sailing, camping, hiking, biking, horseback riding, golfing, fishing, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, river rafting, nature trails, and wildlife viewing. And, of course, there is boating and swimming in the crystal-clear waters of Shuswap Lake, one of the very few lakes in BC warm enough for easy summer swimming.
The North Shuswap was inhabited by First Nations people for thousands of years before the first white settlers arrived in the area around 1895. Early transportation was by water, and a ferry service was operated between Scotch Creek and Sorrento from 1914 to 1956. Today’s roads began as small trails between homesteads and access to the lake. As the population increased, these trails were widened, a bridge was built at Squilax in 1930, and a gravel road was eventually completed between Scotch Creek and Anglemont (paved in the late 1960s). The pioneering settlers eked out a living by logging, fruit farming, and trapping.
The economy of the North Shuswap is based on tourism, forestry (including value-added wood products), agriculture and service related industries.
Location: The North Shuswap is located on the north shore of Shuswap Lake, in the Thompson Okanagan region of BC. To get to the North Shuswap, take the Squilax Bridge off the Trans-Canada Highway 1, between Chase and Sorrento Sorrento. As you cross the bridge over the Adams River you are in the North Shuswap. Travel east on the paved and well-maintained scenic Squilax-Anglemont Highway, along the north shore of Shuswap Lake. The paved road ends at St. Ives (55 km), and a gravel road continues to the village of Seymour Arm (approximately 75 minutes). Travel time from Kamloops is 1 hour, 2-1/2 hours from Kelowna, and 5 hours from Vancouver.
View map of the area
Anglemont is one of the prettier places in BC, with beautiful views of Shuswap Lake and Copper Island. Peace and tranquility prevail, and summer sunrises are rather special. Anglemont offers first rate snowmobiling on Crowfoot Mountain, and golfing at Anglemont Estates Golf and Country Club.
Celista is a quiet vacation spot with wonderful views and sunsets. There is easy access to parks and the clear and warm lake waters, and winter snowmobiling right to your back door.
Lee Creek is located in a peaceful, pastoral setting near the mouth of the Adams River, adjacent to Roderick Haig-Brown Provincial Park, home to the world’s largest salmon spawning ground. Country lanes, waterfalls, and picnic spots abound in Lee Creek, which is a 5-minute drive north of the Trans-Canada Highway 1.
The small community of Magna Bay is located on magnificent Magna Bay, at the mouth of Ross Creek, between Celista and Anglemont. Wide sandy beach.
A community of approximately 500 permanent residents, Scotch Creek is home to the famous Shuswap Provincial Park. Scotch Creek area offers accommodation, restaurants and pubs, seasonal interest shops, craft galleries, and a variety of family entertainment.
Located at the head of Seymour Arm, this small community has roots that date back to the gold rush. This is where the real wilderness begins and the forests grow right down to the water’s edge. One trail leads to the impressive Seymour Falls, another to Anstey Arm.
The serene community of St. Ives is located on the northwest end of Shuswap Lake Main Arm, at the end of the paved Squilax-Anglemont Road, 29 miles (46 km) from the Trans-Canada Highway 1. Features include a public beach, Horseshoe Bay Park, and safe anchorage is available in Horseshoe Bay.
Located on the northwest end of Seymour Arm, Albas Park has a small 5-site campground south of Blueberry Creek. An undeveloped camping area is found near the mouth of Celesta Creek. A trail begins near Steamboat Bay, follows Celesta Creek upstream for approximately 1.5 km, then crosses the creek and returns to the lake. Noted for a series of beautiful waterfalls and some interesting features from early logging days. Bears are frequent visitors in Albas Park.
Arts and Culture: The North Shuswap is home to many well-known artists and published authors. The work of many talented craftspeople can be found at venues year-round, at fairs throughout the year, and unique shops display local arts and crafts. The North Shuswap has a long-standing reputation of having some of the finest musicians in the region. You can attend the monthly coffee houses and spend the evening making new friends while being entertained with the finest music.
Drop by to visit Alf the miniature mule, Hairy the llama, Cheeko and Rosa the donkeys, and all their friends at the Petting Farm on Bragg Road in Celista.
Shuswap Lake Marine Provincial Park is among the most popular boating and canoeing locations in the Southern Interior. Shuswap Marine is comprised of sites located around the perimeter of Shuswap Lake. All locations are popular for fishing and water sports; hiking and nature study are popular at some sites. Some sites are road accessible, but most are water-access only.
Shuswap Lake Provincial Park is wildly popular. Everything you need for summer fun is right here: camping, picnicking, fishing, boating, paddling, swimming, hiking, windsurfing, sailing, houseboating, water-skiing, nature study, photography, visitor programs, and bicycling. With 7 miles (12 km) of paved ing is lovely – Douglas fir interwoven with aspen. Paddle around the mouth of the Seymour River to watch the salmon spawn from mid-August to mid-September. Also nearby are the remains of a gold-rush town. Go almost 11 miles (17 km) on Hwy 1 from Chase northeast to Scotch Creek, then take the 40-mile (65-km) logging road to the park.
Silver Beach Provincial Park is located at the end of a long, gravel road at the head of Seymour Arm on Shuswap Lake. Its size and distance from Highway 1 keep many visitors at bay. Check it out for yourself; it’s worth it. This part of the lake is blessed with sandy beaches. Houseboaters come here to get away from it all. The park’s forest setting is lovely – Douglas fir interwoven with aspen. There’s an excellent interpretive area that explains the whole phenomenal trek.
Roderick Haig-Brown Provincial Park: Roderick Haig-Brown was a magistrate, writer, angler, and conservationist dedicated to preserving, among other wildlife, the sockeye salmon so key to British Columbia’s economy. This 2,440-acre (988-ha) park encompasses the entire length of the Adams River, the site of the largest sockeye salmon run on the West Coast. Many wild critters live in this park, among them bears, beavers, and river otters. To get to Roderick Haig-Brown Park, travel east on Hwy 1 from Kamloops for 41 miles (66 km) to Monte Creek. Follow the signs north to Squilax. The park is about 3 miles (5 km) north of here.
Cinnemousun Narrows Provincial Park is located where all four arms of Shuswap Lake converge at Cinnemousun Narrows. The 176-hectare park features a beautiful stretch of sandy beach and four wharves for mariners. There are 28 walk-in campsites in the park, and basic facilities are provided, including a marine sani-station.
Other smaller parks in the North Shuswap include Adams Lake (Bush Creek) Park, Celista Provincial Park, Horseshoe Bay Park, and Albas Park.
Camping: Those mariners interested in an extended visit will find 14 campsites, some of which are vehicle-accessible, but most are the preserve of boaters and paddlers. Good vehicle-access sites on Shuswap Lake include Shuswap Lake Provincial Park, about 12 miles (20 km) northeast of Hwy 1 at Squilax.
Wilderness campsites with basic facilities include Two Mile Creek, Albas, and Fowler Point on the northeast shore of Seymour Arm; Anstey View on the northwest shore; and Four Mile Creek and Anstey Beach on the south shore of Anstey Arm. The North Shuswap campgrounds can accommodate approximately 5,000 campers when full.
Golf: Anglemont Estates Golf Course and Country Club is a 9-hole, 1,803-yard golf course overlooking the beautiful Shuswap Lake in Anglemont. The full-facility golf course includes a driving range and marina pick-up service. Golf Vacations in British Columbia.
River Rafting: Whitewater rafting on the Adams River and nearby Thompson River varies from family adventure floats to adrenaline-pumping trips through the boiling rapids of the Weir and Devil’s Door. Tours can be arranged in Scotch Creek.
Hiking: In the Shuswap Highlands region east of Kamloops, hike the gentle trails in Niskonlith Lake Provincial Park in fall to see a host of migratory birds.
Fishing: Well known in the area are Kamloops trout, a unique strain of trout that put on an eye-popping, acrobatic performance for fly-fishers skilled enough to hook one. These wild rainbow trout, native to central and south-central Interior regions of the province, are the prize in Silver Beach Provincial Park, at Seymour Arm. For more information on angling in the Kamloops region, contact the Kamloops Visitor Centre.
Boat Launch Facilities: On Salmon Arm, launch at the public wharf in Canoe, about 4 miles (6 km) east of Salmon Arm on Hwy 1, or in Sicamous, 13 miles (21 km) farther east on Hwy 1. There’s also gravel-road access from Hwy 1 to Seymour Arm at Silver Beach Provincial Park.
Rentals: Kayak and canoe rentals are available in Celista, boat rentals in Scotch Creek, and ATVs and snowmobile can be rented in Anglemont (wilderness tours available).