Jones Lake

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BC Hydro's Jones Lake Reservoir serves not only as a source of hydroelectric power, but also as an attractive public recreation area.

Recreation opportunities include camping, picnicking, swimming, boating, and fishing. Hiking, mountain biking and backcountry exploration are also popular in the area.

There are two recreation areas on the north shore of the reservoir and both have designated wheelchair accessible campsites, pit toilets and picnic tables.

For details about this recreation area, follow the links below:

 

Access and directions

Need directions? View a map of BC Hydro recreation areas, including specific directions to the Jones Lake Reservoir, where there are spectacular glacier views. Located 42 kilometre (km) east of Chilliwack, there are two camp sites, Jones Lake Main, and Jones Lake West.

Note that road conditions to Jones Lake may be poor, even during the summer. The road is an active logging road with steep, rough sections, designed for 4x4 vehicles with high clearance. Access for small cars, RVs and trailers is not recommended.

Heavy snowfall restricts vehicle access to the recreation area during winter months.

Find out about recreation area closures and restrictions.

History and hydroelectric operation

The water surface of Jones Lake Reservoir is over 600 m above the Fraser River. This makes it ideal for the generation of electricity.

The reservoir is approximately 6.4 km long and 1 km wide and is contained by an earthfill dam at the north end of the reservoir. Water from this reservoir is diverted through a tunnel under Four Brothers Mountain to Wahleach Powerhouse and then discharged into the Fraser River.

The Wahleach Project officially opened for power production on December 4, 1952. When completed, the project produced 14 per cent of the electric power required by the BC Electric Company, a predecessor of BC Hydro.

Today, this generating station supplies less than 1 per cent of the province's electrical requirements; however, it is one of BC Hydro's most efficient operating plants.

The STO:LO connection

The Jones Lake Reservoir area was used by members of the STO:LO First Nation as a peaceful stopover on their way to summer hunting grounds. On May 4, 1995 STO:LO Elders Mary Uslick and Minnie Peters blessed the area for the enjoyment of the people.

Campgrounds and recreation

Recreation opportunities at Jones Lake include camping, picnicking, swimming, boating, and fishing. Hiking, mountain biking and backcountry exploration are also popular in the area.

There are two recreation areas on the north shore of the reservoir and both have designated wheelchair accessible campsites, pit toilets and picnic tables.

Jones Lake Main

North of Boulder Creek

  • 31 campsites – each with fire ring and picnic table
  • 4 pit toilets
  • drinking water is not available at the moment; please bring your own water.
  • reservoir access for cartop boats

South of Boulder Creek

  • 6 campsites – each with fire ring and picnic table
  • Grassy landing with 7 fire rings and 7 picnic tables
  • 2 pit toilets
  • drinking water is not available at the moment; please bring your own water.
  • reservoir access for cartop boats
  • 17 vehicle parking lot

Jones Lake West

  • 18 campsites – each with fire ring and picnic table
  • Grassy landing with 2 picnic tables
  • 2 pit toilets
  • reservoir access for cartop boats
  • 6 vehicle parking lot
  • sorry, no drinking water here

Safety

Hydroelectric operations create special hazards for visitor safety. Releases of water from the spillway occur suddenly and without notice. For your own safety, avoid designated danger zones around the spillway and intake structures and obey all posted signs. Boaters in Jones Lake Reservoir should be aware of submerged hazards, floating debris, changing water levels, strong winds, large waves and cold water. High-speed boating and water skiing activities are not recommended. Obey all boater safety regulations. Ensure that you have an accurate map.

Carry emergency and safety equipment, including but not limited to extra shear pins and a propeller. Ensure familiarity with local conditions and reservoir hazards. Inform others of your destination and when you plan to return. Check the weather.

Follow the campfire safety rules.

Visitor information

  • Consumption of alcohol and drugs is prohibited on BC Hydro property and is strictly enforced by the RCMP.
  • Maximum 14 overnight visits per season.
  • No reservation of sites is permitted. Campers failing to occupy sites overnight may have their equipment removed at their expense so that others may use the site.
  • Firewood is available for a small fee (cash only). Please inquire with the Recreational Area Warden.
  • Keep fires contained to fire rings.
  • Pets must be kept on a leash within the Recreation Area.
  • Firearms and hunting are prohibited within the Recreation Area
  • Use of ATVs is prohibited within the Recreation Area.
  • Deposit all refuse in the containers provided.
  • The cabins located immediately south of the Recreation Area are privately owned.
  • The nearest public telephone is at Peters Road, Exit #151, about 2 km west on Highway #1 from the Jones Lake Forest Service Road.
  • This Recreation Area is open to the public year round, but is only maintained May 1 to October 15.
  • During the off-season please pack out your garbage and leave the area tidy for other visitors.
  • Camping can bring you into contact with many species of wildlife including deer, eagles, bears and cougars. Never feed wildlife and keep your pets under control. Ensure that all food materials, garbage and fish entrails are bagged securely and placed in the appropriate containers.
  • Report forest fires to 1 800 663 5555.