VANCOUVER -- The B.C. government is testing a day-pass system as a way to manage crowding at some of the province's most popular parks.

Free day-use passes will be available starting Monday at six parks. The pilot program is meant to help protect parks from the impacts of crowding.

Overuse has led to trail widening and soil erosion, the province said in a statement Wednesday. Damage to vegetation has also been noted.

And crowded parking lots at some parks mean people are parking along the highway, which can be unsafe.

The passes will be available on the Discover Camping website at 6 a.m. for daily bookings. They cannot be booked in advance, and cannot be transferred to another date, time or location, or shared.

The number of passes available each day will depend on the park, the province says.

Some parks will require a vehicle pass, while visitors to others will need individual passes to access certain trails.

Some of those passes will be for just the morning or afternoon, while others will be for the full day.

Backcountry campers who have a permit won't need a day-use pass, but should carry their permit if they're using certain trails.

Below are details on each of the parks' requirements.

Cypress Park

One pass is required per person, with a maximum of eight people per booking, for access to the upper mountain trails, including the Howe Sound Crest Trail, Hollyburn Mountain trails and the Black Mountain Plateau trails.

The passes are designated for morning or afternoon. Those with a morning pass must arrive before 1 p.m., while afternoon pass holders can't get there until after 1.


Each person needs to have their own pass for access to trailheads at Diamond Head, Rubble Creek and Cheakamus. These passes are for the full day, and park-goers can arrive at any time.

Golden Ears

A vehicle pass is required for a maximum of eight people per pass for access to all day-use areas and trails. These passes are morning or evening, and the a.m. pass requires arrival before 3 p.m., while the p.m. pass is for anyone arriving after 3.

Mount Robson Park

A vehicle pass is required for access to the Berg Lake Trail. This pass is also for the morning or afternoon. A.m. pass holders need to be there before 1, while afternoon pass holders can arrive any time after 1.

Mount Seymour

Access to upper mountain trails including the Seymour Main Trail, Dog Mountain Trail and Mystery Lake Trail will require a pass per person. These passes are also morning or afternoon, with the same time of 1 p.m.

Stawamus Chief

A pass is required per person for access to the Chief Peaks Trail, also called the Backside Trail. Morning pass holders need to arrive before 1, while afternoon pass holders can visit the park after 1.

Read more on the types of passes on the BC Parks website.