The Province of BC is reminding campers that showing up to designated free camping spots, days in advance, is a non-no:
It is unlawful to park unattended vehicles, trailers or tents to save a free campsite. Free campsites are available on a first-come basis.
The Forest and Range Practices Act section 20 (1)(c) states that people should not leave personal property on a campsite unless the person is camping.
“ What we really want people to do is to respect the first-come first-serve basis and try to make sure there’s fair opportunities for everybody to camp,” explained John Hawkings, Director of Recreation Sites and Trails, from the BC Ministry of Forests. Although different campsites have different rules, Hawkings says having gear set up anything more than 24 hours without actually camping could result in removal of items. “We certainly see people starting to leave things as early as Tuesday, Wednesday in preparation of the long weekend.”
There are over 900 free-for-use campsites in British Columbia.