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Home / Thompson Okanagan / North Okanagan / Cherryville

Cherryville

History

Cherryville is an unincorporated community in the foothills of the Monashee Mountains in British Columbia with a population of approximately 1000.

The small community of Cherryville was an old gold mining camp founded in the 1860s by prospectors from the California Gold Rush. Between 1863 and 1895, the original town that is now known as Cherryville was a small mining camp located within the canyon walls of Cherry Creek. Its population was 100 people, half of whom were Chinese miners.

With more and more miners heading into Cherry Creek area, a road was built from Lumby in 1877, through Blue Springs Valley, attracting new families to the area. The community was known by the post office name of Cherry Creek, then Hilton, which remained the name of the Cherryville for many years. Cherry Creek and Cherryville were named after the wild Choke Cherries that grew along the banks of the creek.

Location

Cherryville is located on Hwy 6 in the North Okanagan, 15 km (9 mi) east of Lumby.

Places to See
  • Goldpanner Campground

Bring the entire family for a taste of history, along with the peace and tranquility amongst the huge cedars and running creeks. Try your luck at goldpanning or take a historical bus tour on the 10 seater antique bus.

Take a beautiful hike along the Heckman and Monashee creeks, which cover about 8 kilometres. Visit the gift shop or try the great home cooked meals and pies in the cozy restaurant. Look at some history in our Cherryville Museum, which is also located here.

  • Cherryville Museum

At the Cherryville Musuem one can view old farming and mining equipment and explore life as it was through the stories of local residents. Visitors can view the old Chinese placer diggings and if you're careful you can still hear the echoes of stones as they fall from the "rockers" along Heckman Creek.

  • Cherryville Artisans' Shop

The Cherryville Artisans' Shop has built a fine reputation and made many friends since it opened its door in May 2001. The shop is located on Highway 6, in a delightful rural setting in the foothills of the Monashee Mountains.

The shop building itself is colourfully painted with a mural celebrating the four seasons. An outdoor resting area is incorporated into the landscaping around the building, with a sculpture garden including a pond and giant mushroom umbrellas.

The shop is filled with local handcrafted wares including fused and blown glassworks; steel and glass sculpture and furniture; jewellery; functional and decorative pottery; handwoven clothing, homewares and other accessories; log furniture and other woodwork; greeting cards, handcrafted soap, and more.

  • O'Keefe Ranch

Founded in 1867, O'Keefe Ranch was once one of the largest cattle ranches in British Columbia, spanning over 20,000 acres of prime Okanagan land. From their humble beginnings, the O'Keefe family built up a small settlement consisting of a general store - with the first post office in the Okanagan Valley, a blacksmith shop, St. Anne's Church built in 1889 (and still a popular wedding location), plus many other necessary ranch buildings.

Today, O'Keefe Ranch is a designated BC Heritage Site and an important tourist attraction in the Okanagan Valley. Here you'll discover some of the oldest remaining structures in the Vernon area, all carefully preserved or restored, each with its own unique and fascinating exhibit. A guided tour of the grand Victorian style O'Keefe Mansion offers a more personal insight into the lifestyle of the Victorian era.

  • Silver Star Mountain Resort

The beautiful majestic mountain landscape, the Victorian Village, and outstanding customer service have made Silver Star Mountain Resort one of North America's top family resorts. In the summer, enjoy the variety of unique nature tours and mountain biking for all levels. In the winter, whether it is ski tours, snowboard lessons, snowshoe trails, or sleigh rides, Silver Star Mountain Resort is ready to accommodate you. 

  • Monashee Provincial Park

Monashee Provincial Park protects substantial stands of old growth cedar, spruce, and hemlock. Lush green forests grace the valley bottoms and, in the spring, alpine meadows blossom with a colourful array of wildflowers. The park is also known for some of the oldest rock formations in western Canada. Peters and Margie Lakes sparkle beneath 2697 metre high Mount. Fosthall, the highest peak in the park and part of the rugged Monashee Range of snow-capped peaks that surround the park. Lucky visitors may get a glimpse of the rare mountain caribou or wolverine or the much more common mule deer, ground squirrels, and pikas. This undeveloped mountain wilderness is a wonderful adventure for both experienced, backcountry hikers and willing beginners alike.

  • Echo Lake Provincial Park

A tree-fringed lake southeast of Lumby preferred by solitude-seeking swimmers and sunbathers. Listen for the echo that gives the lake its name.

Echo Lake Fishing Resort is situated on the north shores of Echo Lake within the park boundaries. This is a privately owned and operated resort that offers guests camping, cabin accommodation, and boat rentals.

Things to Do
  • Birdwatching

Birders are sure to enjoy great birdwatching in the Monashees. During the summer months Mabel Lake Provincial Park allows excellent viewing of Swainson's Thrush, Western Flycatchers, Osprey and Bald Eagles. Rawlings Lake is a nesting area for Ruddy Ducks, Black Terns and Sandhill Cranes, and many other species of birds can be seen along Creighton Valley Road (Thrush, Dippers and Loons), at Sugar Lake (Barred Owls, Bobolink and Mountain Bluebird), and Ptarmigan and plenty of Marmots in the amazing Monashee Provincial Park.

  • Skiing

Cat skiing is available in the famous Monashee Mountain Range for powder skiing enthusiasts. The terrain is on Tsuius Mountain and associated peaks, nestled in the heart of the Monashee, with over 1,520 vertical metres (5,000 feet) of high altitude bowls, mid altitude glades, and the Monashee range special; steep tree skiing to the valley floor. The trailhead is located 40 km north of Cherryville.

Cross-country skiers receive just as much welcome at Silver Star as do other winter enthusiasts. Beginning from the trailhead at the entrance to the resort, the 37 kilometres of tracked and groomed trails fan out through the park. An additional 50 km of groomed trails lead through the adjacent Sovereign Lake area. The trailhead for the Sovereign Lake cross-country area is located just west of the entrance to the resort and has its own parking area. A fee is charged for cross-country skiing here and at the resort.

  • Canoeing

Canoeing in the Monashee can be a real adventure. Mabel Lake and Sugar Lake offer canoeists many beaches that are secluded and off the beaten path. If it is white water you are after, BC Hydro operates a canoe launch on the Shuswap River, complete with a maintained parking area, picnic tables and a large map of the canoe route, from midway between Sugar Lake and Shuswap River.

  • Hang Gliding

Nearby Lumby offers a public hang gliding launch site in the Trinity Valley at Defies Creek, known locally as Coopers Launch. Saddle Mountain is also a great launch site, but is restricted to those accompanied by a local pilot. The 1995 Canadian Nationals were held in Lumby, and at least one major competition is held annually, featuring the top hang gliders in Canada.

  • Wildlife Viewing

Due to diverse ecosystems, the Monashee offers a great variety of wildlife viewing. The transition from Okanagan grassland and Ponderosa Pine forests to Douglas Fir and Interior Rainforests, as well as alpine, provides a range habitat which is home to many different kinds of birds, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians - not to mention life in the lakes and streams.

Remember, this area is sparsely populated and the farms and villages you see along the travel routes are often bordered by wilderness, so be prepared for risk and adventure, Much of the Monashee is Grizzly Bear country and seeing a Black Bear is quite common. Large populations of whitetail deer inhabit the valley bottoms and the lower altitude logging cutbacks. The mixed forests bordering the numerous hayfields and pastures are particularly productive white-tailed deer habitat, so viewing deer from the road is quite common, so drive carefully and stop when you see deer ready to cross the road. Mule deer can be found at higher altitudes, which can be accessed via logging roads and trails.  

Nearby Communities
Contact Information

Cherryville Community Website
Web: http://cherryville.homestead.com/

Lumby & District Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 534
Lumby, BC V0E 2G0
Telephone: 250-547-2300
Fax: 250-547-2390
E-mail: lumbychamber@shaw.ca
Website: www.monasheetourism.com

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Background Photo Credit: Destination British Columbia

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