Calm reflections of cloud and mountains on the surface of Charlotte Lake.
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Charlotte Lake

"When the winds whistle up the Atnarko River valley, it's time to head for shore." - Fisherman

Charlotte Lake is located 15 miles south east of Nimpo Lake. Turn off just south of the cattleguard at Towdystan to the west. There are small signs indicating the turnoff.

Like many of the lakes of the West Chilcotin, Charlotte Lake is a cold, high altitude lake with water so pristine, you can see everything under the surface clearly,and it's as though looking through a magnifying glass. The lake is over 10 miles long and nearly 5 wide and is known to produce trophy rainbow trout averaging 5lbs but much larger have been caught. However, it gets very little pressure and although there are a small number of summer and full time residences on a short section of her shoreline, you can often have a good part of the lake to yourself.

Charlotte Lake is surrounded by mountains of the Coast Range on every side but the east and empties into the Atnarko River which in turn eventually winds its way down out of the mountains, through the Bella Coola Valley to empty into the inlet there. The Atnarko River is considered to be one of the cleanest and ecologically sound rivers in British Columbia.

Although Charlotte Lake is a very deep lake, it is one of the few in the West Chilcotin that sports an expanse of sandy beaches and in some spots a gentle shelf from the shoreline, making it more fun for children to play in the water.

There are several horse trails and old logging trails on the east side of the lake, and some trails that can lead to strenuous hiking up into the mountains on the south and west side.

There are few operators on the lake but there is a B&B offering a large cabin as well as in house lodging, a small resort with cabins, and a non fee provincial recreational campground at one end. Explore this pristine lake with a boat, kayak or canoe but just be aware that winds do come up suddenly and the lake can produce some good sized waves.

At the west end of Charlotte Lake there is a small portage past a set of rapids into what's called Little Charlotte and a lake called Baby Charlotte. They are small lakes with rocky shores and fantastic fishing both with flies and lures and a wonderful place to have a picnic. From there you can look down over the Atnarko River valley and follow the river's route toward the ocean.

The incredible mountains sweeping up around the lake make for spectacular views and the area abounds with wildlife so have your camera ready!

Operators - Charlotte Clearwater Region

Atnarko Lodge
Charlotte Lake
One Eye Outfit
Charlotte Lake
Terra Nostra Guest Ranch
Clearwater Lake
 
A dock juts out from sandy beach over the water.
 
Cow and calf moose stand in Charlotte Lake.
 
Calm, icy water and mountains.
 
A kayaker paddles toward the mountains.
 
Fresh snow covers surrounding mountains and chills the water down.
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