Syringa Provincial Park is situated on the east side of Lower Arrow Lake at the foot of the Norns Range of the Columbia Mountains. The lake is actually part of the Columbia River that was widened and deepened through construction of the Hugh Keenleyside Dam, a short distance downstream.
Across Arrow Lake from the park’s broad pebble beach rises the Christina Range of the Monashee Mountains. This 4,417-hectare park is named for Syringa Creek, which flows into Lower Arrow Lake, near the park’s southend boundary. The “Syringa” or Mock Orange, a shrub indigenous to the area, blooms in the early spring and emits an exchanting bouquet as recognizable as an orange itself. The area is also important to the Okanagan, Shuswap and Ktunaxa-kinbasket First Nations, who use it for cultural and spiritual purposes.
Ponderosa Pine and bunchgrass are usually not found in this area, but the moderately warm and dry climate allows them to grow, making the vegetation in the park quite unique. The park also provides habitat for Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep, elk and deer.
The park offers a variety of recreational activities including swimming, waterskiing, canoeing and kayaking. Fishing for rainbow trout, Dolly Varden and kokanee is also popular. A moderately difficult 4km Yellow Pine Nature Trail leads to a lookout behind the park offering views of the beautiful surrounding scenery. Along with two boat ramps, an archaeological site, three beaches and outdoor nature displays, this park offers interpretive programs most afternoons and evenings.
Syringa Provincial Park is one of the largest provincial campgrounds in the area, with 63 vehicle/tent campsites including a day-use/picnicking area, and plenty of things to do. Basic facilities are provided – some facilities are wheelchair accessible, including a specially designated campsite for the disabled. The park is open from April to October.
Syringa Provincial Park is located on Syringa Creek, 12 miles (19 km) northwest of Castlegar via the Robson exit off Highway 3A.
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