Camping and Hiking with Dogs in BC and Alberta

A Tracks And Trails visitor, or ***warning: this is a pun*** maybe this will be a Tracks and Tails visitor, had a great question today; “I am trying to search for hikes I can do this summber BC or Alberta where I can go for a few days camping and hiking but where I Can […]

Written By Clayton Kessler

On April 21, 2010

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A Tracks And Trails visitor, or ***warning: this is a pun*** maybe this will be a Tracks and Tails visitor, had a great question today;

“I am trying to search for hikes I can do this summber BC or Alberta
where I can go for a few days camping and hiking but where I Can take
my dog with me… any suggestiong on hikes or where I might find this
info?” 😛 😛 😛


My 4 month old Australian Shepherd cross, Sydney wants to go hiking to!

My first thought is if your planning to hike and camp in British Columbia or Alberta this summer, you will probably be travelling through the Rockies which would include Banff, Lake Louise Rogers Pass, Glacier National Park etc and if that is the case I would check out the respective Park websites for the individual loacation restrictions – I don’t think there are any (aside from keeping your dog on a leash around campsites). Having said that, I will be checking myself and find out if there are any blanket statements that can be made and will update this post asap.

Now if you are interested in Free Camping in BC, you can use the Forest Recreation Sites and pets are allowed, even Black Bear Pets so just be sure to treat them kindly if you see them and post a picture of them here please! If you are on any backroads in BC they are generally on Crown Land – Hiking and Camping is free and pets are allowed! 🙂

As for suggestions on hikes well, you have come to the right place. I could list my favourite hikes and camping areas below and encourage others to as well but there are a few listed here – Favourite Camping Areas but to really help your trip be memorable, I encourage you to leave a comment below and state your experience in camping and hiking and what features you would most like to see.


  1. Terrylynn

    I am trying to figure out where the various hikes/ camping trails would be in BC’s Crown Land… I like the picture you posted… I also have an Australian Sheapard… 6 months old… her name is Aspen…

    • Clayton

      Thanks for the comment. Email a pic of your puppy and I’ll post it beside Sydney, she needs a little company. Ok, if you are looking for trails and camping areas on crown lands, then follow the links above as the info is a great place to start with links that take you to BC government trail databases and maps etc. If you are looking for recommendations in a specific area, mention the area here and maybe we can get some feedback with specific areas. I could help you out with a few areas that I know of. Dogs will not be a problem.

  2. Anna

    Oh! Your dog is so cute. I never brought my dog with me during camping but you made it sound so fun and maybe one day I will try to bring my sweet Lestat along. Great blog.

  3. Brad

    Gonna start hiking with my dogs this summer. I understand the importants of not bothering the land and animals. Just wondering about if it is OK to let them off leash periodically. At a stream or lake to let them refresh themselfs get a drink ect.. Want to know a good rule of thumb. Any trails that are off leash?

  4. Clayton

    Hi Brad,

    I take my dog to regional parks, provincial parks and crown land all around Kelowna and the only time I keep Sydney on the leash is when a sign says so at the trail head…and if there are lots of other people around 🙂 Having said that, most of the parks and beaches in Kelowna are “on” leash parks. Last time I had Sydney off the leash in Mission Creek Regional Park – along the greenway, a passerby mentioned that one of the caretakers practically tackled another person he had seen to let him know that he would be fined if he did not leash his dog. I guess some of the park rangers are a little zealous.

    But yes, lots of the trails you can have your dog off the leash. I usually don’t pay too much attention to it because my pup stays close and comes to me quickly if I call her – even when another dog is around.

    But I could try to give some specifics on off leash trails – are you in Kelowna?

    • Brad

      I live in SE corner of Alberta but do plan on some weekend trips to go for hikes. I don’t mind walking my dogs on leash, it helps pace them better, big dogs. Plus they can be a little scary. Just want to keep them cool and when by water let them off leash for 5 min’s so they can go for a dunk, or if we lay down for a rest. I’ll use the “If a tree falls in the forest” rule of thumb.

      • Clayton

        Thanks Brad! I think that what you describe above is about the most responsible way to handle your dogs while on a hike. If there is park ranger who has a problem with that then he / she would have the problem!

  5. Zoe

    If you are planning on hiking in North Central BC I recommend a book written by Rob Bryce called Hiking in North Centra BC. the ISBN # 978-0-9782765-0-8. I’ve hiked this area my whole life. It is very accurate and has a CD with photos of trailheads etc. Pictures are sometimes worth 1000 words.


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