I often get asked by folks visiting the Bella Coola Valley “what should I do/go see?” The drive up Clayton Falls FSR to Blue Jay Lake, with a hike to Mgurr Lake is usually top on my list of suggestions. Mind you my first question is what are you driving?! The Clayton Falls FSR is definitely 4×4 only as its narrow, steep, and rough. If you have a shiny vehicle this road may not be one for you!
Note: From Bella Coola wharf to Blue Jay Lake is about 24km
If you don’t have your own vehicle, or a suitable one for wilderness road travel, there are a couple of local options
- Bella Coola Vehicle Rentals rents 4×4 jeeps and other suitable vehicles.
- There is a new local company just in the process of starting up and they will hopefully be offering UTV (utility terrain vehicle – similar to a side x side) shuttles up the backcountry Forest Service Roads to the Recreation Sites and Trails
- Foot power!! – If you have a nicer vehicle, and are in decent shape, you could drive to the base of the switch backs on the Clayton Falls FSR and then hike up to the MGurr Trail head.
- A quad if you have your own is a great way to get up the Forest Service roads
PLEASE NOTE: If you are driving the backroads, there are many different users including hikers, mountain bikers, quads and off road vehicles – please drive carefully and respectfully and watch for other users.
Typically when we do this trip we park at the Clayton Falls Pass (high point on the road at the top of the switchbacks) and hike in to Mgurr Lake for a swim in the ice cold water!
After a dip and a hike you can then head back to the pass and travel on down to the Blue Jay Lake, BC Parks Campsite. If you have brought a canoe and some paddle boards with you the lake here is a great place to paddle around, swim and fish!!
Blue Jay Lake is well set up for a picnic, with tables, fire rings, and an outhouse.
Just past the Blue Jay Lake is the trail head to the Big Cedar Tree Trail, about a km down the trail is a small little waterfall which is worth the short hike.
For those of you who are adventurous, mountain bike savvy, and have found a way to transport your bike with you ! – I definitely recommend biking back out the road to the Wharf. – The switch backs on the hill are steep, and have loose gravel so expect to crash occasionally! – if you don’t want to tackle the switchbacks, then Mount Fougner Rec site a the bottom makes for a good starting point on a bike as well.
Typically the Mountain bikes beat the shuttle vehicle back to the wharf!
Where a stop at Tsetse Fly gift shop for a Gelato ice cream is a must!!
For more info please contact us at Glacier Creek Outfitting