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|Smithers, British Columbia||2023 dates TBD||TBD|
Situated in northwestern British Columbia, Smithers is approximately half way between the cities of Prince Rupert and Prince George. Smithers is our home base for most of the trip, with red brick sidewalks, alpine style rooflines, and an energetic community. The surrounding mountains and valleys are dominated by forests of pine, spruce and fir. Prince Rupert is steeped in the history of the Pacific Northwest. The area is the heart of Tsimshian Nation and is also home to other First Nations. Some of the exciting outdoor recreational activities on this itinerary include hiking, fly fishing, biking, whale watching, kayaking, and the opportunity to explore many native cultures. Excellent dining and SINGLE occupancy in our accommodations (with the exception of one stay) provides an extra level of comfort and safety while enjoying this extraordinary itinerary!
Your Canyon Calling Trip Leader will meet you at the Smithers Airport. Smithers, a town of approximately 6,000 people, offers outstanding outdoor recreational pursuits as well as a lively music scene, and an energetic community. We’ll check into our accommodations, and get to know each other as we enjoy our welcome dinner. Overnight Smithers.
After breakfast we’ll hike and bike in a number of areas including the Babine Mountain Provincial Park. With peaks to climb, valleys to cross, and tales of history to be uncovered, we’ll enjoy this summertime morning as wildflowers splash color across the meadows. Then it’s off to lunch at a fabulous organic farm where we will enjoy a family style luncheon grown from the very far. We can walk a labyrinth and if you choose to, do some yoga. After our satisfying morning and delicious lunch, we’ll enjoy a wander around the town and shop, or just chill before our return to the hotel. Dinner will be at a special place tonight…oh, they’re all special! Overnight Smithers.
After breakfast, we’ll enjoy a full day of activities including horseback riding and a tour of Moricetown Canyon, one of the five First Nation communities of the Wet’suwet’en people who have thrived in northern British Columbia for centuries prior to the arrival of the European settlers. We’ll see the roaring Bulkley River tumbling through Morice Canyon with the fish ladders and wooden fishing huts still used by the First Nation people. We’ll have a picnic lunch outdoors. Our horse back ride is with a family business operating in the Bulkley Valley since 1983. It’s a fun and safe two hour horseback adventure that captures the beauty of our surroundings… simply stunning scenery! We’ll head back to our hotel to clean up then head out to visit a museum that contains thousands of photographs depicting local life since the 1900’s. We’ll enjoy a delicious dinner before heading back to the hotel. Overnight Smithers.
After breakfast we’re off to Hazelton, an historical town situated at the confluence of the Skeena and Bulkley Rivers, nestled at the foot of Roche de Boule Mountain. The Village of Hazelton remains much like the original settlement, founded in 1866. We’ll visit ‘Ksan village, home of the Gitxsan peoples for over 8000 years. ‘Ksan is a place to honor generations past and present. This attraction is a premier showcase of Aboriginal culture. We’ll have lunch before departing for an afternoon of fly-fishing! If you’ve ever been tempted to try flyfishing or if you are familiar with this activity, this is the place to do it! The Bulkley River is home to spring salmon (also known as King or Chinook) along with coho (silvers), sockeye and pink salmon and the highly prized steelhead. Our local guide makes this experience memorable and ensures we have the proper gear. The destination for world class steelhead fishing, breathtaking scenery, majestic mountain ranges, and pristine rivers. We’ll return to town and have dinner at the lodge. Overnight Hazelton.
After breakfast we’ll check out of our lodge and enjoy a scenic drive to the coast. We’ll stop to hike in Seven Sisters Provincial Park & Protected Area.The Seven Sisters is aptly named for a row of rugged peaks, four of which reach above 8000′ in elevation. The Protected Area contains a complete elevational sequence of forested ecosystems from valley bottom to alpine. Resident mountain goat herds live within the protected area along with bears, raptors and other birds, moose, mule deer, coyotes and wolves, to name a few critters we may be lucky enough to see. We’ll lunch and sightsee along the way to Prince Rupert. On British Columbia’s wild and beautiful Northwest Coast, Prince Rupert is a vibrant town where nature, history, and personalities are larger than life. Prince Rupert offers exceptional wildlife viewing, attractions that bring the coast’s ancient Aboriginal culture and pioneer heritage alive, and the urban pleasure of good restaurants, fascinating shops, and colorful neighborhoods. We’ll check in and stay at our B & B for two nights. Dinner and overnight in Prince Rupert.
After breakfast we’ll kayak to petroglyphs! Rock carvings and paintings are found throughout the inhabited world. In British Columbia alone, over 500 examples of this type of archaeological site have been recorded. The rock carvings, or petroglyphs, were made by the aboriginal people of the region by pecking and abrading selected rock surfaces with stone tools. Locations for rock art carvings and paintings were carefully chosen. They were places of power or mystery; places where the forces of nature were believed to be especially strong. They are marked by unusual natural features such as waterfalls, rock formations or caves. We’ll see The Man Who Fell From Heaven rock, among others. Nearly all sites are near water and may also be near old village sites or along trails or ancient trade routes. We’ll work up an appetite for an enjoyable lunch. This afternoon we’ll whale watch. A variety of whales pass Prince Rupert on their regular migrations north and south, so whale watching here is a remarkable and unforgettable experience. Dinner and overnight Prince Rupert.
After breakfast we’ll say farewell to Prince Rupert and transfer back to Smithers, with several stops along the way. One particular stop is in Terrace to explore, shop, lunch and enjoy this town is a must. Terrace is a city on the Skeena River. The Kitselas people, a tribe of the Tsimshian Nation, have lived in the Terrace area for thousands of years. There is much history, culture, arts, and outdoor activities to enjoy. We’ll head to Smithers, check into our hotel, and enjoy our Farewell Dinner together as we recount the fascinating and fun week in beautiful British Columbia. Overnight Smithers.
Enjoy breakfast then depart for the airport for your return flight home, or stay and play on your own!