Take a dip in Jaffray

Three majestic lakes waiting to be discovered

by Kimberley Shellborn
A view of Northstar Lake from the south shore.
Northstar Lake is just one of three incredible lakes in the Jaffray, B.C., area — Kimberly Shellborn photo

Jaffray is a small village half-way between Fernie and Cranbrook that can easily be missed as you drive through on Highway 3. However, by driving by you would miss out on three spectacular Kootenay lakes.

Rosen Lake

What you can’t see from the highway are beautiful mountain lakes that are worth a visit. Rosen Lake is a pristine, spring-fed mountain lake. It is known for its unusual aqua blue/green colour and the stunning mountain views that surround it. There are two boat launches on the lake, and two small public beaches. 

  • RV parking:  No
  • Driving Instructions:  If you are driving from the west (Cranbrook) on Highway 3, turn left at the Jaffray Pub and Grill onto Rosen Lake Road. If you are driving from the east (Fernie) on Highway 3, turn right at the Jaffray Pub and Grill onto Rosen Lake Road. Follow the road for five kilometres until you come to the lake.  There are two small public lake accesses, one on each side of the lake.

Tie Lake

Tie Lake is almost seven kilometres from Jaffray. It is the local boating lake that water-skiers frequent. As it is a shallow lake, the water is warmer than most other lakes in the area. There are two boat launching areas. The public swimming beach has a grassy picnic area complete with firepits, a bocce playing area and a nearby baseball diamond. On the east shore of Tie Lake, you will find a small campground. Even though it is close to the road, it is in a treed area and feels quite private. It is common to see wildlife in and around the lake.  You could see anything from loons and ducks on the lake to squirrels, deer and even black bears wandering near the lake.

  • RV Parking: Yes
  • Driving instructions:  If you are coming from the west (Cranbrook) on Highway 3 you will turn left onto Tie Lake Road directly across from the Pump and Pantry gas station. Coming from the east (Fernie) on Highway 3, you will turn right onto Tie Lake Road. Take Tie Lake Road for almost seven kilometres, continuing on the north shore until you come to the public beach. 

Northstar Lake

Northstar Lake is a small, secluded mountain lake popular with the locals for swimming, camping and fishing. Enjoying the beauty of nature in a quiet setting is easier than at some other lakes as motorized boats are not permitted on Northstar.
The sound of loons is a trademark at this lake; numerous times a day the loon’s distinctive cry will echo off the lake. The campground has only nine sites—four are on the waterfront and the others are slightly more private sites in the trees with a view of the lake.

  • RV parking: Yes, in the campground
  • Driving instructions:  At Jaffray turn onto the Jaffray-Baynes Lake Road. Continue on this road for about eight kilometres. There is a small sign on the left-hand side of the road for Northstar Lake. Follow the gravel road for another two kilometres. When you come to the fork in the road, take the left fork and continue until you get to the campground and day beach.



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