History and Historical Sites
In Canyon Country you don't have to be a history lover to enjoy historical experiences. With Historical sights both beautiful and fascinating we are sure that you will find an historical experience that is intriguing to you. View some of the related historical articles and start planning your trip today.
The Nlaka'pamux also known as Thompson River Salish, Thompson Salish, are an indigenous First Nations people of the Interior Salish language group in southern British Columbia. The Stolo or Lower Fraser Salish, are a group of First Nations peoples from the Fraser Valley British Columbia, Canada. The Stolo Traditionally speak Halq'emlem which is one of the Coast Salish languages. The word Stolo means people of the river.The St'a'imc are an Interior Salish people living in the southern Coast Mountains and Fraser Canyon British Columbia. The St'a'imc are the original inhabitants of the territory which includes parts of the Fraser Canyon, Lillooet, Whistler, and Pemberton. Read more...
Yale, B.C. was once the largest city north of San Francisco and west of Chicago. Originally established in 1848 as a Hudson's Bay Company trading post, Yale grew with the influx of an estimated 30,000 gold miners during the gold rush of 1858. In the 1860's, with the construction of the Cariboo Wagon Road, Yale became the main terminal for one of the largest sternwheeler routes in North America. The 1880's saw the building of the Canadian Pacific Railway, with construction headquarters housed in Yale. The Yale Historic Site is one of eleven Province of British Columbia Heritage Sites and is managed by the Yale and District Historical Society. The Society was formed in 1977 to gather, preserve, record and exhibit Yale's history. The 'Historic Yale' story is told through the preservation and maintenance of the St. John the Divine Church and the 1870's 'Creighton House' Museum and artifacts. The Yale and District Historical Society (YDHS) is a non-profit, registered charitable organization, holding the current contract with the BC Heritage Branch of the Provincial Government to maintain and operate the Heritage Site and buildings. For more information visit Read more>>>.
The Land Remembers...
Tour the original site where Fraser Canyon legends were born. See the summer lodges, smoke house, food caches, sweat lodge, earth ovens and an awe-inspiring pit house. Enjoy an historical adventure that will evoke deep memories of the old ways. We will greet you at the gates of the village and just like thousands of years ago, we will invite you into our pit house to visit one of our respected storytellers. Come share some of our traditional stories, walk our village and share in sacred memories of our Nlaka'pamux culture. Yes, the land remembers, and it is waiting to tell you of our past, come and listen..... For more information visit Read more>>>
The Seven Fraser Canyon
"The Fraser Canyon Highway Tunnels were constructed in the late 1950's to about the mid 1960's as part of the Trans Canada project. There are seven tunnels in total, the shortest being 57 m (190 ft); the longest, is 610 meters (2,000 ft) and is one of North America's longest. They are situated between Yale and Boston Bar. In order from south to north, they are: Yale, Saddle Rock, Sailor Bar, Alexandra, Hell's Gate, Freebee and China Bar. The Hell's Gate tunnel is the only tunnel that does not have lights, while the China Bar tunnel is the only tunnel that requires ventilation. A recent project on some of the Fraser Canyon Tunnels has been to install warning lights that are activated by cyclists before they enter the tunnel. This was required because the tunnel is curved. Credits: Gordon Anderson"
Othello Tunnels Located in the most rugged section of the Coquihalla Canyon, the Othello Tunnels in Hope British Columbia displays great history scenery and makes a nice leisure walk through some of British Columbia's most beautiful landscapes. In the Coquihalla engineers forged through mountain cliffs and over the raging canyon to construct a series of bridges and tunnels that blast through the rugged terrain, you can walk along the path where the Kettle Valley Railway once operated, learn about this spectacular piece of history, and view the magnificent Coquihalla Canyon.
The Lady Franklyn
The Lady Franklin is a beautiful large rock, or some say an island in the middle of the Fraser River in Hope BC. This rock island was named after Lady Jane Franklin, wife of Sir John Franklin an early explorer who loved this area. This beautiful area is located along the Old Caribou Wagon Trail. To get there drive along the Trans-Canada Highway east bound through Yale, across the small bridge take the first right, and follow the road that runs alongside the Fraser River for a couple minutes. This is a great picnic spot.
The Alexandra Bridge
Alexandra Bridge Provincial Park is centered on the site of the original Caribou Wagon Road Bridge over the Fraser River. The original bridge was constructed in 1861 by Joseph W. Trutch and named after Princess Alexandra of Wales. To recover the $45,000 construction cost for the 90 meter bridge, a toll of $7.40 per ton was charged. Today a second bridge, built in 1926, sits on the site of the original which was dismantled in 1912, the park was established in 1984. It provides both a rest stop with picnic facilities for travelers. Alexandra Bridge Provincial Park is two kilometers north of Spuzzum and 40 km north of Hope. There is a hiking trail that leads visitors down to the site of the old Alexandra Bridge; part of the trail are visual remains of the old highway from the 1920s.
The Gold Rush
In 1858 the Fraser Canyon was transformed forever when word that banks of the Fraser River were rich with gold hundreds of thousands of pioneers made their way to the fierce Fraser Canyon in hopes to strike it rich. Thousands of men died in their efforts as the Fraser Canyon had such a dangerous terrain to cross. Simon Fraser dubbed an especially dangerous part of the canyon as "Hells Gate" stating in his journal that; "no man should ever venture through this point it was surely like passing through the gates of hell". This didn't stop the gold hungry miners from continuing on in the chance they would too become rich like the many successful gold prospectors of that time. Small cities started to burst up everywhere in the Fraser Canyon turning Yale BC in the largest North American city east of Chicago. After the hype had died down these communities remain rich in history tere is many places throughout the Fraser Canyon where you can visit and learn about the gold rush. Yale BC has a museum, historic church and pioneer graveyard which have been preserved for viewing. Historic Yale and Hells Gate Airtram both have gold panning setups where you can learn how to pan for gold and keep the gold as a souvenir. Visit the Hope Visitor Info Center for more information regarding open claim spots to pan right on the Fraser River (experience required) and maybe you too can strike it rich.
The Aerial Ferry
The Aerial Ferry was constructed in 1939, officially opening to the public on March 15 1940. It operated as an aerial ferry (gondola) that suspended 1200 feet horizontally from the Cascade Mountain Range to the Coast Pacific Mountain Range and crossing the Fraser River in the mighty Fraser Canyon. The Aerial Ferry last operated in 1986 when it was replaced with the Cog Harrington Bridge because of increasing timber volumes and a higher demand for faster transportation. The Aerial ferry has been fully restored and is open for public viewing in the Francis Harrington Park along the Trans-Canada highway in downtown Boston Bar BC. The park is accompanied with a wide range of displays depicting the history of Boston Bar and the Fraser Canyon. Open year round it serves as an exciting and educational resting area while you visit the scenic Fraser Canyon.
The Pioneer Cemetery is the resting place to some of British Columbians earliest pioneers located off highway one in historic Yale. This beautiful piece of history is a lush meadow flat overlooking the banks of the Fraser River, although the Cemetery is a beautiful resting spot for many settlers, some of the history involving those that rest here is horrid. Locals tell the legends of tragedy and greed, a powerful poison during the gold rush many gold rushers were murdered, and their spirits left to rest along the gold banks of the mighty Fraser. Many say because of some tragic deaths the cemetery is haunted. The Pioneer Cemetery is open to the public, although it is recommended daytime visiting, those who dare can tour the cemetery at night a choice not recommended by locals.
Chinese Canadian History
After the Chinese were brought over to Canada to build the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) many were left on the banks of the Fraser River. To survive the Chinese became miners and built large trenches and dugouts used to mine jade and gold. These dugouts span the river banks in the Fraser Canyon from Lytton to Hope. These sights are largely unknown and underappreciated as significant historic landmarks and amazing links to Chinese Canadian history.
Spuzzum BC a small community almost non-existent these days, made famous for the T-shirt "Where the Heck is Spuzzum?" This small community between the Alexandra Suspension Bridge, and Yale BC was once a popular tourist stop in the 50's, 60's and 70's, Even hosting their very own "Playboy Bunny" Restaurant. Since The Spuzzum era was at its highest most of the community has burnt down, including the road side service station which burnt down 10 years ago. Now there is really nothing left, not even a road sign. 30 years later the T-Shirt that helped made this roadside attraction popular really has a meaning now, where the heck is Spuzzum? Can you find Spuzzum?
Ashcroft Operah House
TEMPORARILY CLOSED. Built in 1889, The Ashcroft Opera House hosts a fabulous international vegetarian buffet and presents dinner concerts and dinner theater. Be delighted by the incredible acoustics, the rustic elegance, the intimate atmosphere and Martin's culinary creations. An evening to be remembered The Ashcroft Opera House takes Reservations and welcomes Walk-Ins. The Opera House is great for groups, families and couples. Ashcroft Opera House also offers Catering, Waiter Service, and Outdoor Seating. Located in Ashcroft British Columbia. Visit the Ashcroft or Cache Creek Visitor Information for details. TEMPORARILY CLOSED.